Ad-hoc committee to shepherd animal shelter
An ad-hoc committee of the Colusa County Board of Supervisors will be appointed to review the county's animal shelter needs and coordinate that project with the plans for a new juvenile detention center.
The two projects are linked by a piece of land.
The animal shelter sits on property that will be the likely location of the new juvenile hall behind the county jail and Sheriff's Office.
Lt. Shane Maxey came before the board Tuesday to present the needs assessment for the animal shelter and was looking for direction on what to do next.
As it turns out, that will be to meet with the committee when it is appointed in two weeks.
Maxey said he was not looking for a definitive decision, only direction on the size of facility the board thinks will be needed.
Once that decision is made, then the county can start looking for property on which to build a new facility.
"I think the smallest (recommended) piece is just under an acre, and the largest piece is just over an acre," Maxey told the supervisors. Maxey said he was not in agreement with the report's recommendation to have an indoor-outdoor kennel building.
"That would not be my preference because of security," Maxey said. "My preference would be for all indoor kennels with an outside exercise area."
The county has set aside $6.1 million for its new detention center, but is relying on grants and other funding sources for the bulk of the project.
It also will be looking to outside sources to build the animal shelter.
According to the report, the cost of just constructing the shelter — not counting land or furnishings — is between $3.17 million and $4.28 million, Maxey said.
The Sheriff's Department had hoped that someone in the county would be willing to donate some property, but there has been no offer yet.
The next obvious course is to look at land the county already owns.
Maxey said no specific site has been selected. The county is hoping to place it in Williams because it is in the center of the county and out of the flood plain.
Having a new animal shelter serves a purpose other than clearing room for the juvenile center.
The county needs a new one, which will eventually be too small for future needs.
Additionally, the current facility is more than 50 years old, has had a litany of maintenance issues, not the least of which is a leaky roof from time to time.
The county handles more than 100 dogs each month, and the need is expected to grow in the coming years. At times, there have been discussions about developing a facility that could handle large animals such as horses.
Those are decisions yet to be made, and would likely need a larger food print.
Right now, horses and the like are houses at the fairgrounds, or on private ranches.
Maxey said there is no timetable for when a new shelter will be constructed, but if the county's plans to locate the juvenile facility at that location moves ahead, the animal shelter project must stay ahead of that construction curve.