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Commission Approves New Fee Schedules for Animal Shelter and Recreation Department

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The Josephine County Board of Commissioners approved new fee schedules for the Animal Shelter and Recreation Department during its weekly business session on Wednesday. The Board voted 2-0 to approve the fee changes following a public hearing. Commissioner Dan DeYoung was absent.

Finance Director Sandy Novak testified that the fee adjustments were made so users will pay for most services from Josephine County instead of the bills being footed by taxpayers. The Animal Shelter fee schedule will increase slightly for adoptions while the Parks Department will increase fees for some campground services, and various plot sales for Granite Hill Cemetery will start in March.

Josephine County Public Health Director Mike Weber made a presentation on the Animal Shelter by stating it is hampered by aging infrastructure, a lack of funding and inadequate staffing. In a comparison with 15 similar facilities, the local shelter had the 3rd-highest number of animal intakes and the 3rd-lowest level of funding with the lowest ratio of staff per animal.

Weber testified that the current shelter across from the Grants Pass Airport has the same number of kennels as it had in 1978 while the number of animal intakes has increased dramatically. He said the septic and drainage systems are outdated and the concrete walls are cracking and crumbling, adding that a rehabilitated facility is desperately needed.

Weber unveiled a proposed Animal Shelter Levy to upgrade the facility and services. The total cost would be 47 cents per thousand dollars of assessed value including 27.6 cents for operations and 19.4 cents for the facility. The operations portion of the levy would continue for five years while the facility portion would cease after an Oregon Business Loan is paid off.

As part of the Consent Calendar, Karl Haeckler was appointed to a three-year term on the Josephine County Fair Board and Chip Dennerlein was reappointed to a four-year term on the Bikeways & Walkways Committee.
Posted on 2/1/24 6:12AM by Sam Marsh