I live in DC and have a rodent problem. DC has a program that allows you to adopt a blue collar working cat. I think it is basically a trap-neuter-return type program, but instead of returning them, they give them to people who will give them an outdoor shelter and feed them daily. We are not looking for a pet and wouldn't want to commit to much more than a kitty tube (probably a DIY one), a small sand filed section of our garden for a litter box that we would clean regularly, putting out food and water in the morning, and maybe a heated cat pad for really cold winter days.
I understand that feral cats can be a touchy subject (bird lovers seem to hate them and cat lovers love them), but I am looking for an objective answer highlighting the pros and cons of essentially habituating a feral cat that my yard is a consistent place to get a meal and sleep. How much responsibility is having a working cat?