By Stephen J. Kotz
Less than two weeks after the Sag Harbor Village Board of Trustees revoked the license of Page at 63 Main to have outdoor dining on Main Street, the restaurant has won a reprieve.
On Thursday, the restaurant obtained an injunction in New York State Supreme Court, restraining the village from enforcing its ruling, which was made at a July 18 meeting.
By Thursday evening’s dinner hour, the tables—and diners—had returned to the sidewalk.
Tom Horn, a Sag Harbor attorney who represented the restaurant before Justice Denise Malia in Riverhead, in a press release said he believed the court would be inclined to allow the restaurant to keep it seating through the summer season, reducing the financial impact of the village’s ruling.
“It was a good day for fairness today,” Mr. Horn said. “What the village was doing was hurting Page and for no reason other than to try and show that [the village] had the ability to hurt them. To be granted a judgment like this you have to have an extraordinary case. And we did. We had the facts, truth and law on our side and the court awarded what was fair.”
“We are delighted that we will be able to restore our seating and rehire the individuals who unfortunately had to be laid off as a result of this irresponsible revocation of our license. By ruling in our favor it is apparent that the court feels the village has overstepped its bounds” said Joe Traina, one of the restaurant’s owners in a press release.
The village revoked the license after charging that the restaurant had failed to get a building permit for a renovation project, overstepped the planning board’s approvals for that project, and had fire code violations in a wooden Dumpster enclosure.
Sag Harbor Mayor Brian Gilbride declined to comment on the ruling, referring calls to village attorney Denise Schoen, who prosecuted the case for the village.
On Friday afternoon, Ms. Schoen disagreed with Mr. Horn’s take on the way the court was leaning. The judge “was fine with letting them stay open on a temporary basis while we try to work things out,” Ms. Schoen said.
But the village attorney said it would be difficult for the court to ignore the wording of the dining license, which, she said, allows the village to revoke it for “any or no reason at all.”
The parties will return to court on August 12.