New animal control officer in Warren — for now

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wshelter-catroom4Warren is training a new animal control officer, a month and a half after long-time ACO Heidi Garrity was injured in an accident on the job.

Like Officer Garrity, new arrival Mike Briggs is a member of the United Steelworkers Union in Warren. Up until this point he was an employee of the Public Works Department, but when a notice of vacancy for the ACO was posted, he applied for the position and was accepted. The Steelworkers’ contract with the town required the ACO position to be posted as vacant.

However, that does not mean that Ms. Garrity will not be back on the job following her on-the-job car accident — though her supervisor, Warren Police Deputy Chief Joseph Loiselle, declined to comment on her status.

However, he said, Mr. Briggs is training for the job with assistant animal control officer Kathi Krause.

As training continues, he said, Warren DPW crews, volunteers and others have spent considerable time at the Wood Street shelter, cleaning it up and making it more accommodating. The work comes after an inspection of the property several weeks ago by the state DEM and Rhode Island Society for the Prevention that uncovered some deficiencies but “was mostly positive,” the Deputy Chief said.

“We’ve had a lot of people really stepping forward,” he said. “We’re cleaning up the place; there’s a lot of wonderful volunteers and everyone’s helping out.”

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