Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Feed A Rescued Animal

This is pretty simple... Please tell ten friends to tell ten today! The Animal Rescue Site is having trouble getting enough people to click on it daily to meet their quota of getting free food donated every day to abused and neglected animals.

It takes less than a minute (How about 20 seconds) to go to their site and click on the purple box "fund food for animals" for free. This doesn't cost you a thing.

Their corporate sponsors/advertisers use the number of daily visits to donate food to abandoned/neglected animals in exchange for advertising.

Here's the web site! Pass it along to people you know.

The Animal Rescue Site

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Bullsh** U - Our Great Fall Courses

The following great fall courses will be offered:

There will be no journalism offered. However, if you have passed Building Your Ego 101, Big Fish-Little Pond Politics, Small Town Theanthropic Theorum (4) or can clep either Advanced Material & Social Palm Greasing or Co-opting the Fourth Estate AND be willing to offer either monetary or in-kind remuneration, the Dean of Journalism will be certain to print ONLY what you want in the school paper.

This course will cover how to convince the people to do whatever you wish. The classroom doors for this course will be closed at all times and note taking is strictly prohibited. All course work, including mock meetings, networking sessions with the Political Communication, Journalism and Public Oratory Skills students, as well as the final test, will be oral ONLY.

You will learn to fluently curse constituents, how to effectively slam phones down on callers, master the regal art of hand waving for a variety of political uses such as calling the school security to your aid and removal of unwanted individuals from your presence, master blank stares for use in public meetings, learn the fine art of public temper tantrums, and how to quickly issue orders for such necessary political communiques such as deleting of files, disappearance of paperwork, stonewalling requested information, revision of public meeting reports and total recreation of paper trails. Prerequisite courses: Public Oratory Skills, History of the One Man Dynasty OR Women of Poor Self-esteem and their Role in Politics and Fund Raising and at least one agricultural lecture course, i.e., 'How to Get Funding for Your Own Personal Shelter', 'The Expected Number of Animal Deaths Acceptable Ratio for Development of a Dog Park' or 'How to Convince the Neighbors You're Doing Something Good For the Animals When You Have No Animal Skills or Knowledge'.

Learn how to stage hostile take-overs of non-profit organizations and what it takes to successfully insert your family, friends or business associates, to whom you owe or promise favors, into jobs that were held by others. Master the art of working with those who have ulterior motives, questionable ethics, hidden connections and a degree in Self-Serving Hubris.

The first half of this course covers the small, but interesting, tribe of the Wannabe. Learn their social mores and taboos such as, how wealth DOES make a difference in the Wannabe culture, their back scratching ritual, the annual suck-up festival and their convoluted and incestuous relationships with their nearest neighbor, the Iknowiam, a hostile tribe with a fanatic religion that emphasizes self-Godlike delusion, shunning, repression of those not of their group, denial and falsehood. The final for this course will involve a paper comparing the two societies and their interrelatedness and how it adversely affects/effects the other populace in the region, both human and animal.

This course will cover how to build a solid relationship with any of the media, how to suppress information by networking, how to create disinformation that really works, as well as how many times one must repeat a lie to make it truth.

Our Theater Department wishes to announce that try-outs for the part of the Asp in 'Cleopatra' will be held after the holidays (this is a woman's part).
Also, that they are in need of an ass for their holiday tableau.


Friday, October 19, 2007

"Shut the fuck up, you creepy asshole"

This verbatim quote was made by Mayor Donna Stebbins yesterday in response to a citizen who called her.

The Great Falls Animal Shelter staff arrived at work to find a cat in a crate upon the front doorstep. How long it had been there is anyone's guess. Attached to the crate was a note which read, "Please take care of Mishka, I can not do it any longer" (paraphrase).

A local individual involved in a private cat rescue group intent on keeping cats out of the shelter due to the high number of kills was given the cat by shelter personnel. The cat was sitting in a crate filled with feces, covered by it and no one at the shelter had taken it out of the crate to aid it, despite the fact no one was certain how long it had been IN the crate to begin with. The Shelter personnel had no idea how long it had been without water or food, either.

The individual called the mayor to complain about the Shelter's inhumane treatment of the cat. A witness heard the complaint voiced, then heard Mayor Donna Stebbins say, "Shut the fuck up, you creepy asshole"and hang up on the individual.

