Missoula County commissioners discussed a request for funds by the Salvation Army on Wednesday to help with their winter warming center. The commissioners ultimately decided that the Salvation Army waited too long to request the assistance, and they are hesitant to use their community assistance funds this early in the winter season.
Commissioners said Missoula County allocates over $800,000 per year for nonprofit organizations and the group should have started the application process months ago.
Commissioner Cola Rowley said, “Saying it’s an emergency is not fair, because it’s actually poor planning on whoever is responsible. So I’m not understanding why the community’s poor planning should be considered the taxpayers’ emergency.”
The Salvation Army has raised about $38,000 of their $50,000 goal since the end of October. That leaves them about $12,000 short. The warming center aims to be open until the end of March.
Commissioners agreed to discuss the issue again after Jan. 1 to see how fundraising efforts have come along.