Culver City Observer
September 6 - 12, 2007
Letters to the Editor
At the last City Council meeting of August 27, 2007 in Culver City Mayor Allan Corlin had the effrontery to attack Friends of Culver City Animals (FCCA) for not bringing in enough revenue to fund local animal services in Culver City. In particular, he took exception to FCCA's voluntary efforts to raise awareness of the animal licensing program by criticizing FCCA for not going door-to-door, to every home in Culver City, to inform residents of this new ordinance.
Of all the gall! FCCA voluntarily agreed, at the request of the city, to assist Culver City in informing the public of this ordinance. FCCA members spent countless hours in the hot sun trying to breathe life into an ordinance that was ill conceived and flawed from its inception, since it had no enforcement mechanism.
Not one word of gratitude was heard for FCCA from the Mayor, the Council, or any member of the City's staff. The failure to bring in enough revenue, by way of the new licensing ordinance, was the justification for the City Council to once again turn down efforts to bring local animal services to Culver City.
Since when are taxpayers supposed to become volunteers and do the city's job of raising revenue? We pay taxes for our government services. Are we to assume Culver City would go without sanitation facilities, street maintenance, public works, police, or a fire department because its residents failed to go door to door to raise revenue? Yet, it is the preposterous position of Mayor Corlin, and a majority of the City Council, that local animal control cannot be implemented unless it is totally self-supporting. If that is the case, why are we paying taxes? Aren't municipal services 100% tax-supported entities? And what of the obvious fact that Culver City is already paying a large sum of taxpayer dollars to the County for inefficient and deplorable animal related services?
It is absolute nonsense to suggest on the one hand that it is acceptable to have taxpayers pay for a poorly administered County run animal service program, while on the other hand arguing a replacement City-based program must be self supporting.
Mayor Corlin, Councilman Rose, and others have for years asked for documentation to support the feasibility of bringing local animal control to Culver City. Members of FCCA spent months gathering the impressive and overwhelming evidence in support of this position. In addition, these members of the Council said that they wanted to hear from residents through telephone calls, e-mails, petitions, declarations, etc. This was done, and in spades. It included a cost analysis by a Certified Public Accountant. In response, FCCA was the recipient of arrogant and condescending remarks by these individuals dismissing outright the very materials they had requested, with one member of the Council boasting that he never even read the detailed report he had requested.
Additionally, the Council took the opportunity at its last session to extend the contract with the County for animal control services for five years. This was done in spite of all the speakers in the audience, including veterinarians, who urged a one-year extension only. Not one reason was given to justify why the County was being rewarded with a five-year contract in spite of its dismal performance. Was this done, some have asked, in order to tie the hands of future members of the City Council for the next five years?
A majority of the residents of Culver City have repeatedly asked for a change from County-based animal control services to local animal control services. The will of the majority has repeatedly been ignored. In future elections, the voters of Culver City will have an opportunity to elect or reject individuals based on their platform and record. The voters of this community will remember the candidates' record, and be reminded of it as well. The 2,000 members of FCCA intend to be a voice in these elections.