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We love when listeners send feedback, ask questions and even when the heckle us – it’s all part of the fun of being on the radio. Today we received an interesting email:

Comment: I listen to your show every morning.  This morning you had a lady on from the Weld County Humane Society.  She said they were swamped with kittens and dogs and cats.  Tell me,  Weld County is debt free, why don’t they give some funding to the Humane Society to decrease the price of adopting these animals.  I don’t know anyone who will or can pay over a hundred dollars per animal.  This is insane.  I know it includes spay and neutering and shots, but not many seniors could afford this and many would love to adopt………What say you?

First off, we want to say thank you for listening, you have options in the morning and we appreciate you tuning us in.

This question presents an interesting dilemma: the Weld Humane Society is a 501 c3, they are a non-profit organization; the Weld County government is the only county or parish in the United States that has zero debt, why can’t the government provide a little assistance to defer the cost of pet ownership?

I (Tom) view the matter through the lens of “is it the role of government to subsidize non-profit or for-profit organizations?” To me the answer is no. If we are willing to use tax dollars to support the Humane Society, then what is to stop the next wonderful non-profit from asking for tax money? Nothing!

People have the ability to give as much or as little to non-profits as they choose. If more people wanted to see the adoption price of animals go down, then they could give more money. People could also offer to purchase pets for those that cannot afford it.

I have no direct familiarity with the Humane Society budget, but I can still speculate why they charge their current prices:

1. Owning a pet is an expensive responsibility (we have two labs) and if you cannot afford the initial upfront fee then maybe you will not have the financial resources to deal with the animal over its life.

2. As a non-profit, the Humane Society relies on donations, if those donations do not support their overall budget then they have the ability to charge people to recoup their costs. I imagine the price they charge for animals does not cover their cost to care for the animals.

We have the folks from the Humane Society on-air with us every month to help support their mission; we don’t charge because it is a cause we support. However, that does not mean we (I) want my tax dollars supporting their mission. Because of my philosophy I will be opposing the proposal this November in Larimer County to raise taxes for the Larimer Humane Society.

Hope this helps!