Oak Bluffs taxpayers asked to pay on top for county services


Among the articles Oak Bluffs voters will be asked to consider at special town meeting Tuesday is a request for $5,795 to help pay for the cost of operating Dukes County’s Integrated Pest Management (IPM) department, a one-man operation that focuses primarily on catching rats.

The executive summary provided by county manager Russell Smith states that the program provides discounted services for schools and other public buildings. “All schools are mandated by the state to have an Integrated Pest Management Plan. If they were to go to a private contractor the cost would be significantly higher,” Mr. Smith wrote.

That contribution of taxpayer dollars would come on top of the county assessment levied against Oak Bluffs, $126,072 in the next fiscal year.

In addition, the county charges each town $300 for school IPM services.

This spring, in an effort to better describe what taxpayers receive for their contribution of tax dollars, The Times requested copies of the monthly department reports T.J. Hegarty, IPM department head, provides to Mr. Smith.

Mr. Smith provided reports from July 2010 to January 2011, the first seven months of the 2011 fiscal year.

The reports provide little detail.

Mr. Hegarty noted visits to “OB” August 4, 12, 16, and Nov. 2. He noted visits to “Buddies,” a garage, on August 4, December 16, 18, and January 14.