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Staples to buy former convent in Canton

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CANTON — Canton accountant Brian W. Staples is buying the former home of the St. Vincent de Paul Society’s thrift store for a consolidation of his office and home.

“It’s a change-of-life acquisition,” Mr. Staples said.

The sale of 39 Court St. by St. Mary’s Catholic Church has not gone through yet.

“I have an accepted offer. It is my intent to buy it. I expect it will go through,” Mr. Staples said. “It came up and it offered the opportunity for an apartment upstairs and my office downstairs. My plan isn’t fully formulated yet.”

The house was listed at $100,000, but Mr. Staples would not reveal the sale price.

The two-story house once was a rectory and convent. It most recently housed the thrift store, which moved from Powers Street to Court Street after St. Mary’s sold the Powers Street home.

The thrift store is moving to 7-9 Main St., along with the Church & Community Program, which also operates a thrift shop and a food pantry. The organizations will both be on the first floor, have separate entrances and be divided by a wall.

The house at 39 Court St. appeals to Mr. Staples even if his plans change because it has parking and could be a professional office on a main street close to the St. Lawrence County Courthouse. He operates out of a business complex at 30 Court St. that he owns with Ted L. Lawrence.

Mr. Lawrence and his wife, Phyllis T., are moving into retirement, having sold McCarthy’s Restaurant, their longtime business, in 2011. Mr. Staples said he also has reduced the volume of work his certified public accounting agency handles so a smaller office for his operations would be adequate.

The 30 Court St. building is not formally on the market but could be sold, Mr. Staples said.

The St. Thomas More Newman Center, 33 Court St., also owned by the parish, remains for sale.

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