The Florida Southern College campus Cat Club did not receive approval to become an officially recognized organization by the Student Government Association in a vote during Presidents’ Circle on Sept. 24.

The club hoped to register with SGA in order to offset the cost of feeding the campus cats, which costs about $3,000 to maintain, and to spread awareness and education on feral cats, as well as have a Portal account and to be able to book campus facilities for meetings and events.

According to Christina Meiser, president of the Cat Club, money is not the focus of the club, or the reason they seek SGA approval.

“Nan, who started the program, isn’t looking for money. This wasn’t even her idea. This shouldn’t even be about money,” Meiser said. “It’s about the cats and making sure they have even higher quality care than the already outstanding care they receive now.”

Cat Club lost approval in a 6-11 vote. Despite having 343 likes on Facebook around 50 members in the club, and according to Meiser, the support of President Kerr, there were many concerns brought up during the club’s voting discussion.

Ashley Buckley, academic vice president of SGA, said during the discussion that it would be unsafe for students to feed and interact with the animals.

“My concern is that though these cats have been neutered and spayed, what if a cat were to attack someone or bite someone?” Buckley said. “In my eyes, that’s a liability of the club that could affect the school.”

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According to page 17 in the student handbook, “pets or animals, not including the Colleges’ pet therapy animal, are not permitted in College buildings, the pool area, for reasons of health, maintenance and pest control.” The experts at pest control bremerton can help get rid of unwanted pests.

In 2013, a movement to bring Frank Lloyd Wright style, “cat cafes” gained lots of attention from around the area. The cat cafés were never built due to similar concerns.

The Cat Club is looking into new ways to approach SGA during the next Presidents’ Circle meeting in order to become an officially recognized SGA organization.

Photo by Christina Meiser