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Blessed are the merciful

Since my election, I have been addressing animal neglect and abuse issues in El Paso County. Many of you may remember the horrible incident on Funk Road, when severely abused and neglected animals were rescued by SAINT Animal Rescue and the Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region.It is appalling that anyone would abandon helpless animals anywhere in our county. These animals usually end up starving, injured or killed by motor vehicles, or they begin packing with other abandoned animals. Not only is it inhumane, it also is against the law!I encourage those of you who may be considering abandoning your animals to please drop them off at the Humane Society or SAINT Animal Rescue in eastern El Paso County.The Colorado Revised Statutes are clear: A person who knowingly, recklessly, or with criminal negligence overworks, torments, deprives an animal of necessary sustenance, unnecessarily or cruelly beats any animal, or allows the animal or animals to be housed in a manner that results in chronic or repeated serious harm, carries or confines an animal in or upon any vehicles in a cruel or reckless manner, or fails to provide the animal or animals with proper food, drink or protection from the weather, or otherwise mistreats or neglects any animal will be prosecuted.After visiting with Sheriff Terry Maketa, Dr. Wes Metzler of the Humane Society and Scott Dutcher of the Colorado State Animal Control Division, it appears as if one group of citizens who live outside of the county’s animal control area are trying to address issues of neglect and animal abuse. SAINT Animal Rescue is an example of citizens working together as a team, offering their time, talents and treasures to save neglected and abandoned animals.To properly address the animal neglect and abuse issues in the unincorporated areas of El Paso County, a town hall meeting is scheduled for Aug. 22 at 7 p.m. at the Calhan Veterans of Foreign Wars Building on 5th Street. Panel members include El Paso County Commissioner Chairman Denise Hisey, El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa, Colorado State Animal Control Director Scott Dutcher, Dr. Wes Metzler of HSPPR, Jerry Renick of SAINT and me.However, for this to be a productive and successful meeting, we need you.Another issue of concern in the county is the recent confirmation of the plague in prairie dog colonies in eastern El Paso County. A representative from the El Paso County Department of Health and Environment, along with a representative from the Colorado Department of Agriculture, will attend the meeting to explain how to protect your family and animals from being infected by the plague.If you have any questions or concerns about this issue or any other issue, call 719-238-5600 or visit my Web site at

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