The possibility of an animal shelter that would be the combined efforts of Conway and Faulkner County could get a further nudge when the council considers a resolution that would levy two-tenth’s mill on taxable real estate.
A consideration of a municipal animal shelter has been in the works for months, gestating within the Courts and Public Safety Committee of the Faulkner County Quorum Court. County and city officials have met several times in order to iron out details of a possible coordinated effort.
Though there is a voluntary tax that has been collected since 2005 for the purpose of funding a county shelter, committee members believe the amount is insufficient to sustain the department. The fund sits at about $600,000.
Faulkner County Judge Preston Scroggin said earlier this year that officials with the county and the Conway have been meeting on occasion since before 2004 to discuss possible solutions for animal control, but a plan had not yet been agreed upon.
The resolution is one of seven that the council will consider during its regularly scheduled meeting at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in the District Court Building. All the resolutions deal with assigning a certain percentage of millage toward the maintenance of cemeteries, public recreation and playgrounds, general funds and revenues and pensions and relief funds for Conway policemen, fire fighters and non-uniformed employees.
County officials have stated that partnering with the city for the shelter is the only viable option financially. “If we can’t partner with the city, I don’t see a long term solution,” Scroggin said. “The revenue stream isn’t enough to start our own shelter.”
The Faulkner County Sheriff’s Office responds to “countless” animal related calls in the county according to Major Andy Shock. Shock said deputies frequently rely on two Faulkner County residents to take possession of homeless animals.