Charity Review

Issued: May 2017 Expires: May 2019

Charity Seal Holder

Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County

Meets Standards
 
(253) 383-2733 2608 Center St, Tacoma WA 98409-7602 www.thehumanesociety.org
  1. Conclusions
  2. Purpose
  3. Programs
  4. Governance & Staff
  5. Fund Raising
  6. Tax Status
  7. Financial
Conclusions

Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County meets the 20 Standards for Charity Accountability.

Purpose

The mission of the Humane Society for Tacoma and Pierce County is to advance the welfare of animals and promote positive relationships between animals and people.

Incorporated: 1888 in WA

Also Known As: The Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County

Programs

The Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County is dedicated to providing services which advance the welfare of animals and promote positive relationships between animals and people. Programs and services include:

Adoption: Each year, more than 6,000 homeless dogs, cats, rabbits, and other animals are matched with loving families through The Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County's shelter. The standard fee for adopting a cat is just $60, Kittens five months or younger are $125, and two litter-mates can be adopted for just $200. The typical adoption fee for adult dogs range from $50-$140 depending upon the dog’s size, breed, age and other factors. For puppies, the standard fee is $310. Occasionally, highly desirable pets (such as purebred or small-breeds) may be priced $280-$390. This allows them to lower the adoption fee for older or difficult-to-adopt animals.
Provided with every adopted dog or cat:
- Veterinary wellness examination
- Spay or neuter surgery
- Microchip with national registration
- Initial vaccines
- Pet care counseling
- Dogs also receive: Temporary leash
- Cats also receive: initial flea treatment and cardboard cat carrier 

Provided with every adopted rabbit:
- Veterinary wellness examination
- Spay or neuter surgery
- Pet care counseling
- Cardboard carrier

Spay & Neuter: Eliminating pet overpopulation and needless euthanasia is critical. If you need help spaying or neutering a cat, and are a low-income resident of Pierce County or the city of Federal Way, you can apply to the Humane Society’s low-cost spay/neuter fund. 

Microchip: Every year, The Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County reunites hundreds of pets with their owners thanks to microchip technology. Visible identification, like tags, are important. They should be worn by every pet. But unlike a tag, a microchip cannot be removed or lost, and is often the last link between a lost pet and its frantic owner. The Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County offers low-cost pet microchip to the public for just $25, which includes national registration. No appointment is necessary. The procedure takes only a minute and can be done anytime during business hours Monday through Friday.

Emergency Pet Food Bank: The Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County’s food bank supplies pet food to those who are in temporary need of dog or cat food. In order to receive pet food you must provide identification and proof that your pets are spayed or neutered. If your pets are not altered, you will be given food the first visit, as well as vouchers to have your pets spayed or neutered for a minimal fee. 

Pet Loss Support Group: When someone a beloved pet dies, it is natural to feel overwhelming sadness, and to go through a grieving process from despair to healing and recovery. Facilitated by trained volunteers, The Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County’s Pet Loss Support Group provides a safe, supportive environment where you can share your feelings and your memories among others who have experienced a similar loss. If you wish, you may simply listen and offer support for others who are grieving. This support group meets the second Saturday of each month at 10:00 a.m. at The Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County. There is no charge for these meetings.

End of Life Services: The hardest part of loving a pet is knowing when to let go. When your pet’s quality of life is deteriorating – when he or she is no longer interested in food, experiencing extreme pain, overly depressed, or cannot control defecation or urination - it is time to do the truly loving thing and make a decision about helping them on their way. The Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County encourages you to schedule a euthanasia appointment with your veterinarian when the time comes. Cremation is a specialized process by which intense heat is used to reduce the remains to a sandy ash. For thousands of years, in all parts of the world, cremation has been an accepted, and often preferred, alternative to burial. You can bring your deceased pet to the shelter any time during business hours, and the ashes will be ready within one week.

Surrendering Your Pet: The Humane Society accepts pets from residents of Pierce County and the City of Federal Way. We do not accept pets from areas served by other animal shelters. If you have no other choice than to bring your pet to the Humane Society, please be aware that we do everything possible to find your pet a home, but we cannot guarantee adoption for any pet. The Humane Society charges a fee for surrendering your pet to us for adoption. It's costly to care for your pet, provide medical treatment, spay or neuter and behavior therapy (if needed) before placing your pet in a loving, forever home. We ask that you help with this cost with a moderate fee.

