Category: Manor Township

Stray Cat Problem Subsiding in Manor Township

A pair of cats enjoy the warm April evening yesterday in a driveway across from the Manor Township Municipal Building.

 

by Jonathan Weaver

The number of feral or pregnant cats running through Manor Township without a home has diminished since last month, but a local resident said the problem could quickly return.

Supervisor Don Palmer said he has seen a “very small” number of cats in his neighborhood, estimating there are about four

Resident Barb Bittinger agreed that neighbor complaints are also diminishing, but warned cats may quickly become an issue again if support doesn’t continue.

“There are a lot pregnant, and I’m hoping to nip it in the bud before (the problem) gets too big,” Bittinger said. “You don’t see any (cats) now, but it’s going to be crazy. There’s going to be a problem.

“Some areas there are a lot of cats and some there isn’t.”

She said within six months, baby cats can also become pregnant.

Bittinger, who described herself as an animal lover, couldn’t identify why the number of cats has diminished but has heard rumors of residents killing them on their own.

“I was never even a cat person – I just got involved because a couple people told me a petition was taken, people were concerned about the overpopulation of cats and I didn’t want to see them destroyed,” Bittinger said. “I wanted to be a voice for the cats.”

Last month, supervisors pledged $250 toward the issue and made the township building available for a rummage sale to raise funds, but no date has been scheduled.

The same amount was pledged by a local resident.

Bittinger began attending township meetings in December discussing the “epidemic.” She said she is trying to catch all the cats near Park Avenue before some do become pregnant and chase male cats away.

Commissioners Accept LERTA Agreements

Commissioners Jason Renshaw and Pat Fabian formally adopted the LERTA ordinances in Bethel and Manor Townships last week. Commissioner George Skamai was not present for the vote.

by Jonathan Weaver

Last week, County Commissioners formally recognized and adopted tax abatements for residents in a pair of local municipalities.

Commissioner Chair Pat Fabian and Vice-Chair Jason Renshaw both agreed and adopted Local Economic Revitalization Tax Assistance (LERTA) designations in Manor Township and Bethel Township.

Earlier in the week, the tax abatements – as well as pending resolutions for North Buffalo and East Franklin Township – were also approved 7-1.

Planning and Development Executive Director Rich Palilla said County Solicitor Chase McClister prepared the ordinances and they reflect each municipality’s plan moving forward.

“It’s been the County’s practice to adopt ordinances for tax abatements upon the request from those municipalities,” Palilla said. “Both Bethel and Manor Township have declared the entire municipality as the eligible area. Both townships have adopted a 10-year tax abatement schedule – 100 percent in Year One and then declining by 10 percent in subsequent years.”

School Superintendent Chris DeVivo had recommended the resolutions be honored after meeting with commissioners earlier this month.

“As a result of that meeting, we came out and really believe that we need to honor the requests made by the municipalities moving forward,” DeVivo said earlier this month. “We don’t believe there’s any harm in offering the LERTA programs in each of those municipalities.

“We need to work hand-in-hand in an effort to try to spur some kind of development –residential, commercial, industrial, whatever it might be – in an effort to expand the tax base in this county. Any program that can give that a boost, I think we should be supportive of.”

Board Directors Stan Berdell, Paul Lobby and Rick Mulroy, along with DeVivo and Business Manager Sam Kirk, met with County Commissioners March 4 to discuss the pending agreements.

Berdell said he was “encouraged” at the meeting with the turnout from many different departments.

In addition to commissioners meeting with school officials, Commissioner Fabian said the trio of commissioners and administration directors also met with County Tax Claim Director Jeanne Englert, Planning and Development Executive Director Rich Palilla and County Assessment Board Member Dan Burk.

After Superintendent DeVivo’s recommendation, Commissioner Fabian said the trio of commissioners will consider each tax abatement ordinance as they are presented.

“We agreed that as individual municipalities (pass resolutions), whether they be industrial, commercial or residential, the school district and the County would follow suit,” Fabian said. “As (individual municipality agreements) come through, we will adopt those as well.”

Last week, Fabian added that the discussion included “healthy dialogue” and that all officials were “on the same page.”