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Animal shelter

Guy Tannehill with the Minidoka County animal shelter removes a littler of puppies from a kennel on Thursday.

RUPERT — Three volunteers from Minidoka County are needed to serve as trustees for the new Minidoka County Animal Shelter Trust.

The trust was established to govern the more than $300,000 left to homeless Minidoka County animals by Diane Marie Gellings, 64, who died June 8. In a hand-written will, she left a house and more than 7 acres of property with outbuildings to the Minidoka County dog pound.

The only problem? There’s no entity legally called the Minidoka dog pound.

So a trust was created to ensure the money was managed according to Gelling’s wishes.

“They (the trustees) must be adult Minidoka County residents who have a legitimate concern with the humane treatment of dogs at animal control facilities,” said Don Chisholm, attorney for the Gellings estate.

Not more than one trustee can be from the same city, and they cannot be members of the Minidoka County Joint Animal Control Board.

The commissioners will appoint one trustee for a one-year term, one for a two-year term and one for a three-year term. When their terms expire, the trustees will all be appointed for three-year terms.

The county has a joint-powers animal control board that governs the shelter and animal control in the county. The cities of Rupert, Heyburn, Paul, Minidoka and Acequia, along with the county, chip in on the $90,000 yearly animal control budget.

The trust agreement states that the money is to be used to construct or improve facilities, equipment for personnel or veterinary care and to avoid euthanasia when possible.

In 2012, Rupert took over management of the animal shelter after it nearly went bankrupt. The shelter was moved from Paul to a building owned by the city of Rupert.

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