Committee halfway to goal for new animal shelter

Just a few months after first announcing plans for a fundraising campaign to build a new animal shelter, Fulton Mayor LeRoy Benton says the planning committee already is halfway toward its $250,000 goal.

“We now have approximately $132,000 either in-hand, or pledged,” Benton announced to the city council Tuesday night. “I feel really good about what we’ve done. This is going to happen.”

Les Hudson, Fulton’s planning and protective services director — a position which oversees the animal shelter — said he has been impressed at the community’s response thus far.

“I’m very happy with the people of Fulton — they have really come through,” Hudson said.

Benton first proposed the idea to launch an effort to build a new animal shelter in February, and he and a committee comprised of city employees and citizen volunteers have been busy in the time since then, developing plans and promoting the cause.

The existing Garrett Animal Shelter actually started life as the city pool bath house — it was converted into an animal shelter in the 1990s as a “temporary” location.

“Fundraising has gone so well because (a new shelter) is so desperately needed,” said Animal Shelter Committee member Edie Maxey. “Basically Fulton is a very well-run community with good facilities, but the animal shelter is so far below that standard. Conditions there are unhealthy and it’s not nearly big enough — it’s way below what a city this size should have.

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