Council to Izzi on liquor license: Time to produce

Council to Izzi on liquor license: Time to produce

Areas of the Country Liquor Store in Hope are boarded up and a load of wood sits out front delivered by former councilor John Mahoney, who said he will be the general contractor at the store. Mahoney said he and Nicholas Izzi are waiting for lumber prices to go down before they can rebuild the store. (Breeze photo by Jacquelyn Moorehead)

SCITUATE – Four years after a fire burned the Country Liquor Store in Hope, former shop owner Nicholas Izzi said he will return to the Town Council in December with plans for reconstruction.

The matter came up during last Thursday’s Town Council meeting when Councilor Charles Collins suggested holding off on renewing the Class A alcohol sale license for the empty and boarded-up Country Liquor Store at 10 Hope Furnace Road.

Collins noted that he made the same suggestion when its renewal came up in 2019, and offered Izzi, a member of the Independent Men who held a majority on the council from 2016 to 2018, an additional year to get plans together for the liquor store located at the end of a commercial plaza. Collins previously sat on the council alongside Izzi.

As of last year, Izzi’s lawyer said Izzi planned to rebuild the store, and was waiting on “some legality” to clear up.

The council, at the request of Collins, approved the license last year on the condition that construction be started by this year.

“There is still no building there, and hasn’t been an attempt made as far as I know,” Collins said during the Nov. 12 meeting.

Collins said he would like to see Izzi’s intentions with the building and license before moving forward, including seeing plans or permitting before renewing it.

“I don’t think we should keep a license out there for three years with no building on or no attempt to get a building,” Collins said, adding that he did not want to issue a Class A license to an empty space.

Councilors Tim McCormick and James Brady agreed to give Izzi a chance to come back to the council with his plans to re-open.

Resident Richard Finnegan questioned the rush to revoke Izzi’s license when there are other outstanding licenses in town.

Collins explained to Finnegan that each town is issued a number of Class A liquor licenses based on population. There is one other Class A license at Scituate Beverage at 30 Hartford Pike.

The council unanimously agreed to put the Country Liquor Store’s Class A license on the Dec. 10 council agenda to consider revocation.

In an interview with The Valley Breeze & Observer, Izzi said he’s owned the liquor store that previously sold alcohol, deli sandwiches and groceries for more than 11 years. He said he will bring his plans, which he said he’s had for several years, to the council in December.

“If they expect to see the plans, I’ve got them. I’ve had them for a long time now,” Izzi said.

He said a microwave shorted out in 2016, causing the fire.

Izzi said that he’s had the plans for the building for several years, but has been busy with work. Then COVID-19 hit, he said.

“Lumber prices starting spiking with COVID. It’s triple the price for wood,” Izzi said.

Izzi said he’s found difficulty getting a loan through a bank with people working from home, adding that “everything is backed up.”

“Things are tough for anyone who wants to build right now,” Izzi said.

Izzi said Hope residents often ask him when he plans to rebuild.

Izzi declared his intentions this year to run for council, but didn’t turn in the required signatures to qualify for the ballot.

Comments

That site is an absolute disgrace to the Town. The roof trusses for the build out were left exposed to the elements
with direct contact to the ground for years. The roof trusses should be thrown away. The adjacent site also owned by a firm public official from Scituate looks like a gravel yard. These two site are a safety hazard to the town residents. These abandoned construction sites should be fenced in so children don’t get hurt.