EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA


March 6, 2013

Letter: Danville needs it own animal control officer

To the editor:

Last year, the Town of Danville wholeheartedly supported the citizen petition warrant article to end the regional animal control officer contract with Plaistow and to reinstate the Danville ACO position by passing the warrant article by an overwhelming 418-263 vote.

However, the selectmen are choosing to ignore the town’s directive and have placed a warrant article on the town ballot to “dissolve the petition.” Why in the world are they choosing to ignore the town’s directive?

The petition warrant article passed by such a large margin because the contract with Plaistow was not providing a cost-effective, responsive service. In fact, the hourly rate for the regional ACO services went up from $16 to $21 just after our town vote.

In addition, the service has not been responsive to Danville’s needs. I was Danville’s ACO from 2004-2011 and am currently running for the elected position.

I am constantly being pulled aside and told by numerous Danville residents that their calls are never answered or called upon to help a resident out because of the unanswered calls.

In addition, town records revealed that the Danville police are doing just as many calls as the regional ACO does.

Town records show Danville police handled 93 animal-related calls, and the regional ACO did 92, for a total of 185 calls.

So much for the contract with Plaistow alleviating the burden on the town’s police officers, who have more pressing public safety issues to deal with.

Please vote against the selectmen’s warrant article to dissolve the elected ACO position and tell your friends to vote against it. Send a message to the selectmen that they are obligated to do as the town directs them and not impose their own personal agenda.

Strangely enough one of the selectmen who wrote this warrant article to dissolve the position is also running for the position she wanted to dissolve.

Please vote no on Article 2013-16 and keep the elected animal control position..

Sheila Johannesen


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