BARC UPDATE 7/23/09

The Mayor approved “change agent”, Gerry Fusco, to “turn around” BARC.  This person has absolutely NO animal sheltering experience whatsoever.  We believe this is a complete waste of money and resources.  The city should hire people who actually have experience in transforming high kill shelters, such as BARC, into No Kill shelters……. eople such as Nathan Winograd who actually do have experience in the area and would charge the city almost 1/10 of the amount the Mayor has promised Mr. Fusco.

If you are as appalled about this waste of time and money as we are, PLEASE SPEAK UP TO YOUR COUNCIL MEMBER NOW. The Mayor has paid Mr. Fusco part of his fee, but city council has NOT yet voted to pay him the rest of the money.  Council has to approve the rest of this expenditure. This contract will likely be on the agenda in the next two weeks. The new agendas are posted on the City of Houston web site on Friday.

Please email, write  letters and CALL City Council Members.  Please ask them to vote AGAINST Gerry Fusco’s contract. We could get this voted down if enough noise is made.   FYI: You can leave voice mail at night that they will have to pick up the next day.

Talking points are below if you need them:
* You are appalled that the city would spend $200,000 on yet ANOTHER consultant who has NO ANIMAL SHELTERING experience whatsoever.

* How can Fusco turn BARC around when he has no experience in the subject matter at all?

* How about investing in someone who actually does have experience in successfully turning high kill shelters such as BARC into No Kill shelters?  They could hire Nathan Winograd for almost 1/10 of that amount and he actually HAS experience in successfully turning shelters like BARC around.

* Perhaps this is just another way to control what information gets out…just like MCV who said they were not allowed to say certain things in the meeting. This was obviously because of who was paying their tab.

* Some people have been trying to get a commitment from the city for just a few thousand dollars so that BARC could have an offsite adoption location in a high traffic retail space. Do you know how many locations that $200k would pay for? Do you know how many animals would get adopted if BARC had adoption sites in high traffic locations all over the city?

* Do you know how many spay/neuters $200k could pay for especially in impoverished areas like the Corridor of Cruelty?
 
* Do you know how much food, heartguard or other services $200k could buy that would help keep pets in their homes, instead of being dumped at a  shelter? (a friend said she kept 12,000 animals out of her shelter in one year by offering these types of services and other advice).

* The MOST IMPORTANT element of a successful shelter is a compassionate, hard working bureau chief.  The city needs to hire Bonnie Ford as the Bureau Chief and then wholeheartedly support her efforts at BARC.

*The city needs to remove BARC from the Dept of Health and Human Services. It should be its own a stand-alone department. The Health Dept has proven that it cannot run BARC effectively.

* And most importantly if they think that we are going to be quiet for the next 6 months while they spend $200k on this idea, they should think again.  We will be speaking out about BARC and the city’s failures right up until election day and beyond.

We must stand together and DEMAND change.
Contact City Council today.

Contact Info for City of Houston / BARC personnel

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