Protest planned for Kankakee Animal Control Vote

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A domestic shorthair kitten looks to the Kankakee County Animal Shelter for aid on a Friday in late August. [Photo: County Herald]

A revised County Board agenda surfaced Friday afternoon for the full Kankakee County Board meeting on Tuesday, September 10th, 2019.

The agenda, obtained by Country Herald, removes the item on transfer control of Animal Control and the Animal Shelter to the Kankakee County Sheriff’s Department, from public agenda to a closed Executive Session.  

County Board released the revised agenda only hours after PETA officials commented on the proposed plans and protest plans began to surface.

While removed from the public meeting of the full County Board on Tuesday, local organizers believe it will resurface at another session soon. A protest against the vote remains scheduled for Tuesday morning, September 10th at 7:45 am at the County Clerk Building at 189 E Court Street in Kankakee.

Image provided by Analisa Rose, protest organizer

In an interview with Country Herald last week, Animal Control Director Julie Boudreau said, “I think the current vote needs to be understood. If you’re voting for [Animal Control] to go under the Sheriff’s Department, the long-term effects are the Shelter will close.”

Animal Control operations are planned to be maintained by the Sheriff’s Department, the Animal Shelter is an operation housed within the current Animal Control structure. Animal Control averages an intake of 1,000 animals per year or one for every hundred citizens.

Analisa Rose, an organizer of the protest, says, “The only chance for us as a community to have a voice is to show up bright and early for this protest before [County Board] arrives to make our presence known.” Joining Rose will be representatives from several local non-profit animal rescue organizations.

Also planned for Tuesday’s public agenda, County Board plans to reappoint current Animal Welfare Advisory Committee members Tinker Parker, Carol Webber, Dawn Tutt, Christy Slaby, Dr. Diane Fedrow (VCA), and first-time committee member Jamie Jamnik. In a previous board meeting, Dr. Diane Fedrow expressed concerns over rabies control changes. It’s currently unclear where those responsibilities would fall under the pending plan.

With cages open, the Animal Shelter is quite while dogs stretch in the yard. [Photo: Country Herald]

Animal Control is self-supporting and does not draw against the general fund of the County. County Board plans to shift Animal Control unexpectedly first became public knowledge late last month.

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