By: Kelly Alvarado
Approximately $5 million has been awarded to 17 not-for-profit animal shelters and humane societies through the New York State Companion Animal Capital Fund, Gov. Kathy Hochul announced on November 9. This funding will support construction, renovation and expansion projects that will provide care for animals awaiting adoption. This is the fourth time that the state has allocated money to animal shelters in need.
“New York’s Companion Animal Capital Fund makes a true difference for shelters and humane societies across the state, helping them to make critical upgrades that ultimately mean better care for our dogs and cats as they await their forever homes,” Gov. Hochul said.
The state has dedicated nearly $20 million to 57 projects since the Companion Animal Capital Fund program started in 2017. This year, Gov. Hochul included the Companion Animal Capital Fund in her proposed Executive Budget, which is a first for the program. The Fiscal Year 2023 Enacted Budget has also been increased funding for these shelters to $8 million.
The New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets selected the grant recipients based on the shelters’ needs, detailed project descriptions, and reasonableness of cost. Shelters that were previously granted this fund and have completed their projects are now eligible, as well as shelters without municipal contracts servicing underserved regions.
The following shelters on Long Island received an award in this round of the program:
- Animal Rescue Fund of the Hamptons: $200,000 for a new pressure washing system, plumbing, and HVAC system to support animal health, safety, and comfort.
- Bidawee, Inc. in Westhampton: $200,000 for a brand-new, state-of-the-art HVAC system.
- Town of Brookhaven: $146,500 for a shelter renovation to include additional kennels, a dedicated food preparation area, and a meet-and-greet area.
- Town of Hempstead: $52,000 for shelter upgrades and enhancements, including better drainage and lighting.
“The grant money will benefit the animals by having a separate area to prepare and store their food,” Linda Klampfl, Supervisor of the Town of Brookhaven Animal Shelter said. “It helps organize the shelter so we can prepare their meals in a more timely fashion, allowing us more time with the animals themselves.”
Animal Rescue Fund of the Hamptons and Bidawee, Inc., and the Town of Hemptead’s shelter have all been asked to comment but have not responded at this time.