The mayor's caring and concerned reply as regards the cat and its treatment at the Great Falls Animal Shelter is indicative of the quality of response by our city administrators. The fact that Stebbins is an official of Spay of the Falls, which is now a subgroup of the Animal Foundation of Great Falls, and ALL claim to care for the welfare of the animals leaves me very worried indeed and many, who now know of this incident, extremely angry.

Donna Stebbins and the City pushed hard and fast to get control of that animal shelter. The Foundation seemed to be all for the city running the shelter as evidenced by witnesses of private meetings and "quotes" given to the Tribune. This is what these two entities consider to be better animal care than the HSCC?

Let me get this straight...

This is what animal welfare in Great Falls has come to under the umbrella of the Foundation, the official of the city AND Spay of the Falls, and the Great Falls Animal Shelter?

"At least now we're down to two" animal welfare groups in the city, she (Cerny) said. "...the foundation's goal is for the shelter to try to find homes for all adoptable animals."

The mayor's behavior and response then, must be the "high standards" Cerny spoke about in the Trib article.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007



October 20th, Saturday
6 p.m.
University of Great Falls Theater Building
1301 20th St South


The Citizens' Meeting Where You Can Ask Any Question of the Candidates

Candidates/Incumbents Confirmed to Attend:

Susan Kahn
Ed McKnight
Stuart Lewin
Mary Jolley
Larry H. Steele

Declined participation due to previous commitment:

Bill Bronson
Diane Kuntz
Elna Hensley

No response as of this date:

Donna Stebbins

Friday, October 12, 2007

Raining Cats & Dogs - Can the Umbrella Take It?

The Foundation has taken Spay of the Falls under its umbrella. What will they do? Will they make Gloria LaMott ala Spay clean up its act?

Gloria LaMott and Donna Stebbins are two of the officials for Spay of the Falls. This group was originally under the auspices of Montana Spay Neuter Task Force.

However, Gloria threw out the MSTF book of procedures and decided to wing it. She does this frequently. Consider that time she decided to publicly announce that the vast majority of Polejewski's dog would need to be put down as they were vicious. Two trainers did temperament testing and she was so wrong. But, it didn't stop her from making her pronouncement from on high.

In May, she opted NOT to follow the mandate in the book that ALL animals must be vaccinated prior to the Spay Clinic. A vaccination clinic should be offered a few weeks prior to spaying.

Because of her unwillingness to follow safety procedures for all animals, 90 cats died as a result of a fast spreading disease. LaMott tries hard to foist that little killing spree off on an HSCC shelter cat and claims this is why no more shelter cats will be taken into her spay clinics.

REALLY? And just how did she determine it was an HSCC cat? Autopsies?

The only thing which can be shown, clearly, is Ms LaMott chose NOT to follow the procedure set up for the health, safety and care of all animals. Her hubris resulted in 90 cats' deaths.

"The foundation wants to be sure that whatever group is picked to run the new shelter will be fiscally responsible and will meet high standards, Cerny said." (Trib article Tues. 9, 2007)

Well, I guess the Foundation is hoping to pull in more money by taking Spay of the Falls under its wing. And, I guess that killing off 90 cats due to inability to follow health & safety procedures constitutes a high standard. Is it the killing standard attempting to be reached by the current shelter and/or the future one?

Hmmm......Let me try to recall what it is I said at the City Commission meeting, June 19th...Oh, yeah! "It is my personal opinion that what is transpiring here this evening is a sub-rosa or behind-the-scenes agenda in which specific people are manipulating the bid and awarding process for personal gain, closed corporation tactics and ignoring fiscal responsibility and animal welfare...
All this put together leads me to one conclusion. The bid award is co-opted and possibly already predetermined by an unseen committee which is interested in assuring the Foundation complete control and the city the ability to circumvent or ignore actual bid and awarding procedures. The Directorship of the new shelter seems to be a foregone conclusion if Ms. LaMott’s statements are to be taken as truth. "

Gloria LaMott, Donna Stebbins, The Foundation. Now they are all together as predicted. Can that umbrella withstand the hail storm?

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

13 Dogs Killed for Mayor & Commissioners' Tour


In ONE day.

13 dogs killed the day before the Mayor and Commissioners' tour of the shelter.

