In general, the services provided by the County have been very good. However, over the past five years, the cost for animal care services has increased substantially. In Fiscal Year (FY) 2011-12, the City paid $729,163 for animal care services; in FY 2014-15, the City paid $956,296 for animal care services; and for FY 2015-16, costs are projected to be $1,350,000.
Additionally, due to the age and condition of the existing shelter, the County believes it is now desirable to construct a new animal shelter in which enhanced shelter and care services can be provided. The new Orange County Animal Shelter will be built on 10 acres of land at the former Tustin Marine Base located at the intersection of Armstrong Avenue and Bell Avenue. A Request for Proposal (RFP) was issued in December 2015 for a design/build contract and proposals are currently being evaluated.
The County is asking its 18 contract cities to contribute a majority of the funds to construct the new facility, which will have a maximum cost of $35 million. The County is contributing the land, plus $5 million toward the project. Garden Grove’s share is estimated to be $4,142,755 (see Attachment 1).
Presently, the County is seeking long-term commitments from cities by April 1, 2016. These commitments and related agreements are expected to have a 10-year term, with cities contributions toward the new shelter being financed over the ten-year period. Therefore, in addition to the annual cost for animal care services, the City would be obligated to pay an additional annual payment of approximately $430,828 for the new shelter. The projected cost for FY 2016-17 for animal care services, including the new shelter payment is $1,780,828.
Review of Alternative Animal Care Options
Due to the substantial cost increase over the past several years for animal care services and the County’s request for a long-term commitment toward construction and operation of a new shelter, staff has explored and evaluated potential alternative animal care service options.
The Orange County Humane Society (OCHS) has submitted a proposal and term sheet for the provision of animal care and shelter services to the City (see Attachment 2). According to the proposed terms, animal care and shelter services would be provided at an estimated annual flat rate cost of $290,000 for up to 3,500 animals and $310,000 for up to 3,900 animals for a five year term. The term sheet also includes a one-time financial contribution of up to $25,000 toward the expansion of OCHS facilities for a new drop-off/remote office that would provide additional space to accommodate the City’s animal shelter needs. Shelter service would begin within six months of execution of a formal agreement. The proposal from OCHS does not include field or animal licensing services. Therefore, these services would need to be undertaken by City staff.
Aside from the County and OCHS, there are no other services providers that can accommodate the City’s animal care and shelter needs at this time.