To the Editor,

After greater than two years of a successful capital campaign by Don Franchino and his many volunteers, this BOD determined to over throw his efforts – for what purpose or gain? Were they concerned that a new facility might become a reality or that their positions on the BOD might be threatened? What is the likelihood of this BOD succeeding with a new facility when they regularly appeal to the public for basic daily supplies?

I have no concerns of financial mismanagement by this BOD – there are insufficient contractual funds and the generosity of the public is sporadic and unreliable for basic operational needs. The staff are limited in number, and I believe they do the best they can under adverse conditions. The Hi-Tor BOD is simply a vendor management organization.

Animal care, control & welfare issues are matters that affect all residents of the county for concerns of public health and safety. That the so many elected governmental officials in Rockland have ignored animal care and welfare for too many years is fully unacceptable to me and many others. My understanding of a BOD is that they hire a qualified ED and fund raise – there is no ED, qualifications for staff are non-specific, fund raising has been minimal. This BOD operates with apparent impunity – losing qualified staff, dedicated volunteers and public support.

There is no other public shelter in Rockland that accepts all animals from the public and animal control. Hudson Valley Humane Society accepts some adoptable or lost animals, brings animals into the county as ‘rescues’ from other states and performs ‘Humane Law Enforcement’ for cases of animal abuse – though there is no official oversight from any police or sheriff’s department for those activities. The county enacted an Animal Abuse Registry a few years ago – but enforcement of that law is also uncertain.

I would strongly suggest intervention for these many concerns by an independent management organization (ASPCA, HSUS) at least on a temporary basis to evaluate the activities of the current BOD, and appointment of a new management group with public and governmental representation to insure that all matters of animal care and welfare and public interest are addressed and transparent.


Amy Wertheim
Pearl River

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