Great Falls Animal SHELTER.

The Tribune didn't report THAT.

The Mayor says all looks GREAT.

"Lockerby said the city has been working to improve the shelter's records and better statistics will be available shortly." (Tribune, Tuesday 9, 2007)

The Foundation certainly isn't saying or doing anything about it.

So much for care of the the animals.

Liars & Traitors Beware - Oh, My!

Interesting Trib Article yesterday ("Alignment unites two animal welfare groups" Richard Ecke). I was inundated with discussion about it and I thought I'd quote a few observations here for you:
"Saw the article about the animal shelter in today’s paper and Ric’s comments. Think some people are trying to save their asses before the election?"

"Does the Foundation believe we don’t remember that they began so that the HUMANE SOCIETY could have a new shelter?"

“If I ever doubted that the City and the GF Animal Foundation had an agenda, this article put it to rest. Talk about a white-wash job.”

“When a group or person stays silent, like the Foundation has, it means only ONE thing – guilt. "At least now we're down to two animal welfare groups in the city, she (Cerny) said.” That says it all about what the Foundation wants. Control.”

In the Trib article today, Grove claims, “The takeover was supposed to last three to six months, but at the three-month point, Police Chief Corky Grove said it may last longer.” What’s with THAT? At the meeting in June the City said it was a one month extension. Boy, did YOU ever call it right!!!”

“I want to know about the bid and how it was handled. You maintained back in June that Stebbins and LaMott, along with the City & Foundation, had a plan to take over the Humane Society for their own gain. Here’s the proof in black-and-white.”

"Eventually we hope to turn animal control over to another entity," Grove said last week.” There it is, as clear as day. The city got rid of the HSCC and now the ONLY entity left is, TA-DAH, The Animal Foundation. Talk about corrupt.”

“I hope the Spay people know what they are doing. I don’t think this is a smart move to join with the AF. It’s pretty easy to see that they’ll be painted with the same dirt if they’re not separate and careful.”

"I think that they are all in collusion together, and the truth will come to light."

“What is this? ‘Cerny said the foundation has not promised to build a no-kill shelter because that's not practical. She added that the foundation's goal is for the shelter to try to find homes for all adoptable animals. Some animals are too sick or don't have the right temperament to be placed in homes, police officials said.’ Not practical? Nothing that’s worth anything is easy. How not practical is a life? People are NOT idiots, contrary to this group’s opinion. We know a “No Kill” shelter means the really sick or vicious animal will NOT be able to continue. But, it DOES NOT MEAN that we will allow animals to die so that these people can clean runs or open a dog park.”

Cerny says that it’s not their “mission to run the shelter.” No, that’s right. It was their MISSION to raise funds for the HSCC. They stopped doing that to raise funds for their own publicity. What else will they stop doing? I bet they won’t stop conniving with the City, Stebbins and LaMott.

“Is Cerny nuts? Does she not know that everyone in this town talks and within a couple of days most of us had heard about James, the Foundation, the HSCC and the presentation that practically was a threat of future problems if the HSCC didn’t merge? Of course the Foundation doesn’t want to merge with the current HSCC board, it looks like they can’t be manipulated, threatened and we are all watching them now. And the Foundation better go look at other cities where part of the money collected for new shelters is used to help the old shelter. Otherwise, WHY EVEN RAISE MONEY? If the old shelter doesn’t need physical and financial help, why replace it? Ask yourself that about this situation. I have to agree with you, what IS the Foundation doing with our money if they’re not helping the animals NOW?"

