Fort Benning leaders and Cusseta-Chattahoochee County officials formally entered into a community partnership Dec. 8, which will enhance on-post stray animal control services.

During a signing ceremony at Cusseta-Chattahoochee County Health Department, Garrison Commander Col. Alexis Rivera Espada and Chattahoochee County Manager Laura Lee Bernstein signed a proclamation for the Intergovernmental Service Agreement (IGSA), which will provide stray animal care and control services on Fort Benning beginning Jan. 1, 2022.

Fort Benning forms community partnership to enhance stray animal services
Fort Benning Garrison Commander Col. Alexis Rivera Espada and Cusseta-Chattahoochee County Manager Laura Lee Bernstein pose for a photo at a signing ceremony at the Cusseta-Chattahoochee County Health Department on Dec. 8, during proclamation for the Intergovernmental Service Agreement, a community partnership which will enhance on-post stray animal control services. (Photo Credit: U.S. Army photo by Alexander L. Gago) VIEW ORIGINAL

“One of the things we are doing at Fort Benning is giving back to the community. This agreement allows us to give back to the community and provides opportunities for the community that live here,” said Espada.

Services provided by the IGSA include responding to stray animal calls, a modernized no-kill animal shelter, medical care, reuniting pets with their owners and pet adoption services. The agreement also ensures a safe, protected environment, food and care for the sheltered animals.

The IGSA partnership includes certified animal control officers and equipment from Cusseta-Chattahoochee County for the next 10 years at a significant cost savings for Fort Benning. The county will also provide computer software tracking systems to streamline the animal services administration process.

“It’s the first for us, we are all excited about taking over animal control for Fort Benning through the IGSA and that we are able to expand our services here in Chattahoochee County, but now partner with Fort Benning for a bigger and better partnership between Fort Benning and the unified government here,” said Bernstein.

The IGSA will create new jobs for the local community, said Cusseta-Chattahoochee County Commissioner Damon Hoyte.

“We finally have the opportunity to work along with Fort Benning, it being a great relationship to provide jobs for our community. And this is just the start of something that can be a lot better throughout the future,” said Hoyte.

For more information on the Animal Shelter program, call Fort Benning Department of Public Works at 706-545-2135 or Fort Benning Stray Facility at 706-326-7196.