Animal control and its shelter undergo major improvements despite rocky start

Improvements in structure and partnership


Despite a difficult start, city and county county animal control officials have put up a united front and their efforts are showing, just check out the changes at the animal shelter.
It's a makeover you can see outside and inside. 
The city has spent nearly $150,000 over the last seven months on animal shelter improvements such as remodeling office space and adding walkways to installing bird netting, rain gutters and adjustable shade canopies. 
It has also replaced the old administration trailer with a double wide trailer placed further back to make room for more parking. 
Changes shelter volunteer Penny Holland appreciates.
"I think it's really great. Because it makes the living conditions a lot better than what it was. It's not going to be as hot for the animals its going to prevent the birds from coming in," said Holland.
"It helps when the public comes in and they sees the improvements and think it's improving the care of the animals," said County Animal Control Director Jen Woodard.
City and county animal control officials say its not just the building that has improved, but also their partnership, which started out rocky.
"We're just two different agencies. We have different ways of doing things, ways of governental structure," said Bakersfield assistant city manager Steve Teglia.
Previously the city paid the county to use their shelter services, but became more hands on with the partnership.
"We want to understand better how things are operating, how money is being spent, how resources are being allocated and ultimate outcomes and services being provided," said Teglia.
All of which caused tension. 
But both sides say they've come to an understanding.
"Over the last year or so I think the city and county have worked well to accomplish a lot," said Teglia.
"It's going great," said Woodard.
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