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Norman animal welfare project raising concerns

NORMAN, Okla. – Concerns are running high for board members at the Animal Welfare Oversight Committee in Norman.

Many people are worried about the final plans for a new animal shelter facility.

Ginger Noble is a board member of the Animal Welfare Oversight Committee.

“We just don’t have the room we need to house the animals that we have to take care of there,” Noble said.

The new project would make some necessary updates to the Norman Animal Welfare Center. 

The changes will help improve space and living conditions for the animals and ultimately help them find good homes.

The city is now seeking bids for its $3-million reconstruction at the Animal Welfare Center but board members have just discovered some of the items they thought necessary to the project were put on a list labeled “optional.”

This includes things like a multi-purpose room where visitors can spend time with animals, epoxy flooring to help with disease control and updated technology to help keep the animals’ cages clean.

“Some of the items that were on the list as potentials to delete to save money were some items that board members felt were high priority and we did not want to see deleted,” Noble said.

Noble works with animals on a daily basis.

She realizes adjustments have to be made on big projects but doesn’t feel like the priorities of the shelter should be sacrificed.

“It’s the health and safety of the animals that comes first,” Noble said. “We want to make our facilities some place pleasing that people want to come to and adopt animals from.”

The committee did meet with the supervisor of the project and many of their biggest fears were addressed.

New bids will be discussed at 8:30 a.m. Friday at the City of Norman Municipal Complex.

Bid recommendations are expected to be heard by the city council on May 14.