Despite the difficulties, especially economic, Rho kennel reconstruction plan, in the province of Milan, continues. Councilor for the environment and animals, Valentina Giro, also devoted part of the council’s last commission to the topic, to confirm that the cooperation between the municipality andDimensione Animale Association Deptwhich was tendered for reconstruction in July 2020, is constant.
“The municipality – explained the councilor – received assurances in this sense: the project is moving forward and the association wants to continue its commitment. We understand the doubts of those who fear that everything is at a standstill, but in recent months we have always worked to support the Association and solve problems together.”
The whole story started in July 2020, when Animal size Ref won the tender for the reconstruction of the cat shelter: this is specifically the construction of a new building in the via Turati district along with the management of the service. The procedure stipulates that the responsibility of the association is to develop the project in all its aspects and implement it from its own resources.
However, the administrative part contains when the area is made available, in addition to an extraordinary non-refundable contribution of 150,000 euros, corresponding to recognized damage insurance for the damage suffered in the fire that destroyed the structure. For breeding cats instead, 25k per year for 30 years is expected, financed by the association based on the costs incurred for the care of the cats. The completed work remains with the city after the end of the thirty-year concession: it is therefore more precisely a public work that is built by a third sector entity that can act without following the procurement code in accordance with the requirements set out in the notice as required by law.
And so far everything is fine, except that the reconstruction, which officially began in November 2021 with the establishment of the construction site and the implementation of preparatory work for the construction of the structure, However, due to economic problems, it is progressing very slowly The association has expressed for a long time and also published on its website in the section dedicated to the topic: «The total cost of the construction of the finished work is 850 thousand plus VAT of 22%, but the amount frozen so far is intended for the reconstruction of the kennel is 391,638.48 euros “, a difference that led to a revision of the project to reduce costs while maintaining all the originally envisioned features.
“The work of the municipality – Councilor Giro emphasizes – on supporting the association and joint problem solving continues. From our side, we want to assure you once again regarding public funds: after agreement with the Association, 150,000 euros have not yet been paid at this time a substantial amount foreseen in the contract, which will be transferred when the construction site actually comes to life. In the meantime, however, we provide an annual allowance to run a temporary kennel to ensure the cats have the necessary care and food. However, the funds obtained by the citizens are kept by the association, which is making every effort to get the building up and running quickly.”
In addition to the controversy, the municipality’s commitment to the topic is written in black and white in public documents: 150 thousand euros for reconstruction, the area on which it is to be built, and a total management contribution of 750 thousand euros over thirty years. Incoming commitmentas follows from the words of the councilman, confirmed with the hope that the agreed project completion times will be met.
In the meantime, despite the difficulties, the association never stopped its activities: in 2022, the volunteers they cured and treated 21 cats, returned 36 lost families and sterilized 29 registered and unregistered colonies. A total of 119 cats were welcomed to the shelter, and all of them underwent routine health prophylaxis (chip insertion, deworming, vaccination, sterilization and other necessary care). Unfortunately, six did not make it. But 99 were accepted. The municipality is now waiting for the data for the year 2023, which has just ended.