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Roos-N-More gets second chance to reopen

Roos-N-More is getting another chance to show Clark County commissioners that it deserves to stay in operation.

The board unanimously agreed on Wednesday to reconsider an Aug. 5 denial of a special use permit for the facility, which has camels, kangaroos, lemurs, monkeys, otters and porcupines.

The action isn’t final and doesn’t guarantee anything to the zoo in Moapa, but it does mean its operators will get to come before the commissioners in five weeks for a second shot.

In the five weeks before that decision, the zoo isn’t allowed to have any events at the facility. It is allowed to take animals to other spots for special events, such as schools.

If the owners fail to get a permit, they will have to find new homes for their collection of about 280 exotic animals.

Chris Kempfer, a representative of the zoo, told commissioners that they’ve been diligently working with the county to move forward.

The zoo is in the district of Commissioner Marilyn Kirkpatrick, who was sworn into office Tuesday. She said she plans to visit the site, adding she would like to see the issue resolved “sooner rather than later.”

The zoo has been closed to the public since January 2014, when a county inspection identified code violations that included a lack of flush toilets or a commercial septic system. None of the problems were tied to the care or condition of the animals.

A few weeks later, county officials agreed to let the operators — husband-and-wife veterinarians Jay and Valerie Holt — resume small private tours at Roos-N-More while a new restroom facility and other improvements were made for larger groups.

The 9-acre attraction has spent more than $300,000 since early 2014 in an effort to bring the zoo up to county code.

Contact Ben Botkin at bbotkin@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2904. Find him on Twitter: @BenBotkin1.

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