An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.
SOMETIMES THE MOST seemingly uncontroversial things can become contentious.
The City of Kamloops announced this week a new online process for the purchase of dog licences. It’s quite simple: dog owners can pay by credit card through an online app. Tags are then mailed out.
Which, of course, ignited a flurry of reaction that had little or nothing at all to do with the new process. Because people will find a reason to complain about pretty much everything.
Some of it has to do with dog poo. Has there ever been an issue that has created more outrage than unretrieved dog poo?
One pretty good suggestion was that dog tags be permanent and updated every year instead of new ones being issued all the time.
Another question that’s come up is whether it’s just another tax grab.
Well, yes, dog licences are a tax on dog ownership. They’re a justified tax, because somebody has to pay for the dog catchers, and user fees make sense.
And, the licensing of cats was bound to be brought up. That one’s a question for the ages. Cats are free-spirited, their owners say, and you can’t keep collars and tags on them.
Sorry, but a growing number of cities are licencing cats with bylaws that don’t insist they have collars and tags, just that a mandatory — not voluntary as is the case in Kamloops — fee be paid for owning them.
My guess is there are thousands of feral cats in Kamloops, and a lot of domesticated cats that are unpopular with neighbours who like to garden and get a good night’s sleep.
It’s time to stop kitten around and paws-itively enforce mandatory cat licensing.
I’m Mel Rothenburger, the Armchair Mayor.
Mel Rothenburger is a former mayor of Kamloops and newspaper editor. He publishes the ArmchairMayor.ca opinion website, and is a director on the Thompson-Nicola Regional District board. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.