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Closer Look Given To Shared Services

POSTED January 29, 2013 10:18 p.m.

The Oakdale Animal Shelter has been contracted with the City of Riverbank for animal control services since 2008. The animal shelter is at 9800 Liberini Ave., Oakdale. The shelter is 800 square feet and was built in 1974. Sue Fitzpatrick, Director of Parks and Recreation for the City of Riverbank brought the Oakdale Animal Shelter issue up at a recent Riverbank council meeting and shared the following details. The building was designed to serve approximately 5,000 people and is now serving two cities with approximately 50,000 people.

“This has been a very productive partnership and an effective partnership to date,” said Jill Anderson, Riverbank City Manager. “There is a need to look at how we move forward in the future.”

The City of Oakdale and Riverbank with assistance from the Oakdale Shelter Pet Alliance, and private donations, have helped increase the shelter capacity and added a play yard over the past few years to help with the situation, according to Fitzpatrick. She also added that Oakdale Police Chief Lester Jenkins stated that the building is inadequate for sheltering animals with the total population in both cities. The City of Oakdale was approached by a new local foundation called Astro, which is interested in raising funds to build a new shelter.

The first thing that the Astro foundation would like to do is a Needs Assessment to determine what size of building they will need and what kind of costs would be incurred. The vendor that the City of Oakdale approved for the study is Animal Arts out of Colorado. They have researched the company and found that they have done similar work in other areas. Animal Arts has proposed a bid of $3,400 for the Needs Assessment plus travel expenses, not to exceed $1,000. The total expense for the Needs Assessment would be $4,400, which would be split between the two cities.

City of Oakdale Mayor Pat Paul attended the Riverbank council meeting earlier this month to express her thoughts on the issue.

“I just wanted to encourage you to continue this strong partnership that we do have,” said Paul. “It says a lot about a community, in the way we treat our animals.”

The city council of Riverbank will be reviewing the budget and will determine if they are able to split the costs with Oakdale. The item will be back on the council agenda for Monday, Feb. 11 at the next Riverbank city council meeting.

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