Volunteers Come To Rescue Of Alameda Animal Shelter

ALAMEDA (KCBS) – The city of Alameda is handing over the reins of its animal shelter to a group of volunteers rather than closing its doors.

Alameda officials announced in May that they planned to close the shelter because of budget issues. The facility has been operating for over 120 years.

But Friends of Alameda Animal Shelter has stepped in to run the shelter, a move that Alameda City Manager John Russo said will save the city money, more than $600,000 a year, while allowing a dedicated group of volunteers to run the facility.

KCBS’ Anna Duckworth Reports:

“We believe that this partnership will be a model in this century for how these services are to be provided in a humane way,” he said.

FAAS will pay a dollar a year in rent and receive $300,000 a year from the city in exchange for providing services like licensing, holding strays and handling after hours drop off boxes. Volunteers will also feed animals and clean their cages.

Friends of Alameda Animal Shelter President Nancy Bianchi said they are still looking for funding to help with the takeover.

“Now that we’ve come to this agreement, we really need money,” as Bianchi said they will need to raise approximately $300,000 a year. “We’ll have a full-time staff person specifically for business development.”

The new arrangement, which is a 15-year contract, goes into effect in January.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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