Edgartown selectmen will consider two bids for the Warren House

The Warren House at 62 North Water Street in Edgartown. — File photo by Steve Myrick

Edgartown selectmen received two bids that meet their $2.5 million reserve for the Captain Warren House. In all, there were three bids for the deteriorating structure at 62 North Water Street.

Wayne Grigul and Janet Hiebert together and Jeffrey Wolk for himself offered the minimum required amount. The third bid opened Monday, from Matt Dyoff, was for $1.5 million. The sale of the house is governed by state law regulating the disposal of surplus property.

Selectmen took both $2.5 million bids under advisement and will consult town counsel before making a decision.

The town bought the Warren House for $3