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Tempe Taking Steps To Solve The City's Feral Cat Problem

Feral cats
Animal Defense League of Arizona
Feral cats.

The city of Tempe has a feral cat problem. Now, the City Council is partnering with the Animal Defense League of Arizona to spay and neuter cats through its Trap, Neuter and Return program.

Anyone walking around some of the neighborhoods surrounding Arizona State University would probably see a cat — or two, or three.

Tempe Councilman Kolby Granville said people who abandon their cats when they move or go home for the summer have led to cat colonies — and then there are the people who feed them.

Granville said the program will cost around $25 per cat, with the ADLA footing the bill using donations and grant money.

"They will then set up a line item in the budget so that if someone gives money to them and says, 'I want this money going to Tempe spaying and neutering,'" Granville said. "They’ll take that money it’ll become a lock-box item and that way the money can only be used to spay and neuter cats in Tempe."

There’s no money in the kitty, yet, but Granville and Tempe Councilman Corey Woods have agreed to provide the initial seed money out of their own pockets. 

Senior field correspondent Kathy Ritchie has 20 years of experience reporting and writing stories for national and local media outlets — nearly a decade of it has been spent in public media.