Feral Cat Rescue Will Meet Cease And Desist Order Deadline of October 10, 2017.
This Feral Cat Rescue service provided by Sharon Morden, widely valued by cat lover’s was also greatly appreciated by those who did not want stray cats around. A situation arose once a neighbour complained of odour and brought the complaint to Council who were obligated by law to act. Upon investigation, it was discovered the business had been basically and unknowingly, operating for years illegally and a Cease & Desist Order was set in place as protocol demands. The outcome of any business operating in a non- business designated area would have been met with the same fate, in fact other businesses have been forced to relocate for that reason in the past. Originally, Morden herself has been on record explaining how her volunteering with feral cat rescuing, while owning a Cake Baking company, simply snowballed due to ever growing demand into providing a safe haven for rescues, to becoming Feral Cat Rescue. Morden is a well loved and widely respected fixture and staple in the community and is the happy recipient of much well deserved and earned community support.
As a result, tensions among Shelburnites ran high in Council Chambers in support of The Feral Cat Rescue, and an overwhelmed Morden became flooded with attempts to save cats, trying to find a new location and while all of Council did not want to see the operation close, bound by bylaws and orders they could only hope Morden would be able to find a relocation solution in time. Morden has secured a portable that has the possibility of being placed on a property in Melancthon. Although a promising solution, not a guarantee.
Recently Darren White, Mayor of Melancthon provided this comment explaining the complicated process, “The next steps are that the landowner must apply for a rezoning on her property to allow the FCR to set up. This process will involve receiving a complete application, public notice, a public meeting and then a decision by council. Following that, there is an appeal period during which anyone can appeal the decision to the OMB. Council will adjudicate the application fairly and based on its merits.”
While valiant, Morden faced an impossible time crunch when considering the proposed property must undergo the By-law amendment process of becoming rezoned for the Feral Cat Business, and although Morden had raised funds through a GOFundMe Campaign, along with completing a business plan to best of her ability, her exhausting attempts fell short. On a motion raised by Councillor Dan Sample where it was suggested the Cease and Desist Order could be extended until Morden gets word from Melancthon regarding the amended bylaw for rezoning, Councillors Randy Chambers, Deputy Mayor Geoff Dunlop, Mayor Ken Bennington, and Councillor Wade Mills voted against Councillor’s Dan Sample and Councillor Walter Benotto. The motion was denied. In actual fact, it’s unclear if Council has the legal authority to alter a Cease and Desist Order once it’s been released becoming a By-law Officer and legal situation, which was also a consideration as Shelburne Town Councillors absolutely must uphold laws and bylaws in place.
At this point Town Council will now be looking for Cat Control Services, local rescues will have no where to go in Shelburne, and a local woman, Sharon Morden, must yet again scramble to save the lives of those felines she cares for, finding homes, temporary homes, shelters. The situation is not what anyone wanted, including Councillors and an emotionally charged situation that may yet see an amicable end result in time. If you can help Feral Cat Rescue contact Sharon Morden today at 519- 278- 0707. Click image below for exclusive video interviews of Councillor Dan Sample, Councillor Wade Mills and Mayor Ken Bennington.