Conroe, July 1 – On August 28, 2018, Bill O’Sullivan, Montgomery County’s “Sage,” complimented Precinct 3 Montgomery County Commissioner James Noack for stepping forward and agreeing to purchase with Precinct 3 Commissioner budget funds a $70,000 air-conditioned truck with which to transport animals within the custody of Montgomery County Animal Control.
Animal Shelter Director Aaron Johnson had requested a substantial increase in spending for the Animal Shelter and Animal Control Departments during the Fiscal Year 2019 budget hearing, but the Montgomery County Commissioners Court rejected almost all of his requests, which included $700,000 for air-conditioned Animal Control cages.
O’Sullivan announced Noack’s willingness to fund one of the trucks from his departmental budget during the regular meeting of the Montgomery County Commissioners Court on Tuesday, August 28, 2018:
“Bill O’Sullivan, Precinct 3. I came up here to compliment Commissioner Noack for putting forth the funds for an air conditioned vehicle for the dogs, particularly when they have to go out to Precinct 4 and they have to pick them up. They may be hour after hour out there, making runs with the animals in 100 degree heat in the back of it with a box. An organization I’m involved with is going to try to raise enough money to pay for a second truck. And I think you should look at this, and put your heads together and combine to buy a third. But I think, when we look at the heat that starts in the beginning of May and goes until September, particularly when they’ll be in the back of a truck with no real ventilation for 4 hours, there have been situations where every dog in there, which happened in Harris County, where every dog died. So it’s something that should be looked at.”
In the past two months, O’Sullivan, who is Chairman of the Board of Directors of The Homeless Animal Kindness Society (THANKS), began to ask about the status of the purchase of the air-conditioned truck which already has the funding place through Commissioner Noack. O’Sullivan and his wife, Lynn O’Sullivan, who also serves as a Director and as Secretary of THANKS, discovered that the air-conditioned truck purchase has never occurred, because, according to Noack’s staff, Johnson, the Animal Shelter Director, has not cooperated with or coordinated the purchase.
With summer heat fast approaching, the O’Sullivans and other animal welfare advocates are no longer willing to wait for the uncaring bureaucrats of the Montgomery County government to move.
Lynn O’Sullivan appeared before the Commissioners Court on Tuesday, June 25, 2019, none full months after Noack had agreed to fund the air-conditioned cage purchases, and told the Commissioners Court:
“Lynn O’Sullivan, Precinct 3. By now you should expect that I’m going to talk about animal welfare. But first I’d like to correct the lady. Montgomery County does not have a pound. We have a shelter, if you want to look the definition up.
“Last year at this time in the budget workshop, there was a request from the Animal Shelter for Animal Control to purchase a truck with air-conditioned boxes. That was declined by the full Court. This brought on an onslaught of emotions from the community concerned about animal welfare.
“As a result, there was a commitment to purchase one truck. As of this time, that commitment stands unfulfilled.
“The animals are being transported in a way that I would be charged through the Texas Penal Code with animal cruelty. I stand to be fined up to $4,000 plus jail for doing such a thing. The difference is that I’m a private citizen, but the cruelty is the same.
“A hot box is a hot box no matter who owns the hot box. For whatever reason I don’t care, but it’s not been done.
“I ask with all due respect some one pick up the phone and get this ball rolling.
“Please. Please. Just do it.”
Both Johnson and Noack have made themselves very difficult for private citizens to reach by telephone or otherwise. The best method of reaching them is to call the main County government telephone number 281.354.5511, hit 0, ask for either one of them, then hit about three to four different buttons along the way, and hope that you’ll have an opportunity to leave a message. Good luck.