DUBOIS – A Sandy Street resident approached DuBois City Council on Monday night about a cat nuisance.
Afterwards, Zoning/Code Enforcement Officer Zac Lawhead and Police Chief Blaine Clark were directed to address the issue.
Resident Erica Rumgay requested city assistance because her neighbor has been feeding around 20 outdoor cats.
She said the cats and their defecation have made it difficult for her family, even her four-year-old child.
“We can’t get her a sandbox,” Rumgay said, “or let her outside to play.”
Councilwoman Diane Bernardo said it seems that the more cats you take out of the area, the more cats that come in.
She suggested they try something that’s worked long-term in other parts of DuBois.
Bernardo said they could trap outdoor cats, spay and neuter them, then release them again.
“It worked pretty well on the East Side,” said Mayor Ed Walsh.
Solicitor Toni Cherry suggested that the neighbor could be held liable for the cats, if they cause a nuisance.
She argued that by feeding the cats that they are essentially taking control over them and the cats’ actions.
“If you knowingly permit that animal to create a nuisance …. that’s a violation of our ordinance,” said Cherry, adding the list of nuisances included defecation in yards.
City Manager John “Herm” Suplizio didn’t believe the plan would work. “The people will just say: ‘they’re not my cats.’”