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The Recorder – Canine shelter eyes lot subsequent to Montague Public Security Complicated for brand spanking new facility

Revealed: 11/9/2022 12:29:11 PM

Modified: 9/11/2022 12:28:45 PM

MONTAGUE — The Franklin County Sheriff’s Workplace Regional Canine Shelter is exploring the prospect of a brand new facility, revisiting a years-old dialog throughout Monday’s Selectboard assembly.

Trish Howells, who serves on the Buddies of the Franklin County Sheriff’s Workplace Regional Canine Shelter’s board of administrators, prompted the Selectboard to think about promoting or leasing Parcel 21-0-152, a 15.6-acre plot subsequent to the Public Security Complicated alongside Turnpike Highway , for building of a brand new shelter. This new constructing would enable for elevated capability for rescues and coaching, whereas additionally growing proximity to the Public Security Complicated, Howells argued.

Howells mentioned the Sheriff’s Workplace started conversations a couple of new canine shelter round seven years in the past. Nevertheless, for causes unclear to Howells, talks stalled. Circumstances stay the identical, although, with the present shelter at 10 Sandy Lane “meant to be a brief location.”

“It is an outdated constructing,” Howells mentioned of the shelter, which was previously a Division of Public Works facility. “It has not been totally renovated and we have been coping with that, however the intention has at all times been to search out one other location.”

In keeping with Howells, pick-up of stray or deserted canines by animal management and police has elevated lately to make up 60% of complete shelter intakes. Moreover, police circumstances involving animal cruelty, canine assaults and associated incidents have elevated lately to make up 15% of complete shelter intakes. These statistics, Howells mentioned, make a brand new location nearer to the Public Security Complicated, a rational transition for the shelter.

“There are nonetheless a few potentialities on the desk, however the extra we give it some thought, the extra we understand how we expect it is a good match to have us close to the security complicated as a result of we’re not completely a non-public shelter,” Howells mentioned, noting that the shelter is “not having large luck” elsewhere.

City Administrator Steve Ellis suggested the Selectboard to consider carefully about what to do with Parcel 21-0-152. Montague has a “lack of enormous parcels which have entry to water and sewer” and this parcel “is among the only a few parcels” of its dimension adequately outfitted with utilities, he famous. For that reason, I’ve argued, the city may profit extra from saving the parcel for different makes use of.

“I actually love the truth that the canine shelter is in our group and I do not need to say that there isn’t any cheap path ahead with this … however I believe that there are some vital tradeoffs,” Ellis commented. “If a developer had been to come back to city with a want, we won’t level them to a different ready-to-develop parcel that has utilities to it, together with three-phase energy, water and sewer.”

“It’s zoned ‘neighborhood/enterprise,’ which does enable for business use,” Assistant City Administrator Walter Ramsey added. “It additionally permits for housing, so we have to no less than take into consideration what future wants may be.”

The Selectboard was receptive to each the shelter and the city’s pursuits.

“As somebody who’s been enthusiastic about empty heaps and what growth may occur in Montague … I’d be extra personally inclined to leasing the location slightly than promoting it,” Selectboard member Matt Lord mentioned.

“I believe I might be in favor of leasing the location slightly than promoting it to them,” Vice Chair Chris Boutwell agreed.

Chair Wealthy Kuklewicz expressed a want to proceed the dialog going ahead, acknowledging the shelter’s significance to the world.

“I believe it is a good service for the group,” Kuklewicz mentioned, “and I believe it is useful for our city to have the shelter on the town.”

Attain Julian Mendoza at 413-930-4231 or jmendoza@recorder.com.

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