Richmond has extended its contract with the Henry County Humane Society for care of stray dogs and cats.

Terms of the contract approved Feb. 15 by the city’s Board of Public Works and Safety match those of 2023. The city will pay $41,200 for up to 400 animals housed at the New Castle facility. The city will pay $103 each for any additional animals housed.

The contract specifies the society will accept all dogs or cats authorized city personnel take to the shelter. Animals housed five consecutive nights become property of the society. Proven owners must pay all shelter expenses to reclaim an animal.

The city will pay expenses for animals housed 10 days or more because of ongoing board of works or criminal proceedings.

Henry County’s shelter has contracted with the city for the past two years after the volume of animals the city houses overwhelmed local shelters. It had contracted with HELP the Animals in 2020 and 2021 after leaving Animal Welfare League because of space concerns.

Wayne County recently reached agreement with HELP the Animals to house its stray animals this year. The county will pay $200 per dog HELP houses, and the price will be negotiated on a case-by-case basis for housed cats. Last year, the county housed 34 dogs with Animal Welfare League, to which it contributed $42,000, but the county rarely tries to house cats in shelters.

Board of works members also approved a contract with B&B Construction of Richmond for demolition of a structure at 358 N.W. F St., the site of an April 11 plastics fire. Cost is $15,400.

The Environmental Protection Agency is cleaning the fire site of hazardous materials, such as asbestos-containing material, lead and antimony compounds; however, it does not demolish and remove non-hazardous materials.

The fire burned across three parcels — 308, 310 and 358 N.W. F St. — where Cornerstone Trading Group stored plastics. Toxic smoke poured from the fire for more than two days, causing the evacuation of up to 2,000 residents within a half-mile of the site for five days.

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A version of this article appeared in the February 21 2024 print edition of the Western Wayne News.

Mike Emery is a reporter and layout editor for the Western Wayne News.