For Immediate Release
February 24, 2016
New Mexicans can save the lives of hundreds of horses, dogs and cats -- just by taking action when filing their 2015 taxes
Albuquerque, New Mexico -- New Mexicans can put their income tax refunds to work for animals across the state by using New Mexico’s PIT D form when filing their 2015 taxes. The PIT D form allows individuals to donate all or a portion of their state income tax refund to help a number of New Mexico needy causes. This year, you can make a real, lasting difference in the lives of our state’s cats, dogs, horses, donkeys and mules by contributing to the following statewide initiatives:
- The Horse Shelter Rescue Fund (Line #13 on the PIT D form)
- Animal Care and Facility Fund for the statewide spay and neuter program (Line #14 on the PIT D form)
The form can be downloaded at www.apnm.org/images/2015pit-d.pdf or by asking for one from your tax preparer.
“Homeless dogs, cats and equines suffer needlessly without food, shelter or companionship, and can be a huge financial burden to families and communities,” said Laura Bonar, chief program and policy officer for Animal Protection of New Mexico (APNM). “Voluntary donations of tax refunds to these funds not only help save costs, but they help save lives.”
Each year, tens of thousands of lost, homeless and unwanted cats and dogs face starvation, disease, injury and death all across New Mexico. Even after reaching shelters, many cannot be saved, with nearly 70,000 euthanized each year. The irony, of course, is that this can all be prevented. According to an animal population study conducted by the Minnesota Legislature, every dollar invested in low-cost spaying and neutering results in animal control savings of at least $35 over ten years. Clearly, a contribution to the Animal Care and Facility Fund is a crucial step toward eradicating the needless suffering and death that comes with dog and cat overpopulation.
"Just driving across the state you can see the harmful impact companion animal overpopulation has on us all,” said Misha Goodman, director of the Bernalillo County Animal Services. “The sad reality of unwanted litters and animal neglect is heartbreaking. A well-funded, statewide spay-neuter program would not only save these animals' lives, but it can also save costs for families and communities by providing access to low-cost spay-neuter services. Together we can make a positive difference and change the outcome for thousands of animals."
Spay and neuter programs also reduce costs associated with property damage, especially from traffic accidents with stray animals, healthcare costs from animal bites and animal cruelty investigations by authorities. For the first time ever, on line 14 of the PIT D form, New Mexicans can write in the exact amount they wish to contribute to the Animal Care and Facility Fund, which will be distributed across the state for affordable and accessible spay and neuter services.
While New Mexicans often experience or hear of overpopulation issues with dogs and cats, some don’t realize that our state’s equines are in great need, as well. Tax refund contributions to the Horse Shelter Rescue Fund will help support horse shelters across the state. These organizations provide rescue, rehabilitation and adoption of homeless horses, donkeys and mules, without any government funding. That means donations to this fund are crucial to the well-being of the majestic equines that help give our state the moniker, “The Land of Enchantment.”
“The unique chance to strengthen the community that is protecting New Mexico’s domestic and wild horses using tax refund contributions also gives us the opportunity to teach our children about the intrinsic value of horses and all species,” said Karen Herman, board president of Sky Mountain Wild Horse Sanctuary in Santa Fe. “Together we can work for humane treatment for horses in our state by giving to these sanctuaries and shelters.”
New Mexico’s licensed horse shelters are on the frontlines of animal welfare in our state yet, except for the Horse Shelter Rescue Fund, receive no public financial assistance. When New Mexicans use line 13 on the PIT D tax return contribution form, they help to ensure needy horses are given a second chance.
“We’ve seen some successes, but these problems still persist, and not just in rural areas. The suffering and death of these animals, and the high costs associated with them, is apparent in every community,” said Bonar, who has worked on issues like these with APNM for almost a decade. “If we invest even a little in these programs now, we will see the benefits for years to come.”
Contributions can be made at any time of year, not just during tax season. For more information on contributing to the Horse Shelter Rescue Fund, please contact Phil Carter, APNM’s equine program manager at firstname.lastname@example.org or 505-265-2322. To learn more about giving to the Animal Care and Facility Fund, please contact Leslie King, APNM’s program director, at email@example.com or 505-265-2322.
Media Contact: Sara Palmer, Communications Director, APNM Tel: 505.908.0622 Email: Sara@apnm.org
Cruelty Case Manager Contact: Alan Edmonds, Program Manager, APNM Tel: (505) 265-2322 Email: Alan@apnm.org
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