24 September 2014
New animal control officer joins Council staff
It was a case of back to the future at the Gore District Council this week with animal control services returning in-house after 16 years of being contracted out.
Animal control officer David McKewen does not officially start on the job until 1 October but was learning the intricacies of dog control legislation this week in Gore and with the Invercargill City Council’s dog control team.
Chief Executive Stephen Parry said it was good to welcome Mr McKewen to the team and have animal control once again delivered by someone on staff. The Council reviewed the service delivery earlier this year when the animal control contract expired.
“Given the repeated concerns about the number of wandering dogs and dog attacks happening in our urban areas, it was timely to look at the activity.”
There were a number of advantages to having the animal control officer on staff such as being able to deploy someone “at the drop of a hat”, Mr Parry said.
“One of the reasons the Council’s services invariably receive a high satisfaction rating in our annual residents’ survey is, I believe, the fact most are delivered by Council staff who genuinely care about quality of service and delivering value to the community,” he said.
Mr McKewen, who worked in the shearing industry in Central Otago before moving to Gore, said he was looking forward to the educational aspect of the role as much as the regulatory side.
He certainly won’t be missed as he drives around the District. The Council’s new animal control vehicle livery was a combined effort between graphic designers at DryCrust Communications and local sign writers at Jim Marshall’s Sign Advertising.
The Council was also lucky to have the team at Regional Ford source the van at fairly short notice.
Mr Parry said the high profile signage was part of the values that underpin the Council’s new brand. “It’s about being visible in the community and providing excellent service with a can-do attitude.”
To contact Mr McKewen or report an animal control issue please phone (03) 209 0330.