Supervisors to vote on $41,500 settlement with euthanized dog’s owner
September 13, 2013
The owner of a dog euthanized by Carson City Animal Services against her wishes could receive $41,500 in a settlement if she signs a waiver of claims and the Board of Supervisors approves the deal Thursday.
The shih tzu, Rollie, was put down July 30 after being turned over to Animal Services five days earlier. A new code section governing animal care at the pound says Animal Services should board such animals for 10 days at the owner's expense.
Owner Jeraldine Archuleta tried to recover the unlicensed dog July 26-27 but could not pay the fees due right away, according to the city. She asked for more time to pay.
According to the agenda for Thursday's meeting, the new Animal Services code, adopted in May 2013, includes a provision for hardship cases.
It states that if an owner can document hardship, fees for the dog's recovery may be waived by approval of Animal Services' manager or director.
The item that will go before the city's governing board requests authorization for payment of the $41,500 upon Archuleta's "execution of a written settlement, waiver of claims and hold harmless …"
It also makes clear the payment would amount to a full settlement of all existing and any potential future claims and causes of action or damages against the city, as well as its current or former employees.
Archuleta made her case about the dog's euthanasia public via a letter to the editor in the Nevada Appeal, prompting city government to close the Animal Services pound for three days for the stated reason of training personnel.
The city subsequently parted company with Animal Services manager Gail Radtke and has hired an interim manager. Radtke has sued the city, claiming she was unfairly let go.
The euthanasia controversy developed at the same time as an effort by a separate, private-sector group called the Carson Animal Services Initiative to raise money to help the city build a new shelter for dogs and other stray animals.
Archuleta's lawyer, Cal Dunlap, declined to comment Thursday. He said he'd do so after the city and Archuleta have reached an agreement.