The fate of Morris's Grill could be decided this week. Skaneateles Town Justice Kathleen Dell said she expected to have her decision on the Seitz Building Corp. v. Morris's Grill Corp. by 10 a.m. Jan. 21, but the case has been adjourned until 4 p.m. Thursday Jan. 22.
The case was aired Jan.14 in Skaneateles Town Court by attorneys Tom Seeley for the Seitz building and Brian Shaw for Morris's. At the center of the arguments is the validity of the lease for the bar in the Seitz building and the ill-timed death of Morris's long-time owner, Darryl "Burt" Lipe.
Dell said Morris's lease had been terminated and not renewed at the end of September. Lipe died Oct. 10.
Shaw argued that once the bar owner, Burt Lipe died, the ownership of the lease passed to his estate and the estate was never served with the proper papers to evict the bar.
"They are not there legally. They have never been there legally," Seeley said.
The lease between Lipe and the Seitz building was active through Sept. 30, 2008, at which time the tenant occupancy agreement expired, and there was an option to renew the lease, a 60-day timeframe from the time the previous lease ran out.
Shaw did not deny receiving notice the lease had been terminated. However, he did reject signing or having his client sign the lease.
"The lease is between Seitz Building Corp. and Burt and with his passing the lease is held by the estate," Shaw said.
According to Seeley, the estate is a legal entity, but at the time the petition was served there was no estate established. The notice was served to Morris's and not to any other person or entity.
"Any interested party needs to be made a part of the petition," Shaw said.