Paying SPCA per Stray Animal

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PLAINS TOWNSHIP -- Municipalities in Luzerne County may have to start paying for every stray animal that is dropped off at the SPCA.

Wilkes-Barre city officials call the plan a potential budget breaker.

The SPCA of Luzerne County says it has fallen on hard times, with a deficit in the six figures. In order to take care of its animals, they say they need to start charging municipalities for every stray cat or dog that is dropped off -- about 2,100 strays a year.

"Prices have gone up. labor price, insurance, gas, virtually everything we do and touch has gone up in price, so this program was born out of necessity," explained executive director Todd Hevner.

The program would have each municipality pay $100 per stray animal if they sign up for a one-year contract. Based on those numbers, Wilkes-Barre officials say it could cost the city thousands.

"It appears it would cost us about $70,000 a year, which is almost a mill of taxes, so we have a big problem with that," said city administrator Ted Wampole.

Financial records show the nonprofit made a net gain of about $1 million over recent years, while the city is struggling to pay its bills.

"Our argument is we're trying to keep the lights on. We're trying to hold taxes down. We're trying to pay all of our bills, we're struggling. We're an early intervention program and you are making money," Wampole said.

However, the SPCA says only a small percentage of that money can be used for everyday expenses, which is why this fee is necessary.

"It's not an open-ended withdrawal. If you do begin to withdrawal down, you then begin to negatively affect the longevity of the organization as a whole," Hevner said.

The SPCA says it would not accept stray animals dropped off from municipalities that have not signed the contract. This program would take effect on January 1, 2018.


  • 😡

    First of all, why the heck are they saying you have to sign a contract? What does they contract say? Second, $100 bucks is just totally ridiculous. No one is gonna pay that and now there will be strays running all over cuz who in their right mind is gonna pay that for trying to do the right thing. It’s nothing but the SPcA being greedy. To come out and say they have a million dollars and say they can’t touch it for everyday expenses is just outrageous! That’s like someone saying they won the lottery and want to go on welfare cuz they ” can’t touch the money for everyday expenses”. Get a clue SPCA. Just another scam. Now there will be animals running all over cuz no one will pay that AND sign some stupid contract. Shameful!!!

  • Life sucking parasites

    Put them to sleep on the spot. No wonder we’re awash in senseless animal laws meant to bring in revenue for these parasites at the spca

  • DG1959 (@nep1959)

    If they didn’t pay exuberant salaries to their higher ups there. There would be no problems. Look back and see what they paid Vince Sweeney. Myself would never donate 1 dollar to the SPCA.

  • CeeMe

    I don’t see how this can work. I think the problem needs to be handled from the side of the irresponsible pet owner, instead of having everyone else pay for them. One hundred per stray seems a bit much. Why not try licensing cats and dogs and having stricter fines for those who abandon them?

  • Robert

    Ok, I’ve read this several times now without having to blink, fidget, groan or loose eye contact with the screen due to involuntary convulsions. Am I supposed to accept this net gain is in some sort of escrow that cannot be accessed in order to maintain daily operations? Roflmao, word salad without the croutons is an awful forgiving response on your part Alice. We need to get a copy of this nonprofit’s bylaws! On a brighter note, maybe time to invest in a Asian food specialty takeout and delivery business. Yea, bring on the thumbs down for that I know its coming. Poor ‘Spot’ either way. Ironic that taxed out people asked to pay more resulting in more homeless animals followed by higher taxes. Sounds just like a toilet flushing don’t it?

    • Robert

      So is this gain bound over to pay the executives for the next 10 years regardless of the SPCA’s fate? AWsome!
      We need to open one of these and a Asian specialty food stand. What? It’s pork! Nothing to see here, keep moving!

  • Lance

    If you got a million dollars and you claim that you can’t touch it for everyday expenses. What nonsense is this ? They send our appeals for money all the time. It never states that it wont be used for expenses. Stop trying to soak taxpayers and use the extra money!

  • TrumpTrainOne

    as a responsible pet owner I say this. There are children going hungry every day. We need to choose pets or kids are going to eat!

  • warningfakenews

    β€œIt’s not an open-ended withdrawal. If you do begin to withdrawal down, you then begin to negatively affect the longevity of the organization as a whole,” Hevner said.


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