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Commission curbs pet fee proposal

POSTED: November 18, 2009 4:00 a.m.

Dawson County commissioners have made it clear they are not interested in collecting fees from pet owners.

  

Brandon Mills, a local veterinarian, suggested the county impose a $10 fee for all dogs and cats in the county in an effort to offset animal control costs.

  

The county pays about $180,000 to the local animal shelter for animal control services, according to Dawson County Manager Kevin Tanner.

  

The commission considered the option Nov. 5, but did not vote on the proposal. Commissioner Mike Connor’s motion died from a lack of support.

  

Connor’s failed motion identified the fee as voluntary “that encourages responsibility.”

  

“Animal control is there because we have animal owners,” he said.

  

Tanner told the board the county did not have the manpower to enforce the fee.

  

Neighboring Forsyth County has a similar pet fee, which is collected when dogs and cats visit a veterinarian or when they receive their annual rabies vaccination.

  

Mills told commissioners last week that each vet in Dawson County had agreed to collect the fee during office visits.

  

While the commission did not go along with the plan, Chairman Mike Berg said the county needs to “look for ways to have some way to pay for what we’re doing.”

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