News 8’s Coverage Of The Disaster At The WCRAS

Posted in Animal Shelter, Had Enough Yet?, Williamson County at 4:47 pm by wcnews

News 8’s Chelsea Hover is doing a great job covering this issue. Could there have been a cover-up of the problems at the animal shelter? It’s starting to look that way.

Here is her first report from Monday, Wilco animal shelter struggling with animals, staffing, to get you up to speed. But from today’s article we hear again of people being threatened and told not to “speak ill” of the animal shelter, Wilco animal shelter problems came with warning.

But many say they saw this coming.

It’s a regional shelter, meaning shelters in Round Rock, Hutto, Leander and Cedar Park closed their doors the day it opened.

“We were told once the animals were gone from here it was no longer the city’s problem. We were told not to speak ill of the project or we could potentially be terminated,” Stacey Sherva, former director of the Cedar Park Animal Control Shelter, said.

Sherva was the director of the Cedar Park Animal Control center for eight and a half years. She resigned the day she learned they would be forced to transfer their rescues to the regional shelter.

She and a group of other animal advocates went to their city leaders, pleading with them to reconsider.

“We tried to show them, with documents, that that facility was being built too small. We tried to convince them with the numbers that we had, and Round Rock had, and Leander had that 45 kennels on their first draft was going to be completely inadequate,” Sherva said.

“They did seek input from other entities, and were tyring to get that input to use the best available data that they had,” Williamson County public information officer Connie Watson said.

The county was told of problems before the shelter opened and they did nothing. Then they threatened the people that told them of the problems. That’s not good, but that is what Republicans do. If you’ll remember the first shelter director that she was told not to talk to anyone about the problems either. From Melanie Sobel’s letter:

I was then called by Commissioner Boatright to meet with him at his office where he advised me not to say anything negative about the project to the other city representatives on the committee.

That’s just how our unaccountable elected officials think democracy works in Williamson County. Then we’re told of the non-responsiveness, we’ve all become so accustomed to in Williamson County, by the unaccountable Republicans that run it.

Although many of the county commissioners have claimed to be animal-lovers, those who are dedicating their waking hours to fighting this cause on behalf of these animals, like Moses, said they find that hard to believe.

“I know I’ve written to them, others have written to them, gone to meetings. However, for them, it seems it always goes back to…the money,” Moses said.

News 8 obtained a copy of the shelter’s newly approved budget and it shows that only nine percent of total expenditures are for animal care and medication.

The most significant expenses are staff salaries and euthanasia services.

While the former Cedar Park shelter boasted a kill rate of just 8.9 percent of all animals, the regional facility reports a 34 percent kill rate of just adoptable animals. That means that animals deemed unadoptable are not factored in to that number.

Maybe if there was a check with those letters they would have gotten an answer. From this reporting the story is starting to change from willful ignorance to the possibility of a cover-up of a project that our county leaders know had gone bad and did nothing to correct. The only way to get their attention is to vote them out, let us begin.


  1. tweety said,

    July 10, 2007 at 8:56 pm

    FYI…a family friend’s cat has been missing for the past 2 weeks. Last week, the family of the cat, went to the WCRAS to search for their beloved. They were denied access to the cat area and had to give a discription of the cat so someone could go back and check the cages. Unfortunatlely, WCRAS could not find a cat matching their discription.

    WEll, this is a first for me. After a kitty of mine went missing, I had to go to a shelter to check. I did not want to go and see all these homeless animals. The shelter would not take a discription from me, so I had to view the cages myself.

    Sounds like Commissioners’ WCRAS are hiding something once again. TSK,TSK,TSK!

  2. Eye on Williamson » Coalition Emerges In Landfill Fight - A Better Wilco said,

    July 11, 2007 at 3:06 pm

    […] the Williamson County Commissioners Court wants to keep secrets from the citizens. Here’s a list of the groups involved. Organizations which have passed resolutions requesting […]

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