Town Hall meeting addresses cat population
Barlow - During a recent Town Hall meeting, Barlow City commissioners listened to residents’ concerns regarding an overpopulation of cats in Barlow. At issue is the addition of cats to the animal ordinance to control the problem.
A handful of residents attended the meeting to talk about cats in the community, and the damage they have caused. From torn swimming pool covers to torn motorcycle seats, the cats that are running at large with no apparent owner, are really causing problems.
Another concern is of an individual who has 30 cats. To address this issue, Mayor John Wood proposed adding cats to the city’s dog ordinance. “There is concern that something needs to be done,” said Wood.
A new provision to be added to the city’s animal ordinance sets limitations on the number of cats a resident may keep on his/her residence. This actually works in conjunction with an ordinance passed in May of 1993 wherein the definition of a kennel included having more than three dogs or cats harbored or kept. A resident may not own over 3 cats or 3 dogs unless he/she first secures a license to operate a kennel or pet shop.
The second provision to be added to the city’s animal ordinance addressed impounding and destruction of dogs and cats. This provision extends the regulation already set in place stating that the owner of an animal who permits it to run at large is liable for all damages caused by such animal upon the premises of another.
This new provision states that every police officer, peace officer, or other authorized official shall have the authority to apprehend any dog or cat running at large, and to impound such animal in the appropriate place.
Upon complaint of any citizen of any dog or cat on the loose, the animal will be picked up and may be disposed of unless the dog or cat has a collar with its owner’s name on it or has a microchip. Any dog or cat impounded that has a collar or microchip identification not claimed after seven days with be euthanized.
Animal Control Officer James Campbell will be placing traps out to capture cats running at large. The city will notify people in the central area of where the cats are harbored that the traps will be set.
“We don’t want to put a burden on those who look out after their cat,” Mayor Wood said.
One final new provision to be added to the city’s animal ordinance pertains to animal waste. Any person in physical possession and control of any animal shall remove the animal’s waste.
Also discussed at the meeting was the appointment of Terry Johanson by the City Commission to fill the vacant Commissioner spot left by Virgil Mullins, who resigned due to health reason on January 27th.