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LETTER: If N. Highline Annexed, ‘Burien Will Have to Provide Animal Control’

I attended the NHUAC meeting where King County Animal control did a presentation about the services they provide to their members.

I was very impressed with the services they provide to the unincorporated area and the member cities they service ..

They have 8 animal control officers and an animal cruelty investigator plus they provide animal control services 7 DAYS A WEEK.

They have an euthanasia rate of 14% (one of the lowest in the nation). They provide many services that are currently NOT being provided under Mike Martins CARE program which can only be described as dysfunctional at best.

They contacted every city in sectional part of the King County area to ask them if they wanted to participate. They got no response from the city of Burien.

They have a new 3 year contract that will start July 1st that Burien still has time to be part of.

The costs are done using a formula depending on area and population. Since Burien is in the middle of the service area they would have one of the lower cost contracts.

I wanted to bring to the city councils attention that if the North Highline/White Center area is annexed by Burien by law Burien will have to provide equivalent animal control services to what King County is now providing to the proposed annexation area.

CARES does NOT by any stretch of the imagination provide anywhere near the animal control services that King County now provides to the annexation area.

I spoke with the administrator of the program who spoke at the meeting along with one of her animal control officers and she told me that if Burien decides to join the consortium after the July 1st consortium contract begins, that Burien will have to pay more and maybe significantly more than if they join the consortium now.

I found it odd that Mike Martin who spoke just before King County animal control gave their presentation left the meeting without hearing anything of what they had to say or offer.

Apparently it appears likely that our City Manager does not even know what the cost would be to join the King County animal control consortium.

So it is difficult to judge how much more it would cost than it is currently costing for the less effective CARES program that he has initiated.

Would the city council please ask Mr Martin to provide some hard numbers so the council can decide if we would be better off joining the consortium of King County animal control in comparison to what we are getting now with CARES..?

Also it would be appropriate to find out what the euthanasia rate is with CARES and how many days of the week do they provide animal control in the field for the City of Burien and the extent of that coverage?

There are other questions that need to be answered on this subject but getting these answers would be a good place to start.

Thank You on behalf of all the animal owners and animal lovers in the City of Burien.

– John and Linda Poitras

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