A $20,000 donation could fund a room to house about three dozen more cats in the Forsyth County Animal Shelter before it opens next year.
The shelter advisory committee hopes local animal lovers will help raise the funds needed to fill a cat adoption room that would have been built only as a shell due to construction budget constraints.
If the county waits to install the cages and other equipment after completion, the cost would likely more than double, said Deputy County Manager Tim Merritt during a Wednesday committee meeting.
“What I would like to propose to the group is, if over the next few months we could find individuals that would be willing to start something like a ‘friends of the shelter’ type nonprofit, they could seek donations,” Merritt said. “If we can raise about $20,000 over the next few months, we can put those cages back in.”
Such a group could continue accepting donations for the shelter once it opens, so community gifts would not go directly to the county, he said.
“I’m laying out an opportunity if we wanted to get involved in asking the community to support the shelter,” Merritt said. “This would be a good opportunity, a good way for the community to come together and help us.”
Committee Chairman John McGruder said he has heard from someone possibly interested in starting such a group.
He added that the general contractor needs to specify a deadline for raising the money, and hopefully, the paperwork to create such a nonprofit can be completed quickly.
“I think it’s an important thing,” McGruder said. “If we can get that [room] put in now, it’d be good.”
In addition to 24 cages for about 36 cats, the room is shown in the floor plan as a place for prospective adopters to get acquainted with cats.
The 13,761-square-foot shelter is being constructed on County Way off of Ga. 400.
Several rain days have delayed the project, which is now slated for completion in late February.
The shelter construction is being funded through revenue from the special purpose local option sales tax, or SPLOST VII, approved by voters in November 2011.