To the Editor:
The city of Bayonne approved a new animal control contract with a for-profit, out-of- county company effective December 1. This new provider did not disclose where Bayonne’s stray animals and lost pets will be taken, or what will happen to them. Despite lacking crucial information, the contract was approved unanimously by the city council.
I and other concerned Bayonne residents have spent the last month trying to obtain answers to these questions. Here is what we found:
This new contractor, New Jersey Animal Control and Rescue is owned and operated by Geoff Santini out of a facility in Lodi.
Mr. Santini has said he plans to take animals to Bergen County Protection and Rescue Shelter, a facility in Cliffside Park. The director of this facility is Vincent Ascolese.
According to published reports, Mr. Ascolese was charged in October with 14 counts of animal cruelty for allegedly slicing a baby deer’s throat and “failing to provide necessary care” for animals at the North Jersey Humane Society in Bloomfield when he was the director. This investigation is ongoing. (Ascolese disputes the charges.)
Would you trust these people with your pets?
Join me and other concerned citizens at a rally for animals on December 16 at 6:30 p.m. outside Bayonne City Hall. Then attend the council meeting at 7 p.m. to hear what our elected officials have to say for themselves.
Bayonne deserves better. Join us to learn the facts and what we can do to protect our animals.