Davis hired as Chesterfield County shelter manager


By Kevin Spradlin

* Nov. 25, 2014: New animal shelter director takes over
* Oct, 30, 2014: County seeks new animal shelter director

To be sure, the Chesterfield County Animal Shelter has gone through some tumultuous times.

Through a 2011 investigation that revealed puppies shot in the head and discarded in an illegal dump, new Director of Animal Services Jim McGonigal said Thursday the shelter has evolved from a facility that was euthanizing 98 percent of accepted animals to now saving 94 percent of them.

Earlier this month, Roberdel-area resident Rebecca Biles Davis was hired as shelter manager and rescue and adoption coordinator for the shelter. Davis was fired in October 2014 as director of the Richmond County Animal Shelter. All that appears to be in the past.

McGonigal said Chesterfield County is the second largest in the state, and also the second-poorest.

Screen Shot 2015-05-26 at 9.15.23 PM“The government wheels turn slow, but they do turn,” said McGonigal, one of the leading outside voices to spearhead change in the past four years. “Since 2011, we’ve made improvements. Rebecca’s going to be a part of that long-term plan.”

Davis was hired in Richmond County at a starting salary of $31,305 in May 2013. Davis was charged with overseeing the county’s assumption of shelter operations as the county assumed ownership and control of the shelter on July 1, 2013, from the Humane Society of Richmond Society. The nonprofit organization was short on funds to keep the facility operational.

Upon inquiry of Davis’ salary in Chesterfield County, McGonigal said it’s county policy to require a Freedom of Information Act to be filed to obtain such information. The Pee Dee Post filed that request on May 28.

On June 9, County Attorney C. Heath Ruffner said South Carolina’s Freedom of Information Act requires that for unclassified positions paying less than $30,000, only a range is required. Ruffner said the salary range for Davis is between $24,000 and $28,000.

Davis faces the customary six months’ probationary period all Chesterfield County government employees face, McGonigal said. There is no contract for her services.

Rebecca Davis

Rebecca Davis

McGonigal said he, Davis and shelter staff will continue to rely heavily on “loads of volunteers,” from seniors to high school students, to help with routine tasks around the shelter. He said the shelter works with more than 200 pet rescue organizations.

Davis was not available to be interviewed for this story.

Filed in: Latest Headlines

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