A letter to Senator Dial Regarding County Funds not Being Allocated to Shelter

Below is a letter filed by Sharon Forbus, on behalf of the Clay County Animal Shelter to Senator Gerald Dial about the $50,000 the Senate Bill 65 which would allocate funding to the Clay County Animal Shelter. In this bill, 18% of the tobacco tax collected in Clay County would go to the Shelter. However, there is a lawsuit in place at this time regarding this allocation. And because this is a pending lawsuit, it is going to be very hard to get any comments from the Commission on this subject. I am going to attempt to get a statement of some kind though from the Commissioners and from Senator Dial. 


Dear Senator Dial,

I’m certain that you have heard by now that the Clay County Commission, namely Benny Morrison, Ray Milstead and Mary Woods have filed a complaint for declaratory judgment and other declaratory relief against Clinton Carter, Dr. Kathleen Baxter and the Clay County Animal Shelter seeking the Circuit court of Clay County to declare SB65 AS unconstitutional and void, for a permanent injunction against providing that CCAS any of the tobacco receipts, plaintiff’s attorney’s fees and any other relief deemed appropriate by the court. As you know the shelter is run by volunteers and donations are used for it’s survival. In the past, we received $5,000/yr from the Commission, $500/Mon. from the City of Ashland and $150/mon. from the City of Lineville. Our treasurer, Frankie Gravette was informed by Ray Milstead that the shelter would no longer be receiving funds from the County. We are uncertain as to how to proceed. We do not have funding to hire an attorney and even though I practiced law in the Army for 16 years, I am not admitted to the Alabama bar and, therefore, cannot represent the Shelter in court. Without funding this shelter cannot stay in operation. We Don’t know what to do.

Please help our shelter.

Sharon Forbus


8 thoughts on “A letter to Senator Dial Regarding County Funds not Being Allocated to Shelter”

  1. For one,Mary Woods have been getting involved in too many county business when her backyard ain’t that clean if properly investigated. She stop Pro Wrestling at the Farmers Market that was raising money for some very good causes based on a lie. Now we need money for another good cause and there she is again. Sounds like if it don’t line her pockets, she’s against it. And come on Bennie and Ray, unless you’re going to roll up your sleeves and volunteer at the animal shelter, don’t take what little bit they have. We need them here!!

    1. I don’t know how these Commisoners sleep at night! Shame. Karma is not a good thing. They will difenitly feel it’s scorn.
      There should be an investigation for each penny that is spent pertaining to the Tabacco Tax. I am sure there will be.

      Cc. James Brown Attorney of Tax Law

    2. Mr Patterson, your comment about Ms Wood is completely out of line. They do not receive any personal gain by not funding the shelter. The wrestling at the Farmer’s Market is not the commissions fault either, people just try to get mad about anything that they don’t know anything about. And by the way, Ray has rolled up his sleeves and donated 16 months of Pest Control to the shelter. Maybe Mr. Patterson needs to pull some money out of his pocket and donate to the shelter

      1. Isn’t Ray Milstead your dad?? I don’t care how much pest control he has done for the shelter. If he gave a rats ass about the shelter staying open then why is he suing the shelter for this 18% & why did he say the shelter would no longer get any of the other money they have been getting from the county??? He don’t give a damn about the animals, the shelter or anything else related to it, he has proven his loyalty & where it don’t lie!!!!!

  2. Please call, write, fax, the county Commissioners. Tell them your opinion of this decision. REMIND THEM THAT YOU VOTE THEM IN, AND OUT, OF OFFICE.
    Clay County Commissioners
    P O Box 187, Ashland AL 36251
    Phone. 256 354 7888
    FAX. 256 354 3308

  3. Sounds like people are not reading what the bills and lawsu it’s are ACTUALLY about and what they are ACTUALLY saying. I am all for the shelter and supporting it, but until the Constitution is changed, it is unlawful and wrong to just ignore it, and do what you want to. I’ll admit, a lot of the Alabama constitution is just plain bizarre, BUT, you can’t just ignore it when you don’t like the results you get. What I am seeing is a lot of pure unchristian and unamerican name calling that has no place in debates/issues like this. I am seeing a lot of uninformed comments….no one is suing the shelter…the commission is suing the state, because it is doing something it has no right to do. The commission should stick to its guns and bring dial to heel. HE is the one behind the problems here.

    1. 1. If its ‘unconstitutional’ than why do other counties not file the same suit when the state tells them how to spend their tobacco tax money?
      2. The lawsuit names the defendants as Director of Finance of the State of Alabama, Comptroller for the State of Alabama and Clay County Animal Shelter, so technically, yes, the shelter is being sued and could be forced to pay legal fees if they lose as requested in the claim.

  4. Its shameful…trying to take funds from homeless animals that has a chance to live when there was no other way…Shameful also because there are NO paid employees at the Clay county shelter, all ran by volunteers….giving their time to help find homes for the dogs/cats and taking care of them when they are sick….I guess the greed in the $$$$ is they key to this all…So then the shelter will be shut down and again all you will see again is stray dogs running all around the county starving and getting ran over by cars….

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