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Council approves new planning for New Animal Shelter


DARRYL KNIGHT The Standard


UXBRIDGE: After years of anticipation and community effort, the long-awaited new animal shelter for Uxbridge and Scugog Township is finally moving into the planning phase. At a recent council meeting, Clerk Debbie Leroux delivered a report recommending the hiring of a construction project manager to spearhead the project's initial stages.

Leroux's report outlined the need for a construction project manager to facilitate the identification of processes, potential scope, costing, and approximate timelines for the shelter's construction. The estimated cost for this consultant is $40,000, to be evenly divided between Uxbridge and Scugog.

The report also revealed a promising financial foundation for the project, with $2.8 million currently allocated in the new animal shelter reserve. This sum includes $615,000 raised by the dedicated volunteers of NASUS (New Animal Shelter of Uxbridge and Scugog), as well as a substantial $1.1 million donation from the estate of the late Marlyn Ruth Rennie, a beloved resident of Port Perry.

During the council meeting, Regional Councillor Bruce Garrod sought clarification on the consultant's role. Chief Administrative Officer Kristi Honey explained that the consultant would play a crucial role in determining the project's overall cost, essential for ensuring fiscal responsibility and transparency.

Deputy Mayor Willie Popp emphasized the importance of cost-conscious planning, indicating that the new shelter would likely be scaled down from its original design, as well as from a smaller version previously proposed to the council. This cautious approach stems from past setbacks, notably the 2019 decision to halt construction when initial estimates exceeded expectations.

The chosen site for the new shelter, situated on township-owned property on Lake Ridge Road, just south of Reach Road, offers a centralized and accessible location for residents of both Uxbridge and Scugog Township.

As the project moves forward, community members eagerly anticipate the realization of this much-needed facility, which will not only provide a safe haven for animals but also serve as a testament to the spirit of collaboration and generosity within the Uxbridge and Scugog community.

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