Barn Cat/Backyard Buddy Program: "Barn Cats" and "Back Yard Buddies" are feral, un-socialized, or free-roaming cats (also called "Community Cats") who cannot be placed in a home environment. Placing them as outdoor cats in barns, sheds, garages or other outdoor structures is a humane, practical alternative to euthanasia. Barn Cats and Back Yard Buddies discourage rodents, provide companionship for horses and other farm animals, and can live out their lives in relative security and comfort. If you can provide shelter, and a regular supply of food and water, a Barn Cat or Back Yard Buddy may be ideal for you. These cats are FREE of charge (a municipal pet license may be required) and are spayed or neutered, vaccinated, micro-chipped, and treated for parasites. 

For the year ended December 31, 2015, The Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County's program expenses were:

Sheltering and Adoption Services: $1,977,154
Spay/Neuter Services: $683,829
Medical Services: $1,611,036
Community Awareness: $194,486
Volunteers: $255,853
Total Programs Services: $4,722,358

Governance & Staff

Board Chair: Mrs. Amy Bettesworth, Community Fundraiser

CEO: Ms. K C Gauldine , Interim Executive Director

Board Size: 16

Staff: 34

Fund Raising
Method(s) used: Direct Mail Appeals Invitations to Fundraising Events Internet Appeals Planned Giving Arrangements Membership Appeals Appeals via Social Media (Facebook, etc.) Solicitations for Used Cars

% of Related Contributions on Fundraising: 4.16%

Tax Status

This organization is tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. It is eligible to receive contributions deductible as charitable donations for federal income tax purposes.

Financial

The following information is based on Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County Audited Financial Statements for the fiscal year ending Saturday, December 31, 2016.

Source of Funds
Contributions and other $8,684,398
Service fees $1,133,779
Adoption fees $478,935
Drop off fees $211,899
Sales of pet supplies $56,603
Investment return $344,765
Change in value of trusts $38,960
Other income $49,013
Total Income: $10,998,352
 
Fusion Chart
 
Program Expenses: $4,225,726
Fundraising Expenses: $361,095
Administrative Expenses: $503,457
Total Expenses: $5,090,278
 
Income in Excess of Expenses: $5,908,074
 
Beginning Net Assets: $11,866,847
Ending Net Assets: $17,774,921
Total Liabilities: $1,617,600
Total Assets: $19,392,521


An organization may change its practices at any time without notice. A copy of this report has been shared with the organization prior to publication. It is not intended to recommend or deprecate, and is furnished solely to assist you in exercising your own judgment. If the report is about a charity and states the charity meets or does not meet the Standards for Charity Accountability, it reflects the results of an evaluation of information and materials provided voluntarily by the charity. The name Better Business Bureau is a registered service mark of the Council of Better Business Bureaus, Inc.

This report is not to be used for fund raising or promotional purposes.

Standards Legend

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Standard 1: Board Oversight


Description:

Organizations shall have a board of directors that provides adequate oversight of the charity's operations and its staff. Indication of adequate oversight includes, but is not limited to, regularly scheduled appraisals of the CEO's performance, evidence of disbursement controls such as board approval of the budget, fund raising practices, establishment of a conflict of interest policy, and establishment of accounting procedures sufficient to safeguard charity finances.

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Standard 2: Board Size


Description:

Soliciting organizations shall have a board of directors with a minimum of five voting members.

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Standard 3: Board Meetings


Description:

An organization shall have a minimum of three evenly spaced meetings per year of the full governing body with a majority in attendance, with face-to-face participation. A conference call of the full board can substitute for one of the three meetings of the governing body. For all meetings, alternative modes of participation are acceptable for those with physical disabilities.

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Standard 4: Board Compensation


Description:

Not more than one or 10% (whichever is greater) directly or indirectly compensated person(s) serving as voting member(s) of the board. Compensated members shall not serve as the board's chair or treasurer.

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Standard 5: Conflict of Interest


Description:

No transaction(s) in which any board or staff members have material conflicting interests with the charity resulting from any relationship or business affiliation. Factors that will be considered when concluding whether or not a related party transaction constitutes a conflict of interest and if such a conflict is material, include, but are not limited to: any arm's length procedures established by the charity; the size of the transaction relative to like expenses of the charity; whether the interested party participated in the board vote on the transaction; if competitive bids were sought and whether the transaction is one-time, recurring or ongoing.

