LAS VEGAS, Nev. (FOX5) – Big changes will soon come to the valley’s largest animal shelter. After years of requests and pleas from animal advocates the city of Las Vegas has agreed to step in.
The Animal Foundation is home to hundreds of lost and forgotten animals in the valley. However, that home has been under fire for some time regarding operations and overflow.
Bryce Henderson is an animal advocate, who has been sounding the alarm on the shelter for a while.
“For so many years we have been fighting and screaming at the city and the county to do something for what felt like has gone on deaf ears,” Henderson said.
It is a fight that paid off on Wednesday as council members voted to buy the Animal Foundation Building.
“I was prepared to keep doing this forever if necessary, even though sometimes it did seem hopeless,” Henderson said.
The city of Las Vegas, Clark County and North Las Vegas have all been in a multi-million-dollar contract to fund the shelter until 2025.
“Those contracts are decades old, and they gave us absolutely no oversight into what was happening in our city for our animals,” Council member Victoria Seaman said.
According to Seaman before the contract expiration date, all three jurisdictions will have committees formed to monitor the shelter alongside current staff.
The biggest change to come will be allowing animals drop-offs without an appointment. Previously, wait times were up to a month.
“I saw what was happening for two years and it was unacceptable,” Seaman said.
Seaman has been pushing for change from her fellow council members.
About a year ago, the council agreed to audit the shelter.
“They were able to come to us to tell us they didn’t have money to continue operating and really that was a blessing for us because we were able to amend the contracts and provide better care for our animals,” Seaman said.
Those amended contracts will include an additional $1,417,769 from the city of Las Vegas. Bringing the total funding from the city for 2024 to $3,826,716.
The Animal Foundation says this is also good news to them.
In an email to FOX5, they say in part “The new contract amount reflects current costs and puts us in a more secure position moving forward.”
The total cost of buying the building will be about $15 million which will be divided up by each of the jurisdictions.
After contracts are up in 2025 with the shelter, there will be a bid between different organizations to see who can take over.
A new call center will also be available for pet owners and finders.
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