Hays residents will now have to pay a higher fee if their animal gets picked up the police department. At Thursday night’s Hays City Commission meeting, Hays Police Chief Don Scheibler asked that the city allow the police department to charge higher fees that are more in-line with what the department is charged by the local animal shelter to house the lost animals.
Previously, the department could only charge residents $20 per day per animal . Now, the department can charge the actual cost of boarding, which is $25 per day per animal, to prevent losing money with each impounded pet.
According to information presented at the meeting, in 2012 the City of Hays collected $2,470.00 in fees from owners of dogs and cats that were impounded by the Hays Police Department. Had the City of Hays had an ordinance that required the pet owner to pay the actual cost for caring for the animal, the Hays Police Department would have collected an additional $930.00.
Chief Don Scheibler added that if the owner does not claim the animal within 4 days, ownership is surrendered to the shelter, and the full financial responsibility for boarding falls on the city.
“We’re losing money on this, and I wish to tell you that there was a way to make money but there just isn’t. It’s a service we provide to the community, in terms of caring for the dogs and cats of the community.”
The proposal was unanimously approved by the commission, with the new rates effective right away.
Pet owners are able to license their pets at the city office at 1507 Main St, which would help officers reunite lost pets with their owners in a timely manner. Also, any pet that is not licensed in the city that is impounded would result in an additional fee being imposed on the pet owner at the time of pickup.