Updated 04/13/2012 09:07 PM
Petco store set to reopen
Johnson City’s controversial pet store is reopening. Seven months after the Southern Tier was hit with severe flooding, Petco says its store will reopen Monday. As our Elyse Mickalonis tells us, the company is still upset over loosing so many animals in the flood and they’ve got a new policy to hopefully prevent future tragedies.
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JOHNSON CITY, N.Y. -- This is what the parking lot of Petco in Johnson City looked like seven months ago when Tropical Storm Lee flooded the Southern Tier. The store is set to reopen Monday. The company's Vice President of Regional Operations gave an update and tour of the building on Harry L. Drive Friday.
“We wanted to come back to the community. We promised we’d be back to support the community,” said John Drew, Petco Vice President of Regional Operations.
Nearly one hundred animals died after not being evacuated from the store during the flood. Officials say they have a new policy specific to flood plains to prevent another tragedy.
"In this location, have specific directions to evacuate animals quickly and safely without a problem,” said Drew.
The store will no longer sell any animals, but will house an adoption center for many critters from cats and dogs to rats.
“It's run by Flutterbyes animal rescue group, which is a local animal shelter in the Johnson City area,” said Drew.
Karen Utter, Flutterbyes Director, added, "All of us together, bringing rescues together, opening the center. The more resources you have, the more animals you can help."
Everyone here says they’re upset about what happened during the flooding last year, but they’re glad to be back in the community and to provide a place for these animals to be adopted.
"During the tragedy here, there was no one affected more by it than the associates here. We all have pets of our own. Certainly, we are very concerned about the situation,” said Drew. “We're just glad to be back here and be able to support the community, especially with the pet adoptions."
Utter added, "Tragedy happens, you move on. You learn from it."
To ensure the safety of many furry friends.