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'We want to be a no-kill state.' Newsom calls for end to animal euthanasia in California

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Napa County Animal Shelter cat

A cat sits in its cage at the Napa County Animal Shelter. 

Gov. Gavin Newsom wants California to stop euthanizing animals, and he’s ready to put taxpayer money toward the cause.

“We want to be a no-kill state,” Newsom said during a press conference where he presented his 2020-21 budget.

Specifically, Newsom’s budget calls for a $50 million one-time general fund allocation to the UC Davis Koret Shelter Medicine Program to develop a grant program for animal shelters, with a goal of helping local communities “achieve the state’s policy goal that no adoptable or treatable dog or cat should be euthanized,” according to the budget summary.

Judie Mancuso, president of Social Compassion in Legislation, an animal activist group that has lobbied the California Legislature on several laws, offered her conditional support for the move.

“I’m thrilled that Gov. Newsom wants to put funding toward stopping the euthanasia of dogs and cats in California shelters,” Mancuso said. “That has been going on way too long without any attention being paid.”

She had some ideas for how the state can bring down euthanasia numbers.

“If the money goes to spay and neuter, microchipping, then yes we’re on the right track. And then promoting adoptions,” she said. “This is not rocket science. There’s only a few things that will alleviate this pet overpopulation. And that is controlling how many animals are born.”

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