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Ridgewood animal care center to be renamed in honor of the late Council Member and animal advocate Paul Vallone

Mar. 12, 2024 By Bill Parry

The Queens Animal Care Center in Ridgewood will be renamed in honor of Paul Vallone, the former City Council Member, who suffered a fatal heart attack in late January at the age of 56.

Speaker Adrienne Adams sponsored the legislation to rename the facility at 1906 Flushing Ave. the Paul A. Vallone Queens Animal Care Center which passed during the Mar. 7 Stated Meeting.

Adams remembered Vallone as a fierce advocate of animals as well as his family’s dedication to public service. Photo courtesy of the City Council

“Former council member Vallone was a passionate advocate for animals and their care and he advanced many bills to support their well-being while he served here in the council,” Adams said. “This includes his bill establishing Local Law 123 of 208, which requires the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to ensure that full-service animal shelters are operated in all five boroughs.”

Council Speaker Adrienne Adams speaks of her longtime friend Paul Vallone during last week’s stated meeting. Photo courtesy of the City Council

The recently completed $30 million three-story facility in Ridgewood is operated by the Animal Care Center of New York providing animal adoption and surrender services, animal housing, a public animal medical clinic, animal shelter care and all support services for the facility. Katy Hansen, the director of marketing and communications at the Animal Care Centers of New York, wholeheartedly endorsed the passage of the bill.

“Everyone at ACC is so proud to support naming the newly constructed Queens Animal Care Center after the late Paul Vallone,” Hansen told QNS. “Council Member Vallone’s unwavering commitment to animal welfare and his instrumental role in advocating for improved conditions for NYC animals resonates deeply with the mission and values of everyone at ACC.”

ACC operates as the city’s only open-admission sheltering organization, never turning any animal away. ACC’s mission is to end animal homelessness in New York City and every year, ACC works with over 20,000 animals – both inside the shelter and outside in the community.

“This naming initiative not only honors his legacy but also serves as a symbol of our collective dedication to creating a compassionate and supportive environment for the animals in our care,” Hansen said. “Through our mission-driven work to end animal homelessness in NYC, every day we will be mindful that we are honoring his legacy as a champion of animal welfare, his dedication to the borough of Queens and his compassionate commitment to help ACC serve the pets and people of NYC.”

A married father of three, Vallone represented the 19th Council District in Northeast Queens for three terms following in the footsteps of Peter Vallone Sr., the City Council’s first speaker, and his brother, Peter Vallone, Jr. who succeeded his father at the City Council before joining the judiciary.

“Council Member Vallone’s legislation was the culmination of a multi-generational effort that started over two decades ago, under his father, who we call Speaker One, Speaker Peter Vallone Sr., and it continued with his brother and former Council Member Peter Vallone Jr.,” Adams said.

“We thank our beloved Vallone family for their dedicated public service to our city and New Yorkers overall, and your longstanding commitment to the welfare of precious animals. This renaming is a fitting tribute and I’m so proud we could continue to honor Council Member Vallone’s memory and legacy in his and my home borough of Queens.”

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