"I like to be logical in reviewing the current situation in order to come to conclusions. Here is what I perceive;
The Foundation was begun to raise funds for the HSCC new animal shelter
The Foundation stopped doing that about 2 years after they began and started to raise funds for themselves.
They split off from the HSCC
Gloria LaMott made a public statement about the dog problem out in Ulm and said something about most of them should be put down which HSCC didn't authorize to be said.
Gloria LaMott was subsequently released/removed/or departed from the HSCC Board of Directors
Donna Stebbins and Gloria LaMott are friends.
You read a prepared statement in June, show how many people who work for the city have connections to the Animal Foundation. You surmise the possible intent is to give the management of the shelter to another group, either the Foundation or a group approved by them.
You state the bid was “shady” because of the way it was handled.
You read about LaMott’s statements in public, saying she was waiting for an animal job with the city. (I heard her, too, say things like this.)
You are removed from the meeting.
No one will touch your allegations that the bid was inappropriately managed and might have been illegal.
The City takes over the shelter, extends the bid for 30 days.
The Trib reports unsubstantiated allegations (I think that's the term they used in the paper) to support the reason for the City taking over the shelter.
City has money to improve the shelter, but refused to help the HSCC to improve the shelter.
The City acts as if it’s a permanent management situation of the shelter.
The Foundation AND HSCC have a meeting.
All online city records about this bid before June 19 disappear.
The Foundation now "merges" with the Spay group.
No mention of the HSCC, the bid or the fact that the original people, (the Foundation, City, and others) remain working behind the scenes in this and your initial questions about their interrelatedness and the possible impropriety of the bid is unanswered.
My conclusion:
Something is being hidden. There’s a lot of private deals being cut. (As an aside, I've personally heard individuals aligned with the Foundation make statements against you. If that isn't some kind of proof that you've made a dangerous statement of truth about what is happening and they're all trying to shut you up, I don't know what is. It shows just how far these people will go to keep safe their dirty deals.)"

"The Foundation tried to do it all without a paper trail, but too many people talked and nothing can be kept secret. It was all done with the intent to get rid of the HSCC. I think an investigation of the Foundation, the City and the Police is in order. "

"It all comes back to the bid, doesn't it? Was it legal or not? If not, then everything these groups have done should be undone. I'll bet a lot of us each have an original of something from the Foundation or city about all of this, so if paperwork has been 'cooked' they'll be in bigger trouble when it comes out."

"You never included the Tribune in all of this. Things don't get reported. You don't think someone in the Trib offices isn't in league with the Foundation and City? Think again."

"Butter wouldn't melt in the Foundation's mouth."

"The Foundation, the City and the Police all get something out of this. Money, power, control and more. What do you get? Nothing. So who should I believe? The groups that gain from all of this? Or the person who has nothing to gain, but is only revealing the truth? I've always been partial to the truth."

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Oh, Puh-leeze!

Get ready for more prevarication from the City, the mayor, the works.

It seems the current spin given to GF on the Animal Control Bid is that it wasn't illegal for the Chief of Police to see and compare the bids because of the KIND of bids they were.

Interesting. Then please explain the following which was an eyewitness account transcribed at the City Agenda Meeting on Wednesday 13, June 2007, a copy sent to a TV station and The Trib reporter, neither of which reported this discussion about the HSCC;

Mayor Stebbins: "The city may require the resignation of the whole Board."
She was told they could not do that, they were not allowed it is independent.

Mayor Stebbins: "I know a non-profit group, but they are not yet up to running the new shelter." "The Humane Society Board is 'half-ass. We have a tremendous problem."

Com. Diane Jovic-Kuntz: "But the Request for Proposals was not answered by 'Donna's people'."

Com Sandy: "I would hate to see the city get into another semi-private function."

Mayor Stebbins (with anger): "It is a city function."

Com. Jovic-Kuntz: "Why don't we appoint 5 new people?"
Told she could not, it was an independent non-profit.

The room was full of city people as well as two current candidates running for Commission seats.

There is also the following quote by the mayor, recounted by eyewitnesses during her tour of the HSCC shelter on June 18, 2007:

Mayor Stebbins: "I'll do everything in my power to make sure the shelter's not awarded the contract."

Do NOT tell me that there were no irregularities or illegalities happening here and that the bid was not co-opted or predetermined from the beginning.

Friday, October 5, 2007

44%, But It Sure Looks Good

44% of all animals that enter the Great Falls Animal Shelter are killed.

44% - that's almost HALF of all animals.

It means your dog or cat stands about a 50-50 chance of NOT making it out alive.

But the mayor and her commissioners took a tour and declared the shelter 'so much better' than when it was under the Humane Society of Cascade County.

Rwanda, Auschwitz...I'm certain there were individuals that thought THOSE places looked better too after getting rid of a goodly number of bodies.

Where IS the Animal Foundation of Great Falls in all of this? Try to remember, that they are selling the line..."Fostering a Caring Community" in their "Sheltering Skies" newsletter.

