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New Larimer County Animal Shelter Passes

Jackie Fortier

Fort Collins voters passed a measure to build a new Larimer Humane Society shelter.

Ballot Issue 200 asked voters to approve an increased sales tax of 0.1 percent for a maximum of six years or until the funds have been raised. Gas and grocery purchases are excluded from the tax.Construction begins soon on the new shelter, adjacent to the Fort Collins-Loveland Airport. After construction is completed, the building will be transferred to the LHS, who will sign a deed of trust requiring them to perform animal sheltering and control for 30 years.

The current LHS building was built in 1974 and has received only a handful of renovations in the 40 years since. In that time, Larimer County's population has grown by more than 330 percent.

The conversation surrounding the proposal didn't center around the need for a new shelter. Both sides seemed to agree that the current shelter's dilapidation was a major problem. Rather, it hinged on whether taxpayers should foot the bill for a nonprofit.

According to the LHS website, the new shelter will provide:

"…animals will enjoy clean, comfortable and roomier kennels.  We will have natural light throughout the building as well as plumbing and ventilation systems that will help us keep everyone healthy. We will have quiet, private space for visitors experiencing the trauma of a lost or dying pet. In the event of natural disasters we will be better equipped to give displaced people and pets the solace they need while our staff in the field work to rescue animals stuck in the fray. Our new building will be efficient, cost-effective, and durable to ensure it lasts for generations to come."

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