Monday, August 3, 2009

TNR Program Works to Reduce Feral Cat Population

OPENING: Terance White took responsibility as SGR’s Sergeant-at-Arms greeting Rotarians and other visitors to the 3752nd regular weekly meeting of St. George Rotary. Ray Robinson lead the SGR Choir in a upbeat version of "Yankee Doodle Dandy." Dean Terry invited members to follow him in the Pledge of Allegiance and Nick Lang asked for the blessings of heaven on the meeting and the meal. Ken Sizemore conducted Horseplay with fines collected by Jack Petersen.

ANNOUNCEMENTS: President Ken offered information relating to a Rotary Mastercard through Bank of America. A donation of $25 for each member who signs up will be made to the club.

Utah Rotary District Governor Gil Trujillo will pay an official visit during the regular luncheon meeting of SGR on Monday, August 10. Members of the board will meet with the RDG for approximately an hour following the luncheon.

PROPOSED NEW MEMBERS: In the second reading of their names, Gene Jones has been proposed for membership by Jeff Morby. Debbie Justice is proposed for membership by Linda Sappington. Any comments relating to this action may be referred to any member of the board. Inducting of these two members will take place on Monday, August 10.

PROGRAM: Linda Baker, Vice President and manager of the local office of Workers Compensation Fund, introduced Kris Neal, president and founder of the One More Chance Animal Rescue Program. Managing 15 large feral cat colonies in St. George, Kris’ program is a 501 ( c)(3) public non-profit organization which has trapped, neutered and released more than 1100 animals in the five years of its existence and which has been responsible for the steady decline in the number of unwanted cats in Washington County. One More Chance raises funds for local Adopt-A-Friend advertisements appearing in local shopping guides; and, operates an animal food bank which has distributed more than 15,000 pounds of food to low-income pet owners who might otherwise be forced to abandon their animals. According to Kris, there are an estimated 100 million free roaming cats in the United States. It is believed a female, producing two litters of five kittens annually will be the start of 11,801 kittens in a period of five years. With the support of organizations such as Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, a no-kill facility based in Kanab, and with funding from the City of St. George and other agencies, her organization is getting positive results in efforts to eliminate the feral cat problem in St. George, including no new litters, less roaming and night howling, a reduction in disease and savings of tax dollars.

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