Community rallies behind business after Lehman Township winery receives violation of zoning ordinance

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LEHMAN TOWNSHIP, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A Luzerne County family is fighting to keep their business alive after Lehman township officials say their business is in violation of a zoning ordinance, but the owners of the local winery disagree.

The owners of Pisano Family Wines say they aren’t in violation of the zoning ordinance and have a lot of questions about why a notice was given.

“It’s like, what are we going to do? This is our livelihood. This is our primary income, and we put everything into it,” says co-owner of Pisano Family Wines, Allison Pisano.

Off of Route 29, in Lehman Township, sits Pisano Family Wines, which has been open since March of 2019. It was the Pisano family’s dream come true— until this August when the family-owned business received a notice of violation from the Lehman Township Zoning Office.

“Just really confused and hurt being that the Township approved for us to do this, and that we went full steam and put all our resources into it,” says Pisano.

The notice states the winery is in violation of a zoning ordinance stating that the winery is located in an agricultural district.

“But wineries fall under the agricultural zoning,” explained Pisano.

Wine is produced, processed and sold on the property, which is why they are unsure why they’ve received the notice.

They are fighting back, and the community is now rallying behind them with more than 700 signatures on a petition ahead of the next zoning meeting.

Pisano says she feels that family tradition is being stomped on.

“Unnecessarily too! If we had any reason that we were doing anything wrong, we would love to be able to fix it, and they aren’t even giving us a chance to know what that is before the hearing, which I think isn’t fair,” said Pisano.

That meeting is on October 14 at 6:00 p.m. at the Lehman Township Municipal Building.

Eyewitness News has reached out to Lehman Township officials but has not heard back yet.

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