Hamden Animal Shelter Update (March 2019)

Dear Hamden Animal Shelter Supporters,

There have been a few recent developments regarding a Hamden Animal Shelter. First off, former Police Chief Wydra spearheaded an effort for Hamden to be part of a new Regional Animal Shelter in Woodbridge. New regional animal shelters in neighboring towns don’t come around often and Gimme Shelter supported this plan. The land was already acquired and properly zoned, leading to the quickest time-line to fruition. Defraying the costs over several towns also made economical sense to us. Unfortunately, the current administration did not move forward with this proposal.

The town is considering a Hamden-only Shelter. This is a larger project where other town projects would likely come first. Once again, it felt like an administration was kicking the proverbial can down the road – like they have been doing since 2005. However, there has been a recent game changer. North Haven has asked Hamden Animal Control to leave the North Haven Animal Shelter by May 1st. https://www.nhregister.com/metro/article/Hamden-told-to-move-out-of-North-Haven-animal-13674512.php#photo-17043369 Even if North Haven agrees to an extension, Mayor Leng is going to have to make a decision soon. Only when a location is named and plans are drawn can Gimme Shelter start submitting grants to corporations like The Petco Foundation.

In the meantime, I would like to point out what I consider to be a misleading amount in the above article. The amount Hamden residents have donated for a new Hamden or Regional Animal Shelter is closer to $10,000, which reflects the more realistic enthusiasm that citizens have for this project. It is likely that before theAnimal Shelter Gift Fundwas established in December of 2017, donated funds earlier that year were deposited into the Animal “Control” Gift Fund. It is unfortunate that this administration could not request a vote over the last 15 months for those donated funds to be transferred into the account established for their intended purpose. It seems to me that some would rather change the narrative to what was accomplished in 2015.

Six unaffiliated Hamden restaurants will be joining forces for a unified show of support during the month of April. (flier attached) The beauty here is that all supporters have to do is come out for a drink, appetizer, dinner, and/or take-out; and the restaurant will make a donation equal to 20% of your pre-taxed bill. 100% of the restaurant’s proceeds go directly to Hamden’s Animal Shelter Gift Fund.However, the sad reality is that it’s not so much about the money we raise as to how many voters support this during an election year. So, to the elected officials who are still patting themselves on the back for actions they took on this issue four years ago, this is not resulting in a Hamden Animal Shelter during our lifetime. These politicians either need to revisit the plans in Woodbridge, name a new location, or get off the pot.  

Primary Season’s A-Comin’,

Leonard Young