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This came across the KC Animal Talk network this evening. Anyone can write to the PA Govenor on this matter. I find the comment about the legislation direction in PA could set precidence for bad laws in other states compelling. Please consider sending a letter - example text is included below. I will clip the e-mail as it came to me:

Dear TAT & KCAT Families -

Here is another opportunity for us to actively participate in catching the attention of authorities in Pennsylvania regarding the trapping of feral cats.

As we all know, there is a correct, humane and compassionate avenue to take in this much needed animal welfare endeavor. Perhaps hearing from folks like us will help sway the change to what is appropriate.

xxxxxxx, Moderator
Topeka Animal Talk

----- Original Message -----
From: Kinship Circle
Sent: Friday, October 03, 2003 5:58 PM
To: 3 Kinship Circle; 4 Kinship Circle
Subject: LETTER/Feral Cat Crisis In Pennsylvania

10/3/03--Feral Cat Crisis In Pennsylvania
1 letter

Sample letter based on:
Setting the Record Straight on Ferals, by Shell Sullivan
Friends of Animals

*DISCLAIMER: The information in these letters is verified with the original source. I cannot assume responsibility for the accuracy of the information or for the consequences of its use.

!! Officials in Pennsylvania will convene this week to determine the future of feral cats. Even though they are accepting comments after this meeting, please send your letter ASAP.

!! If you are a resident of Pennsylvania, please change the letter's introduction to reflect this.

=====================SAMPLE LETTER=====================

Governor Rendell
225 Main Capitol Building
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17120
ph: 717-787-2500; email:
online comments:

PA Game Commission
J. Carl Graybill, Jr., Director, Information and Education
Game Commission
2001 Elmerton Avenue
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17110-9797

Dear Governor Rendell and Mr. Graybill,

Although I am not a resident of Pennsylvania, I have taken the time to express my concern about a proposed amendment to the Pennsylvania Administrative Code that would prohibit the Trap-Neuter-Release method of managing feral cat colonies. If passed, the ordinance would not only lead to the suffering and death of more homeless cats in Pennsylvania, but also establish an inhumane model for the rest of the nation.

Please allow volunteer rescue workers to humanely trap cats for the purpose of sterilization and vaccination before returning them to familiar environs. TNR caretakers provide food, water, shelter and veterinary care for the cats--at no cost to taxpayers. I respectfully ask you to assure that these domesticated animals are exempt from the proposed amendment of Title 58, Chapter 137.2 of the Pennsylvania Administrative Code.

I understand the only rationale cited for a TNR ban is the notion that free-roaming cats spread infectious diseases. In fact, TNR constricts rabies transmission through ongoing vaccination programs and TNR does not contribute to a rise in Feline Leukemia Virus (FeLV) and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV). According to Dr. Julie Levy, who spoke on behalf of feral cats at a Florida Fish & Wildlife Commission hearing, "In 2002, cats represented less than 4% of the rabid animals identified in the state." Among 1,800 feral cats, a mere 4% had contracted FeLV or FIV, a rate "similar to that found in pet cats," Levy says. [University of Florida report]

TNR is the only enduring, cost-effective method for reducing and phasing out feral cat colonies in urban and suburban areas. Programs in Hamilton, New Jersey show that the amount of homeless cats killed last year is less than 20% of the 571 cats euthanized five years ago. Statistics also reflect a yearly drop in the number of strays brought to shelters.

Gwyn Sondike, who serves on Governor James E. McGreevey's animal welfare task force in New Jersey states: "It's actually more expensive to have animal control officers go out and find these cats and have them euthanized than it is to have members of these [cat welfare] groups trap, neuter and release them."

I urge you to support the efforts of feral cat caretakers by advocating nonlethal, trap-neuter/spay-release programs. Please do not enact the initiative to ban TNR in Pennsylvania.

Thank you,