St. Hubert’s ending animal control services in 19 NJ municipalities
St. Hubert's Animal Welfare Center will stop handing animal control services in the Garden State at the end of 2022.
St. Hubert's will continue to operate its shelters in Madison and North Branch, but financial issues are forcing the organization to end its contract for animal control and rescue services in surrounding municipalities.
Nineteen municipalities are impacted by the move, according to nj.com: Alexandria, Branchburg, Florham Park, Frenchtown, Hampton, High Bridge, Hillside, Holland, Irvington, Lambertville, Madison, Maplewood, Milford, Netcong, Somerville, South Bound Brook, South Orange Village Township, Watchung and West Amwell.
St. Hubert's is working with these municipalities as they make the transition to new animal control contractors, according to executive director Tiffany Barrow.
"We have been trying to figure out how to sustain the level of service that we know our communities deserve without the financial support that municipalities should provide for that level of services," Barrow stated in an email to New Jersey 101.5. "We’re currently paying $2 in services for every $1 we are provided through contract funds, and this model would essentially bankrupt us long term. This is a systemic problem, as animal services have been historically underfunded."
More than a dozen New Jersey municipalities have contracted St. Hubert's for animal control services for decades, the nonprofit said.
"While difficult, we know this is the best decision for long-term, sustainable impact for animal welfare within our communities," Barrow said. "We can shift some of our focus and funding toward our community programs in New Jersey to help more animals and the people who love them."
Barrow added the group is interested in transferring in more animals from shelter partners and rescues.