Lakeland, Fla. – A new economic impact study conducted under the direction of the Barney Barnett School of Business and Free Enterprise at Florida Southern College has determined that services provided by SPCA Florida have had an impressive positive effect on the economy of Polk County and the surrounding region. The study found that between 2010 and 2015, SPCA Florida has had a regional economic impact of $71,435,170, or approximately $5.7 million annually. Thanks to pets adopted into homes through the SPCA Florida Adoption Center, the county’s veterinary clinics have hired approximately one additional employee in each practice over the past six years. As a result, for every dollar of revenue generated by SPCA Florida, $1.67 is created in the regional economy. The study concluded that SPCA Florida serves a critical role in Polk County and the surrounding region not only by creating economic value but also by keeping animal populations down through spay/neuter programs, helping to feed pets through nutritional assistance programs, and rescuing needy animals. Without the SPCA Adoption Center, the Polk County Animal Control Service would have to deal with more than 19,000 additional animals per year, nearly doubling current capacity.
The study was commissioned by SPCA Florida and spearheaded by Dr. Chuck DuVal, Director of MBA studies at Florida Southern College’s Barney Barnett School of Business and Free Enterprise. Under Dr. DuVal’s direction, four MBA students conducted the study using sophisticated impact analysis software and tracking all of the animals that passed through the SPCA Florida Adoption Center into the county. The analysis took into account employees added as a result of SPCA Florida services as well as “induced effects” on the economy, such as sales and property taxes.
“The results were much more powerful than we anticipated,” said Dr. DuVal. “Not only are people employed who wouldn’t be without SPCA Florida, the animals taken in by its Adoption Center reduce the problems of unwanted animals and save the county money.”
“The study demonstrates that SPCA Florida is an economic engine that perpetuates the growth and development of our business community by being a lifeline to the veterinary community and other welfare organizations,” said Adam Stanfield, Executive Director of SPCA Florida. “We clearly benefit lives, both human and animal alike. We enhance the quality of life for the underserved, those without a voice, and those who cannot help themselves,” he said. “Our efforts also support our animal welfare brethren at Polk County Animal Services who contend with more than 23,000 surrendered animals a year.”
About Florida Southern College Barney Barnett School of Business & Free Enterprise The mission of the Barney Barnett School of Business & Free Enterprise is to provide a high quality, student-oriented business educational experience to baccalaureate and master’s level students, with a focus on teaching excellence, supported by scholarship and service.
About SPCA Florida Founded in 1979, SPCA Florida is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization headquartered in Lakeland. Dedicated to improving the lives of pets and people in the community, SPCA Florida provides caring, compassion and hope to more than 6,000 homeless animals entering our doors each year. Open to the public, our Reva McClurg Animal Medical Center is a state-of-the-art veterinary facility that heals and helps 50,000 patients annually. Thousands more pets and people are served through our community outreach and education programs.