A Texas city council has voted to evict a library cat.
The library has been home to a light-grey tabby kitty named Browser for five years. The council ordered his eviction in a 2-to-1 vote, according to Fox News. The mayor of White Settlement says the council cites “pettiness” as the reason for Browser’s sudden eviction.
According to Mayor Ron White, the cat’s eviction is based on city hall’s pettiness due to a city employee not being allowed to bring a puppy to work.
The decision was made by the council on June 14 under an agenda item listed as “consider relocation of Library Facility cat Browser.”
— FOX 32 News (@fox32news) June 27, 2016
Petitions from children and local citizens opposing the eviction made little difference in the Browser’s fate.
Council member Elzie Clements said city hall and city businesses “are no place for animals.”
Now the cat must find a new home within 30 days.
Clements and a fellow Councilman Paul Moore voted in favor of evicting the library cat. Eight people from an audience voiced their support of keeping Browser in the town’s library before the vote was contemplated.
The cat was adopted by White Settlement Public Library in 2010 from an animal shelter and soon became the facility’s mascot.
The library’s web page reveals that Browser’s favorite activities include napping in the staff’s chairs, lounging across computer keyboards when library guests are trying to type, and attending GED classes.
It mentions on the Browser’s page that every year the library sells calendars featuring various photos of its furry mascot. People even donate to help the library maintain Browser’s “posh lifestyle.”
“This cat has been loved by people of all ages for six years,” said Lillian Blackburn, president of the Friends of the White Settlement Public Library. “I don’t have any animals but this cat is so gentle and so lovable and he brings so much comfort to so many people, it seems a shame to take him away.”
Browser even has his own Facebook page. It indicates that he’s been a resident at the library since October 2010.
Mayor White told the Fort-Worth Star-Telegram that the council’s decision to evict the library cat wasn’t just over someone not being able to bring their pup to work; it had to do with the council’s dislike for cats.
“That cat doesn’t have anything to do with whether somebody can have their puppy at City Hall,” White said. “That cat doesn’t hurt anybody. The council just went out and did this on their own because they don’t like cats.”
Browser’s story is featured in White Settlement’s weekly newspaper, Grizzly Detail. Many urged the council to vote in favor of keeping Browser at the library for a host of reason. Some mentioned were his abilities in keeping on top of pest control, attracting young children to the library, and the fact he has so many fans within the city. It was also mentioned that a petition signed by 618 people wanted Browser to remain at the library.
— Hatwoman (@Hatwoman_) June 26, 2016
The only negative people brought up was if library patrons had cat allergies. In that case, the library made clear it would place Browser in a secluded area of the building. However, even people with allergies still fully supported keeping the library cat.
Mayor White hopes the city council will reconsider its decision of evicting Browser in a July 12 meeting. If nothing happens then, his hope that another meeting in November will restore Browser’s right to live at White Settlement Public Library and continue serving as its beloved mascot.
White Settlement is a suburb of Fort Worth.
[Image via Shutterstock]