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Standard 6: Effectiveness Policy


Description:

Have a board policy of assessing, no less than every two years, the organization's performance and effectiveness and of determining future actions required to achieve its mission.

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Standard 7: Effectiveness Report


Description:

Submit to the organization's governing body, for its approval, a written report that outlines the results of the aforementioned performance and effectiveness assessment and recommendations for future actions.

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Standard 8: Program Expenses


Description:

Spend at least 65% of its total expenses on program activities.

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Standard 9: Fund Raising Expenses


Description:

Spending should be no more than 35% of related contributions on fund raising. Related contributions include donations, legacies, and other gifts received as a result of fund raising efforts.

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Standard 10: Accumulating Funds


Description:

Avoid accumulating funds that could be used for current program activities. To meet this standard, the charity's unrestricted net assets available for use should not be more than three times the size of the past year's expenses or three times the size of the current year's budget, whichever is higher.

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Standard 11: Audit Report


Description:

Make available to all, on request, complete annual financial statements prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. When total annual gross income exceeds $500,000, these statements should be audited in accordance with generally accepted auditing standards. For charities whose annual gross income is less than $500,000, a review by a certified public accountant is sufficient to meet this standard. For charities whose annual gross income is less than $250,000, an internally produced, complete financial statement is sufficient to meet this standard.

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Standard 12: Detailed Expense Breakdown


Description:

Include in the financial statements a breakdown of expenses (e.g., salaries, travel, postage, etc.) that shows what portion of these expenses was allocated to program, fund raising, and administrative activities. If the charity has more than one major program category, the schedule should provide a breakdown for each category.

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Standard 13: Accurate Expense Reporting


Description:

Accurately report the charity's expenses, including any joint cost allocations, in its financial statements. For example, audited or unaudited statements which inaccurately claim zero fund raising expenses or otherwise understate the amount a charity spends on fund raising, and/or overstate the amount it spends on programs will not meet this standard.

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Standard 14: Budget Plan


Description:

Have a board-approved annual budget for its current fiscal year, outlining projected expenses for major program activities, fund raising, and administration.

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Standard 15: Truthful Materials


Description:

Have solicitations and informational materials, distributed by any means, that are accurate, truthful and not misleading, both in whole and in part. Appeals that omit a clear description of program(s) for which contributions are sought will not meet this standard. A charity should also be able to substantiate that the timing and nature of its expenditures are in accordance with what is stated, expressed, or implied in the charity's solicitations.

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Standard 16: Annual Report


Description:

Have an annual report available to all, on request, that includes: (a) the organization's mission statement, (b) a summary of the past year's program service accomplishments, (c) a roster of the officers and members of the board of directors, (d) financial information that includes (i) total income in the past fiscal year, (ii) expenses in the same program, fund raising and administrative categories as in the financial statements, and (iii) ending net assets.

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Standard 17: Website Disclosures


Description:

Include on any charity websites that solicit contributions, the same information that is recommended for annual reports, as well as the mailing address of the charity and electronic access to its most recent IRS Form 990.

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Standard 18: Donor Privacy


Description:

Address privacy concerns of donors by (a) providing in written appeals, at least annually, a means (e.g., such as a check off box) for both new and continuing donors to inform the charity if they do not want their name and address shared outside the organization, (b) providing a clear, prominent and easily accessible privacy policy on any of its websites that tells visitors (i) what information, if any, is being collected about them by the charity and how this information will be used, (ii) how to contact the charity to review personal information collected and request corrections, (iii) how to inform the charity (e.g., a check off box) that the visitor does not wish his/her personal information to be shared outside the organization, and (iv) what security measures the charity has in place to protect personal information.

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Standard 19: Cause Marketing Disclosures


Description:

Clearly disclose how the charity benefits from the sale of products or services (i.e., cause-related marketing) that state or imply that a charity will benefit from a consumer sale or transaction. Such promotions should disclose, at the point of solicitation: (a) the actual or anticipated portion of the purchase price that will benefit the charity (e.g., 5 cents will be contributed to abc charity for every xyz company product sold), (b) the duration of the campaign (e.g., the month of October), (c) any maximum or guaranteed minimum contribution amount (e.g., up to a maximum of $200,000).

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Standard 20: Complaints


Description:

Respond promptly to and act on complaints brought to its attention by the BBB Wise Giving Alliance and/or local Better Business Bureaus about fund raising practices, privacy policy violations and/or other issues.