BETHPAGE - The owner of a Bethpage deli and catering company had the gas restored to her store Saturday evening after it was shut off by National Grid.
Imma Cancalino is the matriarch of a family-run deli called Francesco's Fine Foods, which opened on Broadway less than three months ago. She says her stove suddenly stopped working on Friday.
Cancalino says she had definitely paid her bill, so she wasn't sure what the problem was. Eventually, she and her brother went outside to find that a lock had been attached to the gas meter.
Cancalino called National Grid several times, but she says she was never given a straight answer as to why the gas was shut off.
The timing couldn't have been any worse, Cancalino says. On Saturday morning, she and her workers make everything fresh for their catering orders, and now all of that business has been lost. From catering alone, she says she lost $3,000 today, and that doesn't count walk-in customers.
"It's embarrassing," she says. "People are going to think, 'What, these people are not paying their bills?'"
National Grid told News 12 that a meter on the property shows substantial usage, but has never been registered. The spokesperson says it's possible that the store uses more than one meter, and must apply for an application to register the second line.
National Grid says it sent a notice in the mail a month ago, but Cancalino says she never got one.
After the Francesco's Fine Foods story aired on News 12, the lock on their meter was gone and it is business as usual at the storefront. Cancalino says that the whole situation could have been avoided with better communication with the gas company.
National Grid told her they will be in touch later this week to fully resolve that meter issue.
Cancalino says that County Executive Ed Mangano made a call to National Grid on her behalf after he heard about the ordeal.