Humane Society board names acting director

Published 10:20 am Friday, June 15, 2018

By JOYANNA LOVE/ Senior Staff Writer

Jennifer Fesmire has been named acting director of the Humane Society of Chilton County.

Fesmire was the rescue coordinator before being approved to this interim position at the June 14 meeting of the Humane Society Board of Directors.

Former director Tanya Terreros resigned on June 12.

Prior to Fesmire being approved as acting director, the salary for acting director/ director was raised to $13 per hour.  Salaries were also raised for assistant director ($11. 50 per hour), Kennel Technician ($8.50 per hour) and office manager ($10 per hour).

The animal shelter’s office manager is working from home for a while and plans to leave the position.

During the meeting, plans to advertise the director position and interview candidates before selecting a new director were announced.

Whoever the new director is will need to have (or complete shortly after being hired) euthanasia certification. The board has discussed getting Fesmire certified in the past, but there was confusion about who was receiving notification of when the classes were. At the June 14 meeting, President Lee Helms said they needed to find out when the next one was. He asked Vice President Kristi Hyche if she received the email notifications for the classes. Hyche said she did not.

Human Society Member Rebecca Harshmann said the next one was scheduled for December. The classes are offered two to three times a year, she said. Hyche said a class can also be set up by special request.

Humane Society members are those who pay the annual membership fee, but do not serve on the board. Board members have official titles (president, vice president, at-large, etc.) and responsibilities. Members can be appointed to committees to assist and support the board. Harshmann was named to the volunteer committee. Member Tina Austin was named to the health and welfare committee.

The board unanimously approved paying Terreros for a week of unused vacation days. Terreros had requested two weeks, since she had signed a document that said the director received two weeks paid vacation and never taken any of them.

Humane Society member and former board president Katherine Reece said a former board had approved this, but a record of the minutes was not available because the laptop the minutes were kept on had crashed.

“The problem isn’t that it wasn’t voted on,” Reece said. “The problem is we only do not have the minutes.”

The copy of the document that new employees sign states employees receive one week paid vacation. The actual one Terreros signed is kept in her file at the shelter, and was not reviewed during the meeting.

“We have been giving employees one week’s vacation after a year for a while now,” board secretary Amy Nicholas said.

Terreros said she had been approved to take two weeks a while ago, but was never able to take it because two employees were let go, leaving the shelter short staffed.

Austin said documentation in the minutes needed to be found of the vote before two weeks of vacation was paid.

Board member Jeff Melton made the motion to approve the pay for one week, stating that if support was found that two weeks had been approved, then an additional week could be added.

Also, during the meeting, the board unanimously approved temporarily discontinuing use of the electronic time logging system for employees because hours were not being logged correctly.