Humane Society approves raise for two employees

Published 10:58 am Monday, February 6, 2017

By JOYANNA LOVE/Senior Staff Writer

Two Chilton County Humane Society employees have been recognized for their dedication and hard work with a raise of 25 cents per hour.

Both have recently been moved into new positions at the shelter.

The Humane Society board approved the increases for Brandi Murr and Megan Nicholson during its meeting on Feb. 2.

This brings the employees’ salaries to $7.50 per hour.

“Brandi is actually doing two people’s jobs right now. She cleans the puppy room, and that is an all-day job,” Reece said. “She is also our adoption and rescue coordinator.”

Nicholson has also taken on more responsibilities recently.

“Megan has been moved up to kennel manager, overseeing part-timers and she is supervising volunteers and community service workers,” Reece said.

Neither position has insurance benefits.

“There are no perks. The only thing we can give them is we give them a one week paid vacation after they have been with us a year,” Reece said.

The board president commented that both employees could make more money elsewhere, but “they’re dedicated” to the shelter.

Fundraisers from selling pet related items at the shelter to tumblers and cold drinks at events were discussed during the meeting. The shelter board is also exploring ways to increase the phone lines at the shelter, and cut costs.

The shelter will be preparing for “puppy and kitten season” by purchasing the needed vaccines ahead of time, rather than waiting until the animals are brought to the shelter. In the past, the shelter has had to pay more for shipping because they needed the vaccines right away.

An audience member suggested the shelter consider a rain barrel system to cut down on water costs, and offered to help construct it.

For the month of January, the expenses of the shelter exceeded the income of the shelter by $316.57.

The shelter receives animals from throughout Chilton County. It receives funding from the cities of Clanton, Jemsion and Thorsby as well as the County Commission.

“We don’t currently get any money from Maplesville, and Maplesville brings in almost as many dogs a month as Jemison does,” Reece said.

Maplesville had provided funds in the past when it had animal control.

Board members discussed plans for the annual Easter fundraiser for the shelter. Board member Tracie Robitaille said she had spoken to a FFA teacher at Jemison High School about their students bringing animals for the event’s petting zoo.

Sponsorship opportunities are available for the event. Board president Katherine Reece suggested redesigning the sponsorship T-Shirt. Murr and an audience member volunteered to submit a potential design.

“I would love to have T-shirts that are more specific to the event,” Reece said.

She mentioned a drawing of a dog wearing rabbit ears would be cute.

The shelter raised $3,000 from the event last year. The event will be held April 8, and volunteers are needed.

The Humane Society has also been invited to participate in Thorsby High School’s Farm Day.

“I would I really like to participate in Farm Day, not only just for community involvement and to sell spay neuter certificates, but that sounds like a great place for our barn cats,” Reece said.

Barn cats are feral cats the Human Society has trapped, neutered and received their shots.

“We have very little money in them, so we are willing to give them away as barn cats to people who need mousers for their barns,” Reece said.