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U.S. government dog photo

published on December 3, 2020 - 12:25 PM
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The Fresno City Council Thursday approved a change related to the cost of the city’s animal shelter project that bumps up the price by $2.39 million.

The change order with contractor Quiring General of Fresno brings the total cost of the no-kill shelter to $17.2 million from the original award of $14.5 million. A previous change order added $310,000 to the project. The added costs from this second change order account for equipment including communication systems, access control, cameras, cat condo kennels and equipment for a veterinary clinic.

Fresno Mayor Lee Brand said the $17.2 million cost reflects changes from the original plan drafted by the county, which originally called for a shelter to be built on land near Grantland Avenue just west of Highway 99. Derek’s Mini-Storage owner Derrel Ridenour had agreed to donate land for the shelter there but the plan was scrapped after complaints from nearby residents.

The city leapt into action to build a new shelter when it became clear it could lose animal control services all together. In January the city struck a deal with Gap Inc. to purchase nearly five acres for the project near Gap’s distribution center by the Fresno Yosemite International Airport for $1.

The city plans to sell a $22 million bond to fund the project, which Brand said could break ground in early 2021 and be complete by the end of the year.

Members of the council expressed concerns about possible additional cost overruns, but in the end agreed unanimously to the change order.

Fresno City Council President Miguel Arias said the council would serve an oversight role to ensure the project is built with responsibility to taxpayer money.

“I’m going to be reluctant to do this a third time,” Arias said before voting for the second change order.

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