North Adams Transcript
CHESHIRE -- Patrons of Whitney’s Farm Market will soon be able to shop for beer and wine at the South State Road store, after Selectmen granted a license to the business at Tuesday night’s meeting.
Owner Eric Whitney de scribed the move as part of an initiative to create a "new, nicer market," saying microbrews, local beer and wines are targeted.
"It won’t be a huge selection like a liquor store. We just want it there for convenience and to go along with some of the other items we sell," Whitney said.
Selectmen unanimously approved the beer and wine license request. Planning Board member Charles Howard Jr. raised the only question, inquiring whether the new addition creates a need to reclassify the business as something other than a farm stand.
"[The owners] have done a wonderful job at the farm stand, and it’s grown immensely over the years," Howard said. "I just wonder if it’s getting away from a farm stand and moving into the retail sale of items."
Richard Isacoff, the farm’s attorney, answered the question to the satisfaction of Howard and Selectmen.
"That’s doubtful, because they are already selling pre-packaged farm stand items," Isacoff said. "The whole issue of what a farm stand is has changed so radically in the last five to six years. ... As many farm stands have expanded, they’ve naturally gotten into pre-packaged items."
The store can begin selling the new wares once it provides the town with floor plan indicating where the alcohol will be sold.
In other business, Selectmen hired Brandon M. Gallagher as the town’s first full-time police officer. Gallagher was one of three applicants for the position, and had previously worked on the town’s police force part-time.
An extra $12,000 was set aside in the town’s fiscal 2013 budget for the creation of the position. Cheshire Police Chief Timothy Garner advocated for the post.
Selectmen went into executive session at the close of the meeting to enter into negotiations with former Town Ad ministrator, and current Interim Administrator, Mark Webber. Webber stepped into the role shortly after former Admini strator Thomas Webb left back in May, headed for an administrator’s position in Clarksburg which he began that month.
Selectwoman Carol Fran ces coni said the town’s road forward in filling the position is still up in the air.
"When [former Town Administrator] Tom [Webb] left, we called [Webber] and he’s filling in. Over the next few weeks we’ll decide what we’re going to do."