Commission debates animal shelters’ closing

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JACKSBORO—Several are raising the question of when the Adrion W. Baird Animal Center will reopen.
Among the voices is county resident Jim Slusher.
“Four weeks ago a commitment was made, the animal shelter would open in two to three weeks,” he said. “This hasn’t happened.”
Slusher criticized the commission for providing funds for a shelter that currently isn’t operating.
The shelter closed April 11 after a viral Internet video surfaced alleging several malpractices there.
County Mayor William Baird didn’t provide an answer to when the shelter would reopen, but said it would open when it opened.
When County Commissioner Beverly Hall expressed dissatisfaction with his answer, he told her that was the only answer she would receive.
When the commission discussed reopening the animal shelter in June, Baird told the commission he was awaiting findings from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation. The county mayor’s office doesn’t know if criminal charges will be filed, but administrative decisions about the center will only be made after the TBI report is finalized because Baird doesn’t want potential criminal charges to be filed against county workers after the reopening.
Hall said Baird told the commission he would reopen the shelter regardless of the status of the investigation.
“I said I’d try,” Baird said.
Campbell County Deputy Mayor David told the commission Center Director Betty Crumbley’s TBI interview—scheduled this week—was the final interview in the investigation.
An Animal Control Advisory Board meeting is scheduled July 16 for 5 p.m. at LaFollette City Hall.