Wednesday May 24, 2006
Initial Funding Proposed in 2006/07 Budget
Mayor Jerry Abramson today announced plans to build a new animal shelter in Louisville that will help increase adoptions and improve response. Abramson has included $750,000 in his proposed 2006/07 fiscal year budget that will launch the first phase of the project. The initial funding will be used to purchase land for the new shelter and to begin design work. Abramson has pledged an additional $3 million dollars to construct a new facility over the next three years. A private foundation, which will be launched later this year, will help support the work of Louisville Metro Animal Services and raise money for amenities and services at the new shelter.
City leaders are looking for a central location for the facility - near interstates or expressways, which will allow officers to respond more quickly to calls and provide customers with easy access to the facility.
Several potential locations are being reviewed and a selection will be made this year. Construction will begin in 2007, the adoption and animal-care facilities will be built in 2008 and the shelter will be complete in 2009.
“This is part of our long-range plan to increase public safety and customer service for our residents,” Abramson said. “This builds on the improvements we’ve already made since merger as part of the Louisville Metro Animal Services Advancement Plan.”
In the past three budget cycles, the mayor and city leaders have increased funding for the department by 41%.
Louisville Metro Animal Services Investments
- Full-time veterinarian
- Funding for two additional officers
- Education/Volunteer coordinator
- New radios
- Data collection software
- New phone system
- S.P.O.T. (Stop Pet Overpopulation Today) mobile clinic
- Reduced-rate spay/neuter clinic
- Central High School veterinarian program internships at shelter
- Air-conditioned cabs that increase efficiency when transporting animals
- Uniforms to professionalize the department
“We have made tremendous improvements and doubled the number of animals adopted in the past year,” Abramson said. “It’s my hope that we will continue this momentum and build a new shelter for an agency that has been neglected for decades.”
The current shelter was built in 1966, and the construction plans were never fully completed. The shelter, which houses about 300 animals, provides no area for surgery or medical treatment.
Louisville Metro Animal Services is the largest animal protection organization in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. It responded to more than 20,000 calls for services and received more than 12,000 animals in 2005.