Humane Society doesn’t want to run county animal shelter

May 23, 2019

KINGMAN — Mohave County Manager Mike Hendrix has informed the Board of Supervisors that staff is preparing to transition to Mohave County operation of the animal shelter in downtown Kingman.

During Friday’s budget workshop, Hendrix told supervisors that the Lake Havasu City-based Western Arizona Humane Society no longer wants to operate the shelter through contract with the county.

WAHS Executive Director Patty Gillmore, in an April 22 letter to a county procurement official, said the organization has had a long-standing relationship with the county, but is not interested in operating the shelter once its contract expires at the end of June.

“Our board of directors have voted not to pursue the contract as we always have in the past, due to a number of factors,” Gillmore stated. “We feel that the upkeep of the facility has become financially impossible for our organization due to the volume of repairs on a monthly basis. ... Also, the numbers of animals, especially hoarding cases where medical expenses are so high, has just become too much of a strain on our financials.”

Hendrix told supervisors that the county solicited proposals of interest to operate the shelter but received no response by a May 16 deadline.

“Staff is currently in the process of pulling together all of the budgetary and operational information and preparing a comprehensive plan that will allow the county to take over the operation of the animal shelter under the direction of county administration,” Hendrix said at the budget workshop. “I anticipate placing this before the board for consideration at your June 3 meetings.”

Hendrix said the county would save the $260,000 it spends on the contract with WAHS, but that shelter operation cost is projected at about $360,000. He said there’s hope that donations and grants can make up much, if not all, of the difference.

Board Chairwoman Hildy Angius and Sup. Jean Bishop both spoke of the need to build a new shelter in the near future. Hendrix said that would cost about $3 million.

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