SCBC to revisit funding the TSC Humane Shelter on Tuesday

The Stephens County Board of Commissioners will meet on Tuesday, January 24, at 5:30 p.m. for its regular scheduled meeting. The meeting will be held in the Historic Stephens County Courthouse Courtroom.

The meeting will begin with land use public hearings for two rezoning requests, a conditional use request, and a variance request.

The Commission will consider a motion to approve or deny a request from the Toccoa-Stephens County Humane Shelter for $25,000 in supplemental funding.

As WNEG News previously reported, in July, the Humane Shelter requested additional funding from the County Commission. During that time, the Commission agreed to approve $25,000 in supplemental funding and that the remaining $25,000 in funds could be requested from the new Stephens County Board of Commissioners.

At that meeting, Humane Shelter representative Angie Garland came forward asking for $50,000; however, the Commission agreed to partial fund the request.

Former County Administrator Phyllis Ayers explained that the shelter is funded through the county and City of Toccoa, plus through fundraising efforts and grants they receive. Ayers then read a letter issued by the Humane Shelter Board’s Chairwoman Jeanette Jamieson, which explained how the shelter would have to make changes to their operations if additional funding was not received.

Those changes include closing the shelter two days a week, limiting the number of animals the shelter can hold, or limit intake to only stray animals.

Garland said that the Shelter was what brought the Stephens County Board of Commissioners and the Toccoa City Commission together.

“The city has been waiting to see what the county is willing to do. But I have been told that the city will take care of us and if all else fails then the shelter could be run by the city like so many years ago. I don’t want that to happen because I think the county and city should take care of it together,” Garland said.

Former Commissioner Michelle Ivester made the recommendation that the remaining funding should be decided by the incoming board members.

“I would like to add, you know, we’re in a unique position because as of December 31st you’re going to have a whole new board basically, other than Dennis (Bell) and Debbie (Whitlock), you’re going to have a new majority, I guess I should say. So, what if we did $25,000 right now, and then come January 1st the new board can revisit it, and at that point, Dennis and Debbie and the new three commissioners can make a decision if they want to finish fully funding it or leave it at the $25,000,” she said.

The board will also consider motions to enter into an agreement with the Georgia Department of Transportation and Co-Sponsors Toccoa-Stephens County Airport Authority and City of Toccoa for Airport Engineering Design and Planning Assistance.

Lastly, the Board will consider a motion to enter into an agreement with gWorks for Public Works System Software and Authorize County Administrator to Sign Agreement.

Again, the Stephens County Board of Commissioners will meet on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. inside the Historic Stephens County Courthouse.