Oak Bluffs selectmen agree to hire police officer


At their Tuesday meeting, Oak Bluffs selectmen agreed to authorize police chief Erik Blake to hire a new police officer to replace Sgt. George Fisher, who retired July 1. Because the new officer will probably not be on the payroll until December 15, Chief Blake said he will save about $24,300 from his salary budget. Selectmen hope to utilize that savings to provide animal control services. They are exploring a cost-sharing arrangement with Tisbury.

Selectmen accepted a bid from Buddy’s Auto and Truck Repair, the only bid submitted, to repair and maintain town vehicles at a labor rate of $90 per hour. The total value of bid for the three-year contract is $69,000.

They also accepted a bid from Powers Electric for electrical work, at an hourly rate of $65. That rate is substantially lower than the amount Powers Electric has charged the town for several years, according to selectmen. The total value of the three-year electrical services contract is $33,465. The only other bidder, Perry Electric, submitted a bid of $75 per hour for electrical work.

The bidding process comes after a sharp reprimand from the state attorney general’s office, after ruling the town violated public procurement laws in securing trade services.

Also Tuesday, selectmen approved a one-day beer and wine license for the Martha’s Vineyard Museum fundraising event September 17 at the Shepard Fine Art Space; approved a change in business name and manager for the Martha’s Vineyard Chowder House alcohol license; and appointed Elizabeth Mansure, a commercial fisherman, to the shellfish committee.

The selectmen then went into executive session. The reason, according to the posted agenda, was “to consider the discipline or dismissal of, or to hear complaints or charges brought against a public officer, employee, staff member, or individual.”