Northern Michigan animal control agency faces $124K budget shortfall after county misses tax renewal deadline

A service dog is pictured in an undated file image. (Shelly Yang/Kansas City Star/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)

Money is turning out to be "ruff" business at an animal control agency in northern Michigan.

Officials missed a deadline to put a property tax renewal on the fall ballot, which means the animal control department in Benzie County will have a $124,000 budget shortfall over 18 months, the Traverse City Record-Eagle reported.

The department has two full-time employees and two part-time positions. Some could be cut.

"Who will be at the desk during hours for visiting public?" Norma Eason of Frankfort asked county commissioners. "No public, no adoptions."

The tax has been in place for 20 years.

"I don’t know how this could have just slid by seven commissioners," Deb Lindgren of Benzonia said. "Somebody should be paying attention, not just the administrator. It seems to me millages are pretty important, and it is in your house."

County administrator Katie Zeits said borrowing money from another county fund is an option.