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Friday, October 12, 2012

Helping to preserve the General Stanton Inn

Walsh helps Charlestown’s Oldest Business Clear Bureaucratic Obstacles
Janice Falcone with Rep. Donna Walsh
News release from Rep. Donna Walsh

Since 1667, the General Stanton Inn has been serving meals to visitors and locals alike, including, it is said, Gen. George Washington. It is the heart of Charlestown’s historic village district and a treasure beyond price. But no food has been served at the Inn for over a year.

In the months since former owner Janice Falcone took back the Inn from its bankrupt owners and saved it from ruin by making a major investment in its repair and renovation, she has been working hard to reopen the Inn to full service.

This summer, Ms. Falcone reopened the Inn for lodgers and recently secured a full-service liquor license from the town. But for four months, she struggled in vain to get the Health Department to approve the Inn’s kitchen so that she can get the necessary town permit to reopen the Inn’s famed restaurant. Though all the required paperwork was done, she was bounced from person to person at the RI Health Department, often having to start from scratch with each new contact.

“No small business should have to go through such an ordeal,” said Rep. Walsh, “but it’s especially important to Charlestown’s economy for the Inn, the anchor of our Historic Village to be fully operational.”

Rep. Walsh took the problem directly to Dr. Ernest Julian, chief of the Department’s Office of Food Protection, for resolution. Less than four days later, the Health Department provided Ms. Falcone with the approval she needs to bring to the Town Council to get the Inn’s restaurant licensed to operate.

“I couldn’t have done it without Donna’s help,” said Janice Falcone. “She’s wonderful!”

Representative Walsh represents House District 36, which covers all of Charlestown and Block Island as well as parts of Westerly and South Kingstown.

For more information, please contact Rep. Walsh at 523-2199 or visit her website at