Animal Welfare Committee Demands Answers 

Last week, we told you about a horse farm in Clinton that’s being investigated by the department of agriculture. Wednesday, the animal welfare advisory committe (AWAC) held a special meeting on the case. Confidentiality issues led to the public meeting turning into a private one, which excluding some two dozen people attending. In a written state, the agriculture commissioner says, “We can not discuss the specifics of the investigation in consideration of the privacy interests of people involved and to avoid any potential for interference with law enforcement proceedings should they be instituted.”AWAC and citizens at Wednesday’s meeting agree the animal welfare program is working too slow on the Clinton case, which may point to a bigger problem – lack of resources. Currently the animal welfare program has four humane agents covering the state of Maine. An AWAC member says in 2009 the animal welfare program received 879 complaints and seized 759 animals. TV5 tried to contact the commissioner to ask about the apparent lack of resources, but has yet to receive a response. THE COMMITTEE AND CITIZENS AGREE — THE ANIMAL WELFARE PROGRAM IS WORKING TOO SLOW.