By Judith Fairly -
This is an election year. In a matter of weeks, local residents will have an opportunity to exercise their right to vote. Historically, the turnout for city elections has been cringingly low, which works in favor of the incumbents. I’m sure those on the City Council who are up for re-election are counting on that.
What is most remarkable about the Weatherford City Council meetings I’ve attended over the course of the past three months is the amount of time the current City Council has devoted to evading questions about events and actions by employees of the Weatherford/Parker County Animal Shelter and making excuses for the City’s inaction via bland platitudes, deferring instead to the City Manager, whose habit of engaging in rambling feats of oration never addresses the questions put to him.
by Lenny Leatherman -
The Humane Society of the United States states on their website that:
“In the 1970s, American shelters euthanized 12-20 million dogs and cats, at a time when there were 67 million pets in homes. Today, shelters euthanize around 4 million animals, while there are more than 135 million dogs and cats in homes. This enormous decline in euthanasia numbers—from around 25 percent of American dogs and cats euthanized every year to about 3 percent—represents substantial progress. We will make still greater progress by working together to strike at the roots of animal overpopulation.”
How does the Weatherford/Parker County Animal Shelter’s kill rate compare to the national average? That’s not an easy question to answer without knowing precisely how the Humane Society made their calculations.
However, facts are stubborn things! And a fact that is seared into my mind that I cannot move past, is that we have people working for the city who can slaughter 30 to 40 helpless adoption ready puppies at one time and act as if all is well at the “shelter”.
I cannot look the other way and pretend that ‘all is well’ when it’s obviously not! We have a serious problem that cannot solve itself, and playing a ‘shell game’ with employees does nothing but exacerbate the problem and infuriate the public!
by Judith Fairly -
When I read about the crisis at the animal shelter back in January,I called City Manager Jerry Blaisdell and Steve Bates, who was then Director of the shelter. I asked what I could do to help. Both of them advised me to become a shelter volunteer.
That was almost 3 months ago. In the interim, the volunteer program was abruptly canceled. Rescue groups were told they couldn’t photograph animals at the shelter in order to network them. Volunteers who have given generous amounts of their time and money over the past six years were no longer welcome.
Councilman Eric Matthews has done exactly what he said he would do – ask the tough questions and demand straight answers. His technique of ‘knowing the answer to half the questions he asks’ has paid huge dividends.
Immediately Matthews began to stir things up, and like a big pile of cow manure when it is stirred, things began to smell! And no, that’s not micro-managing city staff. That is leadership in action! He was looking out for the interest of Weatherford citizens when he exposed the stench of a plan to spend over $8 million on a First Monday/Heritage Park facelift! When questioned about the probability of an acceptable return on that $8.2 million investment in improvements to First Monday/Heritage Park, the City Manager admitted that no study had been done to determine the feasibility of such an undertaking. He could only say in a Parks and Recreation Board meeting that he ‘hopes’ it is successful. The most repeated word in that meeting was we “hope“… Continue reading →
Dear Weatherford Citizens,
I want to take this opportunity to clarify my position as it relates to the issue surrounding Ms. Wilder’s Candidacy for City Council Place 1.
This was not an issue of personal dislike or personal bias toward Ms. Wilder. This was an issue about what was the correct lawful interpretation of the Charter of the City of Weatherford as it relates to the qualifications of a candidate for City Council. Continue reading →