Pets' Trust question passes in Miami-Dade County

64% of voters agree to pay slightly higher property taxes to make animal shelter no-kill, pay for spay, neuter surgeries

MIAMI – Miami-Dade voters agree to pay slightly higher property taxes which would pay to turn the animal shelter into a no-kill facility and would also pay for 100,000 spay and neuter surgeries annually.

"When we asked them, 'Do you care about our animals?' they said yes, and not only said yes, they're willing to invest in the animals," said Michael Rosenberg, the President of the Pets' Trust.

The Pets' Trust, a nonbinding straw ballot regarding funding for animal services in Miami-Dade, was supported by 64 percent of voters.

"It's definitely going to help us save a lot, a lot of animals, and really achieve those goals that we're trying to get to of no-kill," said Miami-Dade Animal Services Director of Alex Munoz.

Munoz said the biggest problem facing the shelter in Medley is overpopulation.

"Even though you have the money, you still got to find adopters for the least adoptable animals," said Munoz.

Of the 37,000 dogs and cats brought to the pound every year, more than half are euthanized. The breeding problem, especially among cats, is out of control in the county.

"We need to do 70, 80, 90, 100,000 spay and neuter surgeries a year free," said Rosenberg.

PHOTOS: Pets available for adoption

The hope is that the annual boost of $20 million from taxpayers will help save 90 percent of the animals.

"It's alright. It's just a little bit. It's not humongous. I can handle it," said Kitty Levin.

"Go $20 extra about a year is nothing to me to help those thousands of animals," said Nicole Castillo.

"We're going to have that support troop backing us up and we're going to do it right, making everybody so proud," said Rosenberg.

The Miami-Dade County Commission must still approve the Pets' Trust.