City gets shelter update
Friends of the Jacksboro Animal Shelter asked city officials where things stood an a new facility during the July 25 meeting.
Shelter spokesperson Karen Umphress gave a brief history of the group and said the group understands how COVID and the recent tornado have hurt progress but said donations to the facility have slowed down because there has been no visible work being done.
Friends Treasurer Kristi Bailey said $157,994.74 has been raised for the shelter, $42,958.54 since the tornado. Umphress said the monies raised by the shelter could go toward internal items such as kennel doors and tables.
The Friends are also concerned with the conditions at the temporary shelter at the airport. The previous shelter was destroyed by the March tornado.
“Being in that kind of environment only adds to their anxiety of being without a home,” Umphress said. “WE’re concerned for their safety and well being.”
City Manager Mike Smith said monies for the shelter are in the upcoming budget. Unofficial bids for a new facility range from $425-500,000. The city took out some of the original requests such as a conference room and has $63,000 in reserves to put toward the shelter.
Smith said the city is looking at getting a seven-year tax note which would speed up the time construction would begin. It would cost $70,000 a year for seven years to pay off the note.
Smith also asked the county if it would consider assisting in payment. County Judge Keith Umphress said it has a reciprocating agreement with the city to provide financial support if the city agreed to pick up animals when needed around the county.
Smith said Animal Control Officer Mike Booher has done a great job in relocating housing for animals.
“Mike has been finding places for our animals to go from all over the country,” Smith explained.
Place 1 Alderman Libby Gonzales asked what would be pushed out of the budget this upcoming year Smith said the effect on the upcoming budget would be very little.
He said he would contact Government Capital, the tax note company, along with engineers and contractors to go out for bid and get a better idea on the price and have a meeting in the near future.