By Nao Braverman
Dave DiTomaso, owner of the Subway sandwich store in Mira Monte confirmed that he decided not to lease the Matilija Avenue space formerly occupied by Howie's yesterday afternoon. "The bottom line is that I felt bad for the landlord," said DiTamoso. His lease with the building owner, Ernie Salomon, allowed DiTomaso to refrain from paying rent until he acquired the necessary building permits. "I could fight the battle as long as I wanted but he would lose rental income so we mutually agreed to call it off," he said. The temporary moratorium on formula retail and restaurant establishments was approved by the City Council on May 1. It prohibits the issuance of any building permits for chains such as a Subway for 45 days following the May 1 meeting and possibly longer, if the moratorium is extended. "It looks like the rules of the game have changed," he said. "I'm fine with it, I have a number of other shops. Ernie will try to get someone else and I wish him the best of luck," said DiTomaso.