Valley Breeze

The North Providence Breeze 07-29-2020

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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2 NORTH PROVIDENCE JULY 29-AUGUST 4, 2020 | VALLEY BREEZE | NORTH PROVIDENCE EDITION NORTH PROVIDENCE – Advocates for the construction of a new town animal shelter say the town has dragged its feet for far too long on this initiative. The group, led by North Providence Animal Shelter Committee member Cathy Lanni, is planning to be on the call at the next virtual meeting of the Town Council on Aug. 4. Lanni this week pointed to a July 2014 North Providence Breeze article headlined "Animal shelter over- crowded, falling apart," noting that the article was published two years after the town won a $60 million set- tlement with Google that was expect- ed to be spent in part on building a new shelter. That 2014 story detailed an appli- cation for a $150,000 grant to over- haul the shelter, but officials today believe a new shelter will cost several times that amount. North Providence also has a longstanding agreement with Johnston to have that town put money into a new shelter because it shares animal control services with North Providence. Mayor Charles Lombardi said this week that he's ready to sit down with interested stakeholders, including Council President Dino Autiello and the shelter committee members, to make construction of a new shelter, near the existing one on Smithfield Road, a reality. "We committed that we're going to do it, and it's going to happen," he said. Autiello said this week that he's planning to make a brief statement at the Aug. 4 council meeting. He said he remains disappointed with the way the conversation went the last time this issue was discussed publicly, as residents almost implied that the council has been stifling the project. Autiello noted that he was part of the old animal shelter committee and the new one, participating in meet- ings, studies, and proposals from eight architectural firms. "There is nothing more I can do in my position as council president to get this thing built," he said. The Town Council could hold 50 more meetings, collecting every idea imag- inable, and it wouldn't change much of anything, he added. "Either it's going to get built or it's not going to get built," he said. "There is no reason to keep having meetings. I've done everything in my power to get it built." In an alert about the Aug. 4 meet- ing, Lanni noted that the existing animal shelter is more than 50 years old, is beyond repair, and is out of compliance with the most basic stan- dards of animal care and housing. "A new shelter has been promised for over six years, and a great deal of dialogue has occurred regarding the cost to address the situation, but no action has been taken to move the project forward," she said. Animal shelter advocates making mid-summer push By ETHAN SHOREY Valley Breeze Editor Local residents are again calling for the replacement of the NORTH PROVIDENCE ANIMAL SHELTER, shown here on Smithfield Road. See SHELTER, Page 21 Mike Lambrese 401-447-3232 Cell Town & Country • Past President of Northern Rhode Island Board of Realtors • Northern Rhode Island Board of Realtors, 2020 Realtor of the Year • Member of the Board of Directors for Northern Rhode Island Board of Realtors & Rhode Island Association of Realtors. Thinking of SELLING Your Home? Get a Reliable, Honest and Experienced Real Estate Expert on your side. FREE HOME COMPARATIVE MARKET ANALYSIS! FIND OUT WHAT YOUR HOME IS REALLY WORTH Call me to get started

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