Niagara County SPCA executive director ousted

Jan 30, 2012

Niagara County SPCA executive director John Faso was fired by the board of directors Monday afternoon. 

Faso had been embattled for the alleged neglect and euthanasia practices of animals at the facility in Niagara County.   The agency's Board of Directors voted to remove Faso from his role days after a disturbing report detailed inhumane practices at the shelter. 

Well-known criminal defense Attorney Paul Cambria, who is serving as an advisor to the Board, called the move, "quick and decisive."  Speaking to reporters Monday, Cambria also said the resignation of the Board itself, although not immediate, is inevitable.

"They can't all resign because no one would be here to do all the work.  Whether they will all resign eventually, I think there is probably a certainty," said Cambria. 

Accusations of the treatment of animals was confirmed Friday when the leader of the SPCA of Erie County released a scathing report revealing a high rate of euthanized animals. 

Faso has commented publicly, for the first time since the allegations surfaced.  He said the Board hired him in April of 2010 based on his business experience.  Faso said veterinary care is not in his background and he was never expected to serve in that capacity.

Barbara Carr's report stated that Faso "showed little interest in caring for animals" and that the board of directors are dysfunctional.   

"It was clear from the interviews that healthy animals were put to sleep because there wasn't space and they didn't really want to address the fact that there were more animals then there were homes or space for," said Barbara Carr, executive director of the SPCA of Erie County.