Noble will take MJHS extension offer to council
© Justin Crann
John LaBuick, president of the MJHS board, announces to the media the board will extend its contract for 90 days for "serious negotiations" during a rally in support of the organization in front of Moose Jaw City Hall.
The City of Moose Jaw and the Moose Jaw Humane Society could return to negotiations in the new year.
"We will extend our offer to negotiate for 90 more days in the interest of not having these animals suffer and getting this done," said John LaBuick, president of the MJHS board, during a peaceful rally for the shelter outside Moose Jaw City Hall on Friday.
"We were hoping to have this done a long time ago," he told the Times-Herald. "We want serious negotiations — not what we have had for the past two years.
"We want serious negotiations where we make meaningful progress in the hope of bringing this to a resolution both sides can live with," added LaBuick. "We're prepared to do that."
A 90-day contract extension will give the city and the MJHS an opportunity to negotiate a new contract.
During the 90-day period, the MJHS will continue to operate at the cost in its existing contract.
Matt Noble, Moose Jaw's city manager, told the Times-Herald he would take the MJHS' written notice of extension to city council for consideration when he has received it.
He said he would recommend that council accept the extension.
Noble said negotiations would not likely begin until the new year, which is when the extension takes effect.
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"At this time of year and with everything that has been said, the community needs a cooling-off period so we can get down to the facts," he said.
"This isn't only to make sure the citizens and animals are treated fairly, but to make sure organizations like this take the time to look at all factors involved, including their own internal operations, to find out why they're not financially sustainable."
The contract will not be extended until council approves the request from the MJHS.
Noble said he can't guarantee it will be approved because of some of the hostility between the public and individual council members.
"This is a council decision, from the point in time that we receive a document to present to them," he said.
"I just hope they're not too pissed off. It wasn't fair to our council members, everything that was going on here."