Gimme shelter

As is the case with many small towns, Republic has no shortage of stray and loose animals. In fact, the city handles around 500 head of cats and dogs annually. The good news is that 96 percent are adopted out, returned to owners or transferred to rescue programs.
That kind of traffic, however, demands substantial facilities, which Republic doesn’t have. The small, current animal shelter located on N. West Avenue is often found with no vacancies for incoming animals, so they’re sent to shelters at other municipalities, at a cost to the taxpayers of $55 per animal, or around $15,000 per year.
Thanks to the voters who passed a quarter-cent capital improvement sales tax in 2017, the city has begun renovating a new shelter located at 732 W. State Highway 174.
The building, which was most recently used as a day care, is adjacent to other city property and sits nearly beneath the Republic water tower on the west side of town.
The city purchased the property for $206,000 on March 29 of this year. The purchase included dilapidated apartments which have since been torn down, and the future shelter building, which is 2,365 square feet.
Some of the exterior renovation work on the remaining building has already been done by city employees, which included tearing off wood siding, and laying rock for an addition to the back side of the building.
Bidding for the construction of the shelter will open for bid Sept. 5, with a completion date expected in the spring or summer of 2020. The final facility will be 6,550 square feet.
In a press release, the city made known their high expectations for the new shelter.
“We believe the new Republic Animal Shelter will become a regional leader in animal control and adoptions.”


Lawrence County Record

312 S. Hickory St.
Mt. Vernon, MO, 65712


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