Animal shelter announces closure due to budget cuts

An animal shelter in California is being closed due to budget cuts. On Thursday, the Facebook page for Riverside County Animal Services issued a release about the closure of the San Jacinto Animal Shelter.

The release states:

The San Jacinto Valley Animal Campus is scheduled to close on July 13. The shelter, located at 581 S. Grand Ave., will no longer house animals after that date and is closed to the public.

According to the release, pets at the shelter will be relocated to the county’s Western Riverside County/City Animal Shelter in Jurupa Valley. The San Jacinto Valley Animal Campus shelter will still be considered for use during emergency situations, such as evacuees’ pets during wildfires.

Animal Services Director Julie Bank explained what happened to cause the shelter’s closure:

Every county department faced budget cuts and difficult decisions. We didn’t want to close the San Jacinto shelter, but the budget pinch means we will be eliminating positions. We cannot operate that shelter after staffing levels continue to be eliminated.”

Riverside County is projecting a $100 million shortfall after the coronavirus pandemic’s lockdowns forced businesses to close and large-scale events were canceled. County departments faced 10-percent cuts in funding.

Bank added:

“We need the community’s support by being extra vigilant in keeping their pets safe at home.”

The release states:

Animal control officers will continue to respond to unincorporated areas near San Jacinto. Animals found in unincorporated Riverside County areas near the San Jacinto shelter (such as Lakeview, Nuevo and Sage) will be transported to the Western Riverside County/City Animal Shelter in Jurupa Valley.

Animals picked up in such areas as Aguanga, Anza, Mountain Center and Pinyon Pines will be transported to the county’s Coachella Valley Animal Campus in Thousand Palms. Animals found in the city of Banning – one of the county’s contract cities for animal control and sheltering services – will also head to the Thousand Palms shelter.

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