New liquor store set to open
Shepherdstown soon will be the home of a new liquor store. The store, One Stop Liquor and More, will be located in a commercial building at 207 S. Princess St., next to H-Mart and the current site of the Shepherdstown Police Station. The business is owned by Mohsen Sadegazadeh.
The minimum bid for the license was $77,045. Licenses are good for 10 years, at which point they go up for bid again.
Sadegazadeh and his lawyer, Kin Sayre, were present at Tuesday’s Town Council meeting to seek comment from the public for consideration by the West Virginia Alcohol Beverage Control Administration’s Retail Liquor Licensing Board. According to Sayre, in November 2009, the WVABCA relocated a retail liquor license from Jefferson County to within Shepherdstown’s borders. The WVABCA issues licenses based on population, and the licenses are restricted to certain localities. The licenses are only good for a store operating within a designated area, which, in this case, is Shepherdstown.
According to WVABCA spokesman Gig Robinson, the WVABCA based its decision to relocate a liquor license to Shepherdstown on population changes.
“Looking at demographic shifts, the Retail Liquor Licensing Board added one retail outlet to Shepherdstown, in Zone 35,” Robinson said.
During Tuesday’s Town Council meeting, Mayor Jim Auxer asked the other members if they had any questions about the liquor license. Most did not.
“It is a commercial strip, and it’s a permitted use. I don’t see a problem with it,” Councilman David Springer said.
Meredith Wait, president of the Shepherdstown Business Association, asked what the business hours of the store would be. Sayre responded, saying that Mohsen had no intention of keeping his store open past 9 or 10 p.m.
“Those hours, that would be good,” Auxer said. “When we are affected by alcohol problems, it’s usually later in the night, once people cross the border from Maryland, once their bars close.”
According to law, local governments have a right to comment upon applications before the RLLB for consideration by that body. However, they cannot overrule the decision of the RLLB should it decide to award a retail liquor license to Sadegazadeh’s business.
Sadegazadeh also owns convenience stores in Berkeley County. According to Sayre, One Stop Liquor and More would be his only retail liquor store.
With the comments of the Town Council and the public in hand, Sayre says that his client’s application is ready to go before the RLLB. Sayre said the RLLB still has to inspect the location and conduct a background check on Sadegazadeh before a retail liquor license can be issued.