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Woman pushes for animal rescue in city


Dorothy Harris is the type of person who doesn’t give up easily.

She has been trying to convince the city of Grand Coulee that a dog rescue shelter would benefit the city and provide a service that the city desperately needs.

She has appeared twice at the city council, only to be turned aside.

Now she plans a run at the city’s planning commission on Aug. 9.

Harris was told by a neighbor that “you can’t fight city hall.”

She doesn’t see it that way, but more as providing a service that the city sorely needs.

She and her sister-in-law, Dee Harris, have “rescued” some 400 dogs and 600 cats, gotten them fit and found homes for them, Harris says.

At the last council meeting, Harris was told that there was no way that a “rescue” operation would be allowed in an R-1 (residential) zone. Harris lives on Young Street.

“I can look out and see the mayor’s own commercial operation, hardly a block away,” Harris stated. She was referring to Mayor Paul Townsend’s TNT Welding business.

At the end of the last council meeting, the two rescue proponents were asked to meet with council members Tammara Byers and David Tylor, who are both on the planning commission.

“When we looked at the map, it appears we are actually in an R-3 zone, which would allow a rescue,” Harris said.

The rescue operation might go like this: Someone drops off an animal they can’t take care of at Harris’ place. She would then see that the animal’s health was checked, and then find a home for the animal, all at her own expense.

“We try to save animals so that they are not killed,” Harris said.

The alternative to a “rescue” operation often is that cities end up having animals put down, Harris explained.

Harris explains her position and the need for a rescue operation in a letter to the editor in this week’s Star, on page 3.

Harris has volunteered to work with the city in writing an ordinance that would cover a rescue operation.

She may get her chance to do so when she appears before the city’s planning commission in August.

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