A 75-year-old man who repairs and sells used bicycles from his home in Portsmouth, N.H., is fighting a cease and desist order from City Hall.
Tony Tzortzakis has been ordered to shut down the bicycle business after a neighbor complained about him storing and selling bicycles outside his home.
The city looked into the matter, and discovered that they hadn’t issued a permit for Tzortzakis’s business since 1991, and that was only for selling bicycles from inside his home.
Currently, the city says he’s storing bicycles and conducting sales outside his home, which isn’t allowed in that area. At least one neighbor has complained about the appearance of his property.
Portsmouth’s zoning enforcer told SeaCoastOnline.com that the city is trying to work with Tzortzakis to rectify the problem. Apparently the city could assess fines and penalties against Tzortzakis, but has declined to go that route.
The city should find a way to help Tzortzakis. Given the sour economy, home-based bicycle businesses are one way that people can make ends meet. He shouldn’t have to hire lawyers and buy permits to operate.
Some neighborhoods would consider a home business that repairs and sells bicycles as a convenience, not a nuisance.
We hope that the city and Tzortzakis can resolve this without too much cost.