Animal Control Up for Bid

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The job of taking care of animal control services for Colorado Springs is up for bid.

Right now, animal control is handled by the Humane Society of the Pikes Peak region. There have been some budget disagreements between the city and the Humane Society in the past year.

The previous city council only signed a 10 month contract with the Humane Society for 2003, leaving November and December unfunded.

Tuesday night, the current council voted to dip into the reserve account for the 46,000 dollars needed for those two months. But that's just a last resort. They're hoping other departments will come in under budget sot they won't have to use the reserve.

The city council is now looking ahead to the 2004 budget, but the city and the Humane Society don't agree on the budget for next year. And that could mean big changes.

The city has put together an RTF, or a request for other organizations to make a bid and take over the city's animal control services.

The Humane Society is a contractor, not a part of the city. Council member Jerry Heimlicher says all city departments are making cuts for 2004, so it's only fair that the Humane Society also make the cuts.

The Humane Society says they do plan to submit a bid that will be appropriate for the services that they provide.

If another organization does beat that bid, that could pose another problem. The city and county owns 80 percent of the building that houses the Humane Society, so without that contract, they stand to lose their new building as well.

Councilman Heimlicher says the city does hope to keep working with the Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region.