The animals of Kerr County are under a committee of supervision — the Kerr County Animal Services Advisory Committee — and they've been busy this past week talking about city ordinances and new facilities.
The committee is tasked with giving city representatives feedback and recommendations for revising animal-related ordinances.
"It’s been a very productive and beneficial process thus far," said Kim Meismer, the City of Kerrville's executive director for general operations.
Karen Guerriero, a city liaison who serves on the committee, said they are about three quarters of the way through the first draft and that there is still a lot of work ahead of them.
So far, the committee already has proposed some changes to the city’s regulations, said Stuart Cunyus, the public information officer for the city. The city attorney is reviewing those recommendations as the animal regulations are revised.
Kerr County operates under state law, while the City of Kerrville has its own set of ordinances, Guerriero said. But the city doesn't have their own animal services; rather, they use the county's services for matters of animal pickup, rabies and impoundment.
Thus, the task for the city, with the committee’s help, is to make the ordinances as clear as possible so that they can be understood alongside the state law.
"We can streamline and eliminate a lot of overlap and discrepancies so that everything is more apples to apples," Guerriero said.
When the draft is finished, it will go to the Kerrville City Council, who will have to approve it for it to be finalized.
Another project in the works is a potential new animal facility, but Guerriero said she doesn't know a lot information about it, as no designs or locations have been discussed yet.
Before the project can move forward, it must be voted on by county voters, since tax dollars would pay for it, Guerriero said.
"County voters have to vote to pay their taxes for this new shelter, and we're not even to that point yet," she said. "We're just talking about a potential location and a design. The money's not there for it yet."
Guerriero added that further details will be presented in the near future.
The committee is meant to be a way for the community to have input on Kerr County Animal Services's operations. It's is made up of five members — a county commissioner, a veterinarian, the county shelter director, someone who works at a privately-owned shelter and a city liaison (Guerriero).