Sammie’s Friends, Nevada County continue work toward new animal shelter contract | TheUnion.com

Sammie’s Friends, Nevada County continue work toward new animal shelter contract

Nevada County officials and Sammie's Friends are scheduled to continue contract negotiations today, the latest in a handful of meetings called to hammer out a new animal shelter agreement.

Both sides face a June 30 expiration date for the existing contract. Sheriff's Capt. Jeff Pettitt said he wants the new contract finalized by early June, giving the Board of Supervisors enough time to consider and vote on it.

"We'd like to have it done the first week of June," said Pettitt, who's involved in contract negotiations. "The second week of June at the latest."

Cheryl Wicks, a cofounder of Sammie's Friends, said her organization and the county are close to agreeing on a budget.

"We can't quite come together on the money part, though we're close," Wicks said.

Wicks has said her $743,000 bid for shelter operations is "bare bones." In a Facebook post Sammie's Friends said the county has offered an amount lower than her bid. She countered by suggesting they split the difference. The Sheriff's Office currently is considering the suggestion.

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Pettitt and Wicks declined to give specifics about the proposed budget.

Sammie's Friends intends to use $250,000 of its own funds in addition to what the county provides, Wicks said.

"We're still going to pay for the medical care of the animals," Wicks said, adding that her group doesn't want to shoulder the entire financial burden.

Sammie's Friends was one of two bidders vying for the county's animal shelter contract. A county panel initially recommended Placer County, the second bidder, to get the contract. The decision led to an outpouring of support for Sammie's Friends. The Sheriff's Office, which runs Animal Control, then opted to forego working with Placer County and instead begin negotiations with Sammie's Friends.

To contact Staff Writer Alan Riquelmy, email ariquelmy@theunion.com or call 530-477-4239.