Monday, July 17, 2017

Cumberland SPCA discloses invoices. Discounts not passed on to taxpayer in some cases.

In response to a court order, the Cumberland County Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (CCSPCA) disclosed unredacted versions of invoices that it had received from a veterinary clinic and submitted for reimbursement to the City of Millville.  In some cases, the unredacted invoices show that the clinic had given the CCSPCA a 50% discount that the CCSPCA's redacted versions, which were submitted to the City, did not reflect.  In sum, the CCSPCA in certain cases received discounts from the clinic that it did not pass along to Millville taxpayers.

As an illustration, I have posted a five-page document here.  The first page shows that CCSPCA invoiced the City of Millville for, among other items, $48 and $101 for exam and euthanasia cases SC34786 and SC34788, respectively.  Pages 2 and 4 are redacted versions of the clinic's invoices for cases SC34786 and SC34788, respectively, that Millville provided in response to an Open Public Records Act (OPRA) request.  Millville claimed that those invoices, which disclosed only the $48 and $101 figures and not any discounts, were redacted by the CCSPCA prior to having been submitted to the City for payment.  Pages 3 and 5 are unredacted versions of Pages 2 and 4 and show that the $48 and $101 charges were actually discounted by $24 and $50.50 respectively.

There is no evidence that the CCSPCA's decision to not pass the discounts along to Millville violated any law or its contract with the City.  Also, some of the invoices disclosed in response to the court order were redacted only to remove information related to other towns for which the CCSPCA performed services.  

Readers who want to compare the unredacted invoices that the CCSPCA disclosed in response to the lawsuit and the redacted versions of those same invoices may find them here and here.  For more information on the lawsuit out of which the court order arose, click here.