The vote on a Fort Worth City ordinance governing feral cat colonies has been delayed for 30 days pending further review.
Fort Worth’s City Council began drafting the ordinance about six months ago in an effort to reduce the massive number of feral cats (approximately 3000) being euthanized there annually. The ordinance calls for formal management of a Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) program to reduce feral cat population. Studies such as one performed by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) estimate feral cat population may be reduced by as much as 66% over an 11 year period by implementing a TNR program.
Although many people see TNR as a way to control feral cat population, language in the ordinance has created two opposing views. One side requests that records of feral colonies be available to the public, and that language surrounding fines and non-compliance be made clearer.
The opposing viewpoint believes making feral colony locations public could lead to feral cats being harmed. They are demanding language in the ordinance be made more specific in the event city administration changes after the ordinance is approved. As it currently stands, language exists that a fine of up to $2,000 can be invoked, but it is not clear who would be fined in the event of noncompliance. This group sees this as a possible deterrent to those already doing TNR work in the area.
Fort Worth is moving in the right direction with the TNR program and hopefully the ordinance can be modified in such a way that it benefits all concerned.
Source: PoliTex, star-telegram.com
Photo: Ymbra at animal-photos.org