Restaurants ponder reopening

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by Meghan Wayland


Even though restaurants are allowed to open under limited circumstances, some say the continuing restrictions don’t allow them to make a living.

Frank Richardi has been in the restaurant business for 40 years.  Nineteen of them, he’s owned Lago Trattoria in downtown Newport.

“This virus is the worst thing that’s ever happened to the restaurant industry,” he said by phone Saturday.  “Within a year, 60 percent of us will be out of business.”

With above average temps and clear skies on the horizon, Governor Phil Scott hoped to avoid that fate.  He announced restaurants could reopen Friday, May 22, a full week before schedule.  After over two months of little to no business, restaurants suddenly had two days to open their doors — or their rooftops, patios, and sidewalks — to limited customers.

But not everyone decided to jump in.

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