See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil

Let's cut to the chase. Let's call a spade a spade. It's whispered. It's known. Here's what's said behind closed doors by you, the people: "There are a few people in town that think they run things." "They like it their way." "If you cross them, they'll make it hard for you." "They'll try to put you out of business." "They'll do whatever they can to get you." "You won't get any help to stop them because lots of people don't want to upset the apple cart." "The politics are dirty in this little town, they have their own group and if you upset their agenda, they'll take you down."

Whoa!!! If THAT'S the belief of the people of GF, then we REALLY need to do something. And it's not even said just in reference to me, it's used when discussing many areas of the city and business in this town.

A big issue, in this case wrapped around animals many care about, is the fact that the City, (and the impression is the administration is in cahoots with others in this town,) opened a bidding procedure that seems to be highly irregular or, possibly, illegal. That the City has numerous areas in which its dealings, and the people it deals WITH, are participating in shady practices at best, down-and-dirty at worst. That the City continues to run business as usual as if the publics' outcry and concerns over perceived criminality or irregular behavior is simply background chatter to be ignored.

Do we truly need to list all the areas of citizen concern? Oh, fine. Here are a few in question being followed and publicized by various concerned people; SME, HGS, GE, services no longer available to citizens, "loans" to select non-profit organizations (some get it, some get kicked out, go figure THAT one), solicitation of donations to the City for shelter without benefit of a 501C-3 (I believe there's a law against that,) an unbroken string of unanimous votes on diverse issues by the City Commissioners, unwillingness to speak to the public and address their questions, ad naseum.

The people of Great Falls are NOT STUPID. Neither are they lacking compassion. They don't like animals killed in order that the few people who consider themselves "players" in this town achieve their personal agendas.

While many may not want to touch the irregularities or possible illegalities of the Animal Control Bid and its outcome, it doesn't mean there aren't LOTS more that are sick to death of seeing what's happening and want to stop it.

Mayor Stebbins, according to the groundswell statements, is on her way out. We'll see come November.

Here is an interesting timeline on this issue only, interpret it as you will:
  • 2001/2002 - A small portion of the mission statement of the Humane Society Foundation of Cascade County (now known as the Animal Foundation of Great Falls) "To help the Humane Society of Cascade County raise funds for its programs." " To assist the Humane Society of Cascade County realize its dream of building a state-of-the-art animal shelter"
  • 2003 HSCC awarded a 5-year Animal Control contract
  • 2007 - Animal Control bid opened
  • Police Chief Corky Grove sits on Animal Control Bid Review Committee
  • GF Police Dept. submits Animal Control Bid
  • HSCC submits $186k bid, GF Police Dept submits $500+k bid
  • City Commission meeting - interrelationship between City Officials, Animal Foundation Board & members, Police Dept publically noted
  • HSCC removed from running the shelter
  • 30-day extension of Animal Control Bid - unanimous vote June 2007
  • Private power-point meeting between the Animal Foundation of GF board and the HSCC board, plus others, in which the Animal Foundation states "if the HSCC will merge with the Foundation, we will use our influence with the City, County and media to stop the negative coverage." (paraphrase, but VERY close to actual statement made in meeting as reported by individuals in attendance)
  • All documents prior to June 19th about the Animal Control bid are pulled from the city web site, they are unavailable upon verbal request
  • City continues to run shelter without public vote or continued extension of Animal Control Bid
  • New "director" of shelter assigned (note: a person asked yesterday if Jaimie Bennett, newly appointed, was in some manner related to Bennett Motors, which is/was a big supporter of SME/HGS and the mayor and if there is a personal connection to the mayor via close friendship, political support, etc. I don't know. Can anyone answer this?)
To my knowledge no Animal Control Bid has been awarded to date and the City continues to run the shelter on an EXPIRED 30-DAY bid extension.

Tribune asks candidates in paper, '
should the shelter be run by another entity?"
Just WHO might that be? Do the Commissioners have a group waiting? It's not the Humane Society. Is it the Animal Foundation of GF? A sub-group of the AFGF? WHO ARE THEY REFERRING TO WHEN THEY ASK THIS?

Don't muddy the waters - the Animal Control Bid has been shown to have gross irregularities, if not illegalities in its process. Because it's representative of the overall questionable behavior and dealings of the current administration, et al., and it has effected both city and county residents,
citizens have begun to publically call for an investigation into this matter.