To the Editor:
Richdale has again applied for a license to sell liquor. While I understand the challenges of running a small business, establishing a liquor store in a residential area along Topsfield Road would be a disaster for our neighborhood. I would have thought after the first Board of Selectman hearing in April that owner of Richdale would have seen the neighborhood opposition to the proposal and reconsidered his application by exploring other more community friendly opportunities.
The decision to grant a liquor license is not about customer demand or even a specific business bottom line, but instead is about the about identifying business opportunities that is best in keeping with our community. That is why a hearing before a Licensing Board is required - to get the feedback of those that this decision will have the greatest impact. Our neighborhood unanimously spoke last April and overwhelmingly rejected this proposal. Since his neighbors are opposed we hope Mr. Abdelmalak would do the right thing and withdraw his application. We support Richdale as part of the community, but the decision to grant a liquor license is not about picking a wining or losing business but what is best for citizens in Wenham. When the Selectmen choose to award a liquor license, the winner must be the entire community and not just an individual business.
I would urge the Selectman to do what is best for the local families this decision impacts - and reject the application. We all want what is best for Wenham and this proposal is clearly not the best choice.