Blount races to finish animal shelter; Loudon County agreement ends June 30By Joel Davis
of The Daily Times Staff
Blount County is racing to complete its new animal shelter by July 1. The shell of the new animal shelter has been completed, but there is still work to be done before it can open for business.
"We've put everything out for bid and we're waiting for all of it to come back in from the (subcontractors) and everything," County Mayor Jerry Cunningham said. "We're going to try to get the kennels up and running (by July 1). We're pushing for it. It's going to push us to do that quite frankly, but we're about to wear our welcome out in Loudon County."
Animal control has been a problem since the previous County Commission declined to continue funding a contract with Maryville for animal control services. The Loudon County Commission is accepting Blount's animals at the Loudon County Animal Shelter for $4,000 a month until June 30.
The county has
been involved in a public-private partnership to build the new
shelter. The Smoky Mountain Animal Care Foundation has been raising
funds for the effort. "We're trying to put together a punch list of
the work necessary to finish Phase I," said Chris Protzman, SMACF
president. "The mayor's office is assembling that along with Michael
Brady, the construction firm. Our rough estimates were that about
$200,000 still needs to be raised to finish the components that were
missing. We are really in the process of trying to analyze what work
needs to be done and hopefully have a plan together on how to get
those dollars and progress to finish Phase I."