Mayor Jeffery Kilpatrick confirmed the city dog pound has been officially reopened as of Wednesday night, a conclusion he announced following an executive session.
The issue has caused great debate because of Drew's high population of stray dogs.
The topic received recent attention after a charge of animal cruelty against city dogcatcher Floyd Fedrick was dropped at the Sunflower County Justice Court in December.
The charge came from Drew citizen Jim Dutton who has volunteered his efforts to care for the animals humanely.
Aldermen John Smith pleaded with Kilpatrick to make a public announcement about the status of the pound at Wednesday's meeting.
The pound was voted closed by the board more than a year ago, but multiple dogs have found their way into the locked facility.
"It's time to put an end to all of this," said Smith. "We either have a pound and dogcatcher or we don't, and until we stick with a decision, I don't want to be a part of it anymore.
"I've got pictures and all kinds of evidence of what's been going on at the pound and I don't understand why none of it was applied at court."
"I have two questions for you mayor," added Smith. "Does the dogcatcher have a boss telling him what to do and is he employed now?"
Kilpatrick said the matter was a personnel issue and couldn't be discussed in a public forum
Kilpatrick confirmed today that the pound will operate again and Fedrick will remain as the dogcatcher.
"I hope things will go a lot differently this time," said Kilpatrick. "It's a new year and I hope everybody can get on the same page and move forward."
Once dogs are captured, Kilpatrick said owners would have 3-5 to five days to claim them before they will be transferred to the Bolivar County Animal Shelter in Cleveland.
Dutton's run-ins with Fedrick are well documented in countless attempts to resolve the pound's issues.
Dutton was charged by Fedrick in July for destroying city property and trespassing when he cut locks in an effort to provide food and water to dogs that Dutton said were extremely malnourished and living in filthy conditions.
Drew Municipal Judge Boyd Atkinson ruled Fedrick had no authority to charge Dutton and he was cleared of the charges.
Now that the case against Fedrick has been dropped, Dutton said his focus "is moving forward to make sure no more harm is done to animals."
A nonprofit community group known as Second Chance Animal Rescue Shelter (SCARS) was started by Dutton in late August in effort to create a humane shelter to control overpopulation by using humane tactics instead of the "capture and kill" methods.
The group still meets only a monthly basis to develop solutions.