Board gives animal shelter final OK to move to Calverton

The Riverhead Town Animal Shelter. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)
The Riverhead Town Animal Shelter. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

Despite opposition from two board members, the Town Board voted Tuesday to begin the process of converting the town-owned Henry Pfeifer Community Center in Calverton into a new town animal shelter

Councilwoman Jodi Giglio voted against the measure. She said she doesn’t think it’s the right place for an animal shelter and that the building is worth a lot of money. Councilman George Gabrielsen raised similar objections.

“I think that building is worth a million dollars,” he said — especially if power companies relocate at Enterprise Park at Calverton to create renewable energy, as the town hopes.

Councilman John Dunleavy said the Henry Pfeifer Community Center has been vacant for almost 15 years and doubted it could be sold for $1 million.

“It will move the animal shelter from a dilapidated building [on Youngs Avenue] to a new, fixed-up building when it’s finished,” he said, adding that there are no residents around it for the dogs to bother if they bark.

Supervisor Sean Walter voted in favor of the move, but said the town still doesn’t know if the proposed animal shelter will get state approval, a hurdle the project has yet to clear.

Councilman Jim Wooten called the building the “perfect spot” for an animal shelter and voted to approve the measure.

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