STATEN ISLAND — A plan to sterilize Staten Island's male deer population has been prioritized by the city.
Comptroller Scott Stringer granted an emergency procurement to the Parks Department this week to start its $2 million plan to neuter white-tailed deer, the Staten Island Advance reported.
"On Tuesday, the Comptroller’s office gave approval for the Parks Department to use an emergency procurement to initiate a three year sterilization study of deer on Staten Island," said Eric Sumberg, spokesman for Stringer said in a statement. "The Comptroller’s Office grants the use of emergency procurement methods at times when there is a threat to life, safety or property."
The city chose non-profit group White Buffalo Inc. to carry out the project. It can now begin before the comptroller's office reviews and approves the contract under the emergency procurement, the Advance reported.
Stringer's office said the procurement doesn't mean his office approves or disapproves of the plan itself.
In May, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the sterilization plan for the city which he said could potentially reduce the population by 10 to 30 percent, despite some experts warning it won't succeed and will lead instead to "sex-crazed beasts."
Aside from the sterilization, the city will also use other non-lethal methods to deal with the animals, including public education campaigns aimed at reducing car crashes and tick-borne illnesses.
The deer population in Staten Island exploded in recent years, with a 2014 aerial survey finding 763 of the animals in the borough — up from just 24 in 2008.