Popular bakery in Apex home works to stay in compliance

APEX, NC (WTVD) -- The Town of Apex is at odds with a family who converted part of their home into a bakery to create a growing business.

The town says Utica Bakery, located in a neighborhood on Apex Barbecue Road, is in violation of code.

Philip DeSimone, the father of the bakery owner, said he feels Utica Bakery, is almost like a speakeasy because appointments have to be made to pick up orders at the location, and they can't sell on site, but they can ship or deliver.

The Town of Apex told ABC11 these are the stipulations under their permit - which is called a "home occupation."

"We're in the process of setting up online sales," DeSimone said, "so it'll be easier for the people to order online and we can deliver to them, or in our parking lot it's actually a separate address."

He said their family started the bakery because his son, Vinny DeSimone, 22, gets seizures, can't drive and this is his way of making a living.

"This was a way for him to still have an opportunity in his field," Philip said, "plus we're able to monitor him and make sure he has a safe environment."

The Town has found them in violation of zoning laws for selling there before and said their commercial oven has to go if they want to stay in compliance with building codes.

The bakery, which has only been around since November, posted a survey online to see if it has support from its neighbors.

The Town told ABC11 that the bakery is no longer violating zoning laws as it stopped selling on site, adding:

"We echo the support that the community has for Utica baker - we want this home-based business to succeed. Town staff is working with the bakery to help them comply with State building code ... This is the same way we treat all businesses, whether home-based or located in commercial spaces, throughout Apex."

"We want to work together as a community," Philip DeSimone said. "We want to work together with the town. So I just hope we can come to a solution and just work together."
Copyright © 2020 WTVD-TV. All Rights Reserved.