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Stella D'Oro Factory To Close Down

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A baking institution in the Bronx will soon shut its doors.

Stella D'Oro announced Monday that the bakery in Kingsbridge will close down for good in 90 days.

The closing comes after Local 50, the union that represents the 130 workers, and the company could not come to an agreement over wage concessions.

Workers had been on strike since last August.

A judge recently ruled in favor of the workers, saying Stella D'Oro did not bargain in good faith because it did not release its 2007 financial statement.

The company was ordered to give workers back pay and allow them to come back to work. Workers were told to show up Tuesday morning, but Stella D'Oro says it still plans to shut down in October.

"These folks were eager to come back to work, and now they have no where to go back to work to. So it's a blow to them, their families and, on a larger scale, to this whole community," said Community Board 8 Chairman Damian McShane.

"I'm sad for the people who are working there. They've been there for a long time. And if they leave, what's going to happen with them?" said one Kingsbridge resident.

"Every time I would come by I would smell the aroma of the cookies, of the baking, etc. So I will miss that. And then I would associate that and go pick up some of their products as a result. So that's what we'll miss, I'm sure," said another Kingsbridge resident.

The chairman of Community Board 8 says he worries about what another empty building will mean for this area.

"You can see right behind us here we've had a vacant store for a better part of a decade," said McShane. "You know you can't fill commercial space in a lot of communities here, especially in the outer boroughs."

In a statement, the company says the only thing that could've saved the plant was "a willingness to compromise that the union never exhibited."

A spokeswoman for Local 50 isn't formally commenting on the matter, but says she is meeting with members and will explore every option.

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