SPCA asking Campbell River council to reconsider its decision on animal shelter contract

The BC SPCA is formally requesting that city council reconsider its decision to award the animal impound contract to Coastal Animal Control

The BC SPCA is formally requesting that city council reconsider its decision to award the animal impound contract to Coastal Animal Control Services.

Craig Daniell, BC SPCA chief executive officer, wrote a letter to the mayor and council on Thursday urging the city to change its mind.

“The BC SPCA is of the opinion that it is not too late for council to re-examine its original decision,” Daniell said. “It is apparent that our position is shared by an overwhelming majority of residents of the City of Campbell River.”

Upset that the SPCA closed its local branch after the city awarded its animal control contract to Coastal Animal Control hundreds of residents rallied outside of city hall to voice their displeasure.

The city’s rationale for choosing Coastal Animal Control was based on its score through the city’s bidding process which was based on experience, references, and cost.

But Daniell is disputing that Coastal Animal Control is the cheaper option.

“It would be our position that Coastal’s offer on a per hour basis is significantly higher than that of the BC SPCA,” Daniell said. “It is our belief that the terms and conditions that appear to have been given to Coastal Animal Services differs markedly from those offered to the BC SPCA, to the point where the two offers cannot even be objectively compared.”

A city report does reveal the SPCA was asked to give a quote for just animal shelter services but the city did not request a quote from Coastal for just shelter services. Both were, however, asked to give a quote for combined shelter and animal control services.

Coastal is expected to be paid $25,000 per year for city pound services with a two per cent increase in year four and year five. That contract is expected to be officially awarded at Tuesday night’s council meeting. Coastal has already been given the animal enforcement contract for $105,000.

The SPCA meanwhile is renewing its offer to the city to provide full animal sheltering services, which includes the spaying and neutering program, for $95,000 per year. Daniell said that amount is approximately one quarter of the nearly $400,000 per year it costs the BC SPCA to operate the Campbell River shelter.

Daniell thanked the community for its support in a letter to local volunteers and supporters.

“We deeply appreciate the concern that has been expressed by our loyal supporters and volunteers in Campbell River and to all those who attended the recent public rally to support the SPCA,” he wrote. “We remain committed to the community and to the animals we serve.”

Daniell is encouraging the public to contact city council to express its views and “support the reinstatement of the BC SPCA as the organization responsible for pound services in Campbell River.”

For more see Wednesday’s Campbell River Mirror.