Placer SPCA in search of larger facility

Bigger space will allow shelter to accept more animals and house them longer
By: Sena Christian, The Press Tribune
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The Placer Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is looking to relocate to a larger facility by the end of 2012 to expand its services and increase its capacity to house animals.

Placer SPCA currently operates in a 10,000-square-foot city-owned facility on about one acre of land on Corporation Yard Road in Roseville. The nonprofit organization’s goal is to move to a 2.5- to 3-acre space.

“We’ve been talking about wanting a new facility when I started here 10 years ago,” said CEO Leilani Fratis (last name formerly Vierra).

The organization took in 4,200 animals last year, she said, and a new space will allow for the accommodation of more animals who can be housed for a longer period of time.

“We house adoptable animals until they find homes,” Fratis said. “It’s no longer the temporary holding facilities like old shelters used to have.”

Unlike Placer SPCA, those kinds of shelters house animals for a short amount of time for adoption or until they are euthanized.

Modern animal shelters are designed similarly to hospitals to ensure that animals remain behaviorally and emotionally healthy while they wait for a permanent home.


Fratis said Placer SPCA offers programs and services “far better than the limitations of our facility.” Her organization wants a modern shelter with drainage, air systems and other amenities needed to keep animals longer.

Last year, the organization opened the Pet Adoption and Resource Center in Auburn, which houses up to 30 cats and six dogs. They opened the center in part to ease overcrowding in Roseville and to take a step toward their vision that every adoptable companion animal in the county has a home.

Placer SPCA was founded in 1973 in Auburn and relocated to its current site in Roseville in 1995.

The organization receives funds from the city to provide services, such as the sheltering of animals delivered to Placer SPCA by city staff and Roseville residents, animal quarantine and disposal of dead animals.

The Roseville City Council approved an agreement with Placer SPCA during Wednesday’s meeting for a total of $630,600 for the 2012 calendar year for routine shelter care and other services.

State law requires local governments to provide a dog licensing/rabies control program and animal shelter services, said Roseville Police Department spokeswoman Dee Dee Gunther. State laws also govern the operation of public shelters, for instance, how long they must hold animals before euthanizing them.

The city contracts with Placer SPCA instead of operating its own shelter or contracting with Placer County Animal Services, which runs a center in Auburn.

“Placer County’s animal shelter doesn’t have enough room for Roseville’s shelter needs, and it would be very costly for Roseville to build and operate our own shelter,” Gunther said. “(Placer SPCA) is located right here in our city, which is convenient for our residents.”

Gunther said animal control and shelter services are essential to protecting public health and safety.

“We must have a place to take stray, abused or unwanted animals, quarantine animals that are vicious or potentially vicious and posing a threat to public safety, and have a place to dispose of dead animal carcasses,” she said.

The city’s contract with Placer SPCA covers these legally mandated services. The organization holds animals longer than the legal minimum holding period, and they offer low-cost spay and neuter programs. These services are paid for by private donations and grants.

The city’s $630,600 contract includes $621,000 for caring for up to 3,000 live animals annually and $9,600 for the rendering of dead animals. The city will also pay credits for shelter services above 3,001 animals, and will pay $120,000 as a facility relocation fee, to be paid at a time to be determined in a future agreement.

Here’s a look at some other items approved during the Jan. 4 council meeting:

Secret Ravine fish passage improvement project agreement amendment: The city incurred additional expenses for extended work performed by design engineer Waterways Consulting due to vandalism to onsite dewatering equipment and unexpected rain, which damaged the creek diversion dam. This delayed demolition of the bridge and installation of improvements. The project cost increased from $19,725 to $20,627 and the city will be reimbursed for the added fees by a Proposition 84 grant from the California Department of Water Resources.

Ford F150 XL trucks award of purchase: The city will purchase four Ford trucks from Downtown Ford to replace previously used vehicles in the Environmental Utilities water division, wastewater collections division, parks maintenance division, and parks and recreation open space division. Total amount is $82,285 and funding is included in the Vehicle Replacement Fund.

Placer County law enforcement realignment: The council agreed to a request by Roseville Police Chief Daniel Hahn to advocate frontline law enforcement funding using A.B. 109 funds. The council also adopted a resolution in support of using realignment funds to hire additional officers to provide more supervision for serious offenders released in Placer County.

A.B. 109 shifts responsibilities of incarceration for felonies, and post-release supervision, from the state to local and county jurisdictions to address state prison overcrowding. The legislation authorizes counties to establish a committee to develop a plan to allocate state funds to house state inmates. Placer County received $3.1 million through the 2012 fiscal year.

Sena Christian can be reached at Follow her on Twitter at SenaC_RsvPT.