By Adam Hocking
MARSHFIELD —A spirited debate among the City Council led to a less than definitive outcome for Marshfield Area Pet Shelter (MAPS) as they asked the Council to make a financial commitment towards building a pet shelter in Marshfield.
The Council approved by a vote of 7-3 to include the shelter for discussion in the 2015 budget. No definite financial commitment was made.
The proposed amount of money the city would contribute, though subject to change when the Council deliberates on the issue in 2015, is $250,000. The overall funding goal for MAPS to build a shelter is about $1.2 million, $130,000 of which they have raised to this point.
Opposed to including the shelter in the 2015 budget were council members Alanna Feddick, Ed Wagner, and Char Smith.
Smith said the amount of money so far raised by MAPS gave her hesitation in allocating funds from the city.
“You want just over a million dollars, and right now you have $130,000, which tells me that the people of Marshfield aren’t as behind this project as you’d like them to be,” Smith said.
Feddick added that she required more information regarding why the shelter is a pressing need for the city.
“I’m very concerned there are far too many questions and not enough answers,” Feddick said. “We better see some actual empirical data and statistics including other proof and evidence instead of just a bunch of emotional heart-tugging.”
Karen Rau, the president of MAPS, said that the community has a moral obligation to support this project.
“Do we want to be a community that condones the senseless killing of innocent animals, or do we want to be proactive and pride ourselves on advocating for these animals and demonstrate the morals, values, compassion our community is built on?” Rau said.
Council member Tom Buttke voiced his support for the project, arguing that without a shelter Marshfield could face negative consequences.
“I think it’s a very worthy project, and it is a problem, and it’s only going to get worse if we don’t take care of this problem,” Buttke said.