On January 21, 2013 the Estherville City Council held a public hearing regarding the rezoning of the Old 6th Street Emporium and Jane's Place (located at 201 S. 6th St.) which would allow the Emmet County Animal Shelter to have a permanent home. At this hearing two people voiced two Cons regarding this rezoning. The Cons were the Possibility of barking dogs and the Possibility of odor from feces. There are city ordinances' protecting the residents of these two issues. In addition to city ordinances' the Emmet County Animal Shelter must pass codes established by the state of Iowa and must pass surprise inspections.
Now let's take a look at all of the Pros regarding this rezoning. Allowing the Emmet County Animal Shelter to move into a complex of empty buildings will bring a couple of new businesses to the downtown area. These businesses have approached Kristy Henning inquiring about renting space from the Shelter. Having the Shelter and new businesses on the outskirts of town will increase foot traffic to the downtown area. This in turn can bring more dollars to our community. Allowing the Shelter to move into empty buildings that are in need of repair will result in old buildings being renovated which in turn results in materials being purchased from existing local businesses. Allowing the Shelter to expand to a new home will bring more visitors to our town which too results in increased revenue. It is a fact that families from Minneapolis, Michigan, and even as far away as Arkansas have come to Estherville to adopt pets from the Emmet County Animal Shelter. Visitors from this far away stay at hotels, purchase gas, and buy meals at restaurants. This too results in increased revenue to our town. Allowing the Shelter to expand to a new home will create more opportunities for members of our community to volunteer. Volunteerism is a fantastic way for children and adults to get involved in our community. It provides a sense of belonging. These are just a few of the Pros to rezoning 201 S. 6th St.
Right now all of the dogs that are up for adoption are being cared for in Foster Homes. This way of sheltering homeless dogs will continue. So there will be a very limited number of dogs actually housed at the proposed new home for the Shelter. There will be cats housed at the proposed new home for the Shelter. Cats are very clean and quiet animals.
Our City Council voted against allowing the rezoning of this complex of empty buildings. So to sum this up in a nutshell our City Council is in Favor of Rejecting an increase of dollars to our community. The Pros of this rezoning truly outweigh the Cons. Are we about revitalizing our community or shutting the door to the possibility of a Progressive community?