Edgartown dredge committee chairman resigns

Edgartown selectmen accepted the resignation of Norman Rankow, chairman of the dredge advisory committee, at their meeting on Monday, Feb. 6. The selectmen thanked Mr. Rankow for 15 years of work with the town-owned dredge.

“I hereby wish to submit my resignation from the dredge advisory committee, effective today,” Mr. Rankow wrote in a February 2 letter to town administrator Pam Dolby. “I believe it is time to take a break from some of my responsibilities.”

Mr. Rankow’s resignation comes after members of the dredge advisory committee and the conservation commission raised questions about a recent project done by the town-owned dredge.

The conservation commission recently cited the owners of property on Katama Bay for dredging around a dock without the required permits.

Also Monday, selectmen approved an aquaculture license for Jeremy Scheffer, who intends to begin raising oysters in Katama Bay.

Shellfish constable Paul Bagnall said there are now 11 licensed aquaculture operations in the bay. The town policy limits the number of licenses to 12.

Mr. Bagnall said the oyster farms are thriving, and he said the license holders have worked hard to be good neighbors.

“Compared to off Island, we’ve had few complaints,” Mr. Bagnall said. “There have been relatively good relations with the riparian owners. We’ve managed to head off most controversy.”