Long list of fixes cited for Kane Animal Control
By Matt Brennan For The Beacon-News August 29, 2012 6:12PM
Updated: October 3, 2012 6:09AM
GENEVA — With many questionmarks still looming, Kane County officials are looking at how to improve the county’s Animal Control Department.
The department has been without an executive director for more than a year, and has had trouble generating revenue during that time.
With a budget proposal due, the County Board Public Health Committee this week discussed options available for improving the efficiencies of the department.
“The Animal Control Department needs to put a lot of processes in place, and that won’t happen overnight,” Health Department Executive Director Barbara Jeffers said.
Jeffers said she is working with the Information Technology Department to develop a more efficient system for tracking rabies violations. Animal Control fell behind on entering rabies vaccinations, and had a backlog of 60,000 files. They ended up spending $27,000 on temporary employees to catch them up.
One of the department’s largest revenue producers is the revenue generated from rabies violations. The department stopped issuing the violations, and realized the magnitude of how far behind it was when County Board Member Melisa Taylor, R-Sugar Grove, received a rabies violation ticket in error.
Jeffers wants to get a system in place that will allow the department to better see who is in violation and who is not. They are working to get something in place before resuming issuing violations, she said.
Jeffers said she also wants to increase the visibility of the county’s adoption programs. While it doesn’t produce as much revenue as tags and registration fees, upgrading the adoption program will help in improving the efficiency of the department, she said.
Jeffers wants to develop a strong marketing program that will help alert county residents to the option of adopting an animal through Animal Control.
Fixing the data entry so that Animal Control can begin issuing violations again is still her No. 1 goal, however, because it will provide for more revenue.
The committee also discussed an upcoming change in state statutes that is going to require charging different amounts for tags on non-neutered or non-spayed animals.
A one-year tag for spayed or neutered dogs and cats will be $10, while it will cost $25 for non-neutered or non-spayed dogs and cats. A three-year tag for neutered or spayed dogs and cats will be $25, while it will be $50 for non-neutered or non-spayed animals.