By Susan Richard
The rescue organization, which has a nine month discounted lease, is being kicked out to make way for restaurants and a bowling alley. The lease is not up until November, but the mall exercised a clause which allowed them to terminate the lease early. Pets4Luv says mall officials then reneged on a verbal promise of a different location within the Westfield Sunrise, for which founder Dave Bernacchi told 1010 WINS they’d even given them the keys to measure for necessary construction.
In a written statement to 1010 WINS last week , mall management said the arrangement with Pets4Luv was never long-term, and the time had come to move forward with planned improvements to the shopping center and the space is required for that work. They also said the other space was no longer available.
As of today, Bernacchi says 35 of their 50 cats are still waiting to be adopted or fostered until they find a new location.
He says the mall offered to house the cats in a storage area that is off-limits to the public for a month, but Pets4Luv doesn’t have enough money to construct another habitat for the animals, which would last for only 30 days. He says they’re in talks with three other possible locations but have nothing solid yet. Lawyers for Pets4Luv, meanwhile are continuing to try to get the stay at Westfield Sunrise extended.