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Millwood A&P Sale On Hold Due To Landlord Objection

The Millwood A&P, pictured in 2014.
The Millwood A&P, pictured in 2014. Photo Credit: Tom Auchterlonie

MILLWOOD, N.Y. -- The proposed $2.4 million sale of the Millwood A&P to an entity owned by Jaime Luna will have to wait, as the bankrupt grocery chain's landlord is seeking an adequate assurance of future financial performance.

P. Daniel Hollis, attorney for landlord Millwood Center, LLC, told bankruptcy Judge Robert Drain at a Thursday hearing that his client's mortgage is up next year and that a refinancing is planned. Not having the assurance, Hollis told the judge, would put his client in a "precarious position," adding it it could jeopardize the livelihood of those in the entire shopping center.

Millwood Center is the owner of Millwood Plaza, a major center for merchants in downtown Millwood that is located at the intersection of Routes 100 and 133. Fellow tenants include the Millwood Post Office, Drug Mart, Tazza Cafe, a Chase bank branch and the Dodd's liquor shop.

Luna's company is called Millwood Merchant, LLC.

Drain's approval of the sale, which is structured by transferring the lease, is needed in order for the handover to close.

In a filing with the court submitted last Friday, Hollis laid out federal criteria for an adequate guarantee of assurance, which include having the financial condition of the assignee (acquirer) of the lease being similar to the previous tenant, and that percentage of rent due will not decline "substantially."

Hollis, in the filing, called for Luna to make a personal guaranty for the matter.

Talks between Hollis and Harlan Levine, a lawyer for the buyer, took place at the courthouse during the afternoon but no agreement was made. The matter has been adjourned to Friday, Nov. 13 at 10 a.m., Hollis told Daily Voice.

Luna's brother, Ruben, won an auction last month for the store before transferring his winning rights to the corporate entity. Asked what brand the store would be operated under should the sale be successful, Levine told Daily Voice that he was not sure.

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