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City, Humane Society forge new agreement

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HJ - Southwest Iowa Human Society Agreement

A new agreement for the management of the Clarinda Animal Shelter between the city of Clarinda and the Southwest Iowa Humane Society was finalized Dec. 22 during a meeting of the Clarinda City Council. The shelter cares for animals found within the city limits. (Herald-Journal photo by Kent Dinnebier)

A new agreement has been forged between the city of Clarinda and the Southwest Iowa Humane Society regarding the care of stray animals found within the city limits.

Clarinda City Manager Gary McClarnon reviewed the new agreement with the Clarinda City Council Dec. 23 as several board members and supporters of the animal shelter were in attendance.

Under the terms of the new agreement, McClarnon said the city would pay for the utilities and general maintenance of the facility. In return, the Southwest Iowa Humane Society agreed to provide food, medical care and pet supplies for the animals at the shelter. The humane society will also carry insurance on the volunteers working at the facility.

“We have done quite a bit of work on the facility already to get where it’s at. The humane society also put a lot of blood, sweat and tears in it as well. So, we really appreciate that,” McClarnon said.

An important aspect of the agreement McClarnon noted is that no animals from outside the city limits of Clarinda would be allowed to be housed as the shelter. McClarnon said this may have happened in the past, but since the facility is a city animal shelter, this is a rule both sides agreed needs to be followed.

“The Clarinda Police Department and the Public Works Department are the only ones that are authorized to actually pick up animals. We’re not going to go on any wild goose chases. If the people have the animal caught, we’ll come and pick it up. If it’s just running at large we’re not going to dispatch anybody to go and try to chase them down,” McClarnon said.

Once the animals are turned over to the humane society, McClarnon said they would make all decisions relating to their future placement.

McClarnon said the agreement could be terminated by either party with 60-days written notice.

Also during the meeting, the council approved a request from Carol Putnam to apply for a $100,000 grant through the Community Catalyst Building Remediation Program offered by the Iowa Economic Development Authority. The grant would assist with a renovation project Putnam has undertaken at the former Berry Seed Building, also known as the W.H. Harnagel Building, located at 722 E. Garfield St. in Clarinda.

Meeting before the council Nov. 10, Putnam said she foresees seven Zoo Businesses being located in the building. The seven businesses would be different, but interlocking entities that will interact and support one another.

“She’s doing quite a bit of work to (the building). She estimates that she still needs to spend another $270,000 on it,” McClarnon said.

McClarnon said the grant funds must flow through the city and then to Putnam. She would initially submit a pre-application for the grant by Jan. 28, 2022. Invitations for full applications will then be issued and must be submitted by April 15, 2022. Grant recipients will then be announced in June 2022.

“Really, all that you’re approving is the funds go through the city and then we have agreed to have some in-kind services by giving a property tax abatement. Then also finishing up some work she wanted done on the city right-of-way,” McClarnon said.

In other business, Clarinda Fire Chief Roger Williams recommended the appointment of two new members to the Clarinda Volunteer Fire Department. He said the new appointments would bring the size of the department to 24 members.

The council approved the appointments of Jeff Kane and Shain Nauman. Williams said Kane is an employee in the Emergency Medical Services Department at Clarinda Regional Health Center, while Nauman is an employee at Lisle Corporation.

Clarinda Police Chief Keith Brothers also reported Officer Zachary Matney had completed his training at the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy. Brothers said the department is now fully staffed.

Two pay applications from Omni Engineering were also approved during the meeting. The first request of $62,510 represented the retainage held for the completion of the 2020 street improvement project. The second request of $7,896.59 was a payment for the 2021 street improvement project.

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