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Friday, December 19, 2008

KittyKind’s 990’s on the Attorney General’s website

FabCatWoman said...
Read KittyKind’s 990’s on the Attorney General’s website. Compare the numbers. I doubt you’ll want to have anything to do with this less than transparent organization

KittyKind’s current Newsletter states that, “The TNR (trap, neuter, release) initiative has allowed feral cats to remain in a familiar environment without multiplying, but a resolution for rescued cats with behavior issues is more problematic. There are limited quality homes and sanctuaries and most are at capacity. Nevertheless, KK has responded to this dilemma by developing a permanent, long-term care program for our unadoptable cats.

Your contribution is most needed this year as the cost of maintaining this program rose dramatically due to the escalation of commodity prices such as food and fuel. We greatly appreciate contributions made specifically to this program.”

A rather long quote but here’s this woman’s take on that statement. A resolution for rescued cats with behavior issues has always been problematic for KittyKind who I took to court in 2007 when they fleeced me for $25,000 for just these same cats who along with behavior problems had medical problems that KittyKind’s then Director, Marlene Kess, kept promising would be reimbursed when their Petco grant was received at the end of 2005.

I received reassurances for 2 years while still fostering cats with no provisions for food, litter or medical care and finally approached their new director, Hilary Harris, who claimed to know nothing about the situation. Hilary Harris, who drove me home with cats in her car for purposes of fostering, claimed to know nothing of this situation?! Their next position was that KittyKind had no policy to pay for fostering, that they never paid for foster care. While I never charged for the actual care of the cats: Cleaning their ears, clipping their claws, making sure they were fed, watching their health, charging for boarding (warehousing) of the cats or giving them love and attention, it is ridiculous to think that at over 50 cats and 10 litterboxes I should not receive reimbursement for at least those expenses. The medical care was simply solved by telling me to “take him to your vet and we’ll reimburse you”. Why take him to my vet: Because their vet was in Manhattan, total travel time with sick animal 1 ½ hours each way; because their vet was sometimes closed during a time when the animal needed immediate veterinary care and because my vet was more convenient. Has anyone yet heard all this before?

When I took this group to court, no foster papers had been signed by me because of my trust in Marlene Kess and Hilary Harris. I believed I was helping an honorable organization to save these poor animals. No papers had been kept by KittyKind and the Judge had to dismiss the case. He made it clear to their attorney that he believed KittyKind had taken advantage of me.

KittyKind was given support by the Mayor’s Alliance whose President, Jane Hoffman, said at what I thought was a Mediation meeting, “We’re not paying any of the bills for 2005.” They then agreed to pay for the following 6 months of food and litter while the cats remained in what was at this point KittyKind’s hostage shelter. Basically, “going forward” meant no reimbursement, just that they’ll pay going forward as they should have in 2005 as they promised and for the four years prior (which I did not charge them for and for which I spent close to $12,000).

My home was at capacity in 2005 with over 50 cats when my Landlord threatened to evict me. KittyKind’s response: When I took them to court their lawyer demanded to see a copy of the Eviction Letter sent to me by my Landlord. At that time Cathy Cristel, who was the secretary showed up at one of the hearings and perjured herself by saying to the Judge and to the KittyKind attorney that I had signed a contract at mediation with the Mayor’s Alliance clearing KittyKind of the $25,000 obligation (first they claimed it had been a personal loan to Marlene Kess). When the Judge requested a copy of this contract, KittyKind could not produce it – because it never happened!

Maintaining this program rose dramatically when 2 ex board members apparently wanted to be given food, litter and medical care for the many cats they still had in their homes. I know for a fact, that these two ex board members had (still have?) feline leukemia cats, fiv cats and cats with other medical problems. So KittyKind must now be paying for their expenses. Do they now pay ALL foster care people or just certain Special people?

KittyKind has a way of changing the truth to suit their version of life. In a letter to the Attorney General’s office in December 31, 2006 they claimed not to have correct paperwork for their taxes because, “Difficult circumstances in 2005 led to the resignation of the former President who managed the organization’s financials affairs.” Was the President of KittyKind also the Treasurer and Secretary? All Board Members are supposed to be on the same page – was Marlene Kess running KittyKind alone? “Difficult circumstances” is KittyKind’s vague way of dancing around the truth to avoid saying that Marlene Kess was convicted of animal abuse and was forced to resign.

Today they say these cats are unadoptable and they’ve developed programs for permanent, long-term care. What program is this? This Long-term care program sounds a lot like adoption with a long trial period. You think you’re helping to domesticate the animal and when you try to return it to them are told, “he’s not adoptable and we have no place else to put him”. This is exactly what happened to me except now KittyKind admits it’s a problem.

How many “foster” homes are out there with unadoptable cats? Are you paying for all the food, litter and medical care while KittyKind posts it as a program expense? So, for program expenses on all their 990s - if KittyKind was not paying for cat food, litter and the vet care that I paid out, did they list it as donated services? This has been in the thousands of dollars for years not just for me but I’m sure for others deceived by KittyKind’s foster “program”.

Read these websites for more “Special Needs Foster Care” details using keyword: KittyKind Complaints; KittyKind; Marlene Kess.
Craigslist: Union Square

December 19, 2008 2:34 PM

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