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Douglas County's Move In a New Direction

A year later and the LifeLine assessment that was once sought after by the Douglas County Humane Society is no longer mentioned by the Humane Society.

Last year, the citizens of Douglas county were told by their board of commissioners, that their concerns about our animal shelter were being addressed and progress was being made. Last March, the commission chairman put forth a much lauded effort to represent his state of the county address as a vehicle to raise money toward the building of a new animal shelter.

Subsequently, the money raised from that event wasn't spent on a new shelter, but rather it was spent toward paying for a shelter assessment that had been being pushed by the Douglas County Humane Society. The commission chairman, utilizing the funds donated toward a new shelter, reportedly partnered with the Douglas County Humane Society, to pay the almost $8000 for the LifeLine assessment that was completed last April.

This assessment was to be the roadmap for the commissioners to begin addressing the needs of our shelter and our animal control department and it was to be a roadmap for hiring progressive leadership to manage our shelter. The assessment was to be the guiding influence in moving Douglas county into the twenty first century of progressive animal welfare and shelter management.

The LifeLine assessment is available on line here.

The Lifeline assessment was submitted to the board of commissioners and the people of Douglas county April of last year. The assessment consists of a 130 page document that systematically reviewed all aspects of animal control and shelter operations in Douglas county, the needs of that department, the needs of the people and the needs of the animals. The assessment was compiled utilizing an experienced and systematic means by which to address and evaluate each level of need and the existing deficiencies that were revealed by the LifeLine assessment.

The assessment laid out four basic approaches to remedy the needs of our shelter and our animal control department. Immediate (within two weeks). Short term, (within three months). Medium term (within nine months) Long term (within a year). At each stage of the assessment, specific recommendations were made to the board of commissioners as to how to accomplish these goals in the immediate and the long term. There was also weighted emphasis in the assessent placed on the need to work with the community to establish partnerships toward the common goals of a progressive and properly managed facility.

A year later and the LifeLine assessment that was once sought after by the Douglas County Humane Society is no longer mentioned by the Humane Society. The LifeLine assessment that was once represented by our board of commissioners as a demonstration of their commitment to establishing a progressively managed animal shelter, now languishes in oblivion and obscurity. The assessment that was to be our roadmap to success, is now forgotten by a board of commissioners who's newly stated goal is their desire "to move in a new direction with animal control."

The people of Douglas county deserve answers from their board of commissioners and they deserve to be heard and responded to by their elected officials. The people of Douglas county deserve to know why money was spent and great effort was expended by many volunteers in this community, only to see their efforts abandoned so that "the county could move in a new direction."

The people of Douglas county should be told of the direction they are being carried toward by this board of commissioners. The people of Douglas county should be told why there was a need to abandon all progress made and move in a new direction. And most importantly, the people of Douglas county deserve to know who is behind these moves away from demonstrated success and a desire to turn back the clock on animal welfare in Douglas county.

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Pat Evans March 13, 2013 at 06:15 AM
Everyone should read that $8000 assessment. My question is WHO dropped the ball after this was done and WHY? Who is benefiting from this "new direction" the BOC has chosen to run with? By the way, anyone have an idea, clear picture of what this "new direction" is? There are excellent recomendations, compliments to DCAS in that report. There are also some room for improvement issues too. Sounds like DCAS was well on it's way to becoming a Non-Kill Shelter, in 2012. As I was reading through the accessment, I immediately thought of Rick Smith "limiting /elmination of space" for the housing of the animals. This clearly was one of his first courses of action in ensuring that the ratio of animals impounded, and Euthanasia rate would clearly spike. If there are dogs or even cats that cannot be boarded together, that immediately gives him a reason to kill them asap "legally". The stopping of the "socializing of the dogs especially (court yard sharing of space) lends itself to "stressing out the animals" further while they are impounded. So how is one to determine if a dog is "good with other dogs" if not allowed to socialize amongst themselves? How can that question be honestly answered to a prospective adopter? Appears the Commission Chairman presented a false front to the people, decieving them of the funds raised for one thing, using them for another, then totally trashing the $8000. That's a slap in the face to the citizens of DC. Wake up people! It's about the POWER!
Pat Evans March 13, 2013 at 06:35 AM
I believe that the BOC and some of the other political heads in this county are in need of their own "LifeLine Assessment". They are elected/appointed to serve the people of this county, NOT to serve themselves and rule the people of the county. Douglas County does not need these "greedy power hungry" politicians to continue to break promises and line their own pockets with your monies. Just think, this is only one of the issues (DCAS) they are trying to sweep "under the rug" from their citizens. Time to learn... Who's doing the spending, What it's being spent on, and Where your monies are really going. Starting with the Douglas County Animal Shelter, it's a good place to start and saving these innocent lives is what's important.
Tracy Thompson March 13, 2013 at 01:17 PM
We were on the right path. Following the Lifeline roadmap and brought the euthanasia rate down to 16%. No one has been given an explaination as to what this "new direction" is. The press release was a pathetic attempt to kick sand over the truth and attack those with the guts to stand up for the animals. Unfortunately those in the position to stop this horrible "new direction" the Douglas County Humane Society and the Animal Control Advisory Board have apparently a different agenda. Paulding is still recovering from a new direction they decided to take three years ago that brought their euthanasia rate from 34% to 75%. From what I have been told they are actually following a lot of the suggestions in the Douglas Lifeline evaluation and they are doing it for free! Hmmmm pretty smart. One county pays $8000 for a roadmap they ignore and another county pays nothing but has the sense to utilize it to do better.
Faustino Vincent DeJohn March 13, 2013 at 01:54 PM
I have experienced first hand the elitism of Douglas County government. "Fox Hall Farms", a world class development. I was told by a Douglas Country building inspector, (being a Paulding County Carpenter) "Your framing inspection would have passed if you were from Douglas County". A very sharp contrast to other projects in my 20 year career. Yes, the 'Good old boy' system is firmly in place. The 'County Line' is less the a mile from my home of 27 years. I've never had a need to recognize that line. I realised that what had shocked me was just the way it was done in Douglas County. This was 2009, Worthan was in power then as he is now. All that happens in Douglas County is by the hand of Mr. Tom Worthan, and yes I am calling him out. This is the man that give us the head of "Ninna" as a threat to the people that resist him.
Faustino Vincent DeJohn March 13, 2013 at 02:31 PM
Tom Wothan will not stray from is master plan. His goal to exterminate select breeds, no mater what the law is, and to 'clean up' the gettos and trailer parks. Tom Worthan designed 'HOPE' to do exactly what it is doing rite now, NOTHING. The Smith are only doing what Worthan demands. Signature on a petition mean nothing to him unless that petition head line reads "Recall Ballot", his re-election is years away.

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