Greenport Village moves to take bakery owners to court

The European Fresh Bakery and Deli opened on South Street in June. (Credit: Cyndi Murray)
The European Fresh Bakery and Deli opened on South Street in June. (Credit: Cyndi Murray)

The Greenport Village Board will take legal action against the owners of a newly opened bakery on South Street.

On Monday, the board voted 5-0 in favor of obtaining a state Supreme Court order to force the owners of European Fresh Bakery & Deli to remove “unsafe and hazardous conditions” that exist at the storefront, according to the approved resolution.

European Fresh Bakery & Deli, which is located at 126 South St., opened in June without proper building permits and without an approved site plan, according to village building department officials. Its owners were issued a violation in July after failing to submit permit application forms to the village, records show. 

Following Monday’s vote, village attorney Joe Prokop called the violation an “imminent life and safety hazard.” However, he declined to provide specifics on the violation, since the allegations have yet to be filed with the Supreme Court.

The deli’s owners could not immediately be reached for comment.

Prior to the vote, Greenport resident Joanne McEntee thanked the Village Board for taking action against the property’s owners, but said more is needed to correct other non-compliant buildings.

“I am glad to see you trying to rectify 126 South Street,” she said. “It used to be my grandmother’s house … I think you need to be more aggressive [in getting other violators to comply].”

Other residents agreed with Ms. McEntee, adding that code enforcement in the village has historically been lax.

“It happens all the time,” said Greenport resident John Saladino. “There is not one person that can’t name five businesses that are in violation. The Planning Board is disappointed with [the lack of enforcement], as are residents.”

Several residents said they believe the Planning Board should have increased enforcement powers over businesses that operate without permits or approved site plans.

“Every member of the Planning Board is upset they have no enforcement power,” resident John Winkler said. “That would probably help the code enforcer.”

While not denying the Village’s code enforcement challenges in the past, Mayor David Nyce said the hire of a new code enforcer earlier this year has helped with the problem.

“There are issues with code enforcement,” Mr. Nyce said. “For a long time, the culture in the village for years has been to ask for forgiveness than permission. No one on this board is happy with code enforcement … That is why we went out and hired a code enforcer.”

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