General News

Feral Cat Rescue set for long-term stay in Melancthon

May 31, 2018   ·   0 Comments

Written By MARNI WALSH

Melancthon Council voted on a zoning by-law amendment earlier this month that, barring any appeals, will give Sharon Morden’s Feral Cat Rescue temporary shelter for at least the next three years.

The Cat Rescue has been operating on the property of Kimberley and Michael Goddard in Melancthon Township since last fall after Shelburne Council decided Ms. Morden could no longer run the facility on Second Avenue West in Shelburne.

Shelburne Council found the operation in violation of the municipality’s zoning and property bylaws in June of 2017 and ordered its closure by last October 10th.

The Goddard property is zoned as rural residential, however Denise Holmes, CAO for the Township of Melancthon, told the Free Press, “A Public Meeting for the Zoning By-law Amendment was held on May 3, 2018.” Ms. Holmes said, “At that meeting, Chris Jones, Township Planner provided two draft Zoning By-law Amendments to Council for consideration – one temporary use and one permanent use.  The matter was deferred until May 17th to give Council a chance to review the draft ZBAs. “

At that time, the Planner suggested a temporary use was the prudent way to proceed as the property is a rural residential property and the lot was created on that basis.

“The temporary use is for a maximum of three years,” says Ms. Holmes. “At the end of the three years, Ms. Morden will have to reapply.”

According to the CAO, “A Site Plan Agreement was also entered into between Kimberley and Michael Goddard and the Township of Melancthon.”  Council concurred with the Planner’s recommendation and the ZBA for temporary use passed.

Ms. Holmes says, “The Notice of Passing of Zoning By-law Amendment has been circulated and the last date of appeal is June 13th, 2018.  After this date, if no appeals are received, the temporary zoning will allow for the establishment of a feral cat rescue facility on Part of the East Part of Lot 5, Concession 3 OS for three years.”

Darren White Mayor of Melancthon, says he is glad the issue is resolved.

“I think Council made a good decision with great input from staff and in the absence of any comments or concerns from residents,” says the Mayor. “In this case, we will likely have to re-evaluate after the three year temporary zoning.  That will allow the review, after the three year term, to be evidence based with some historical data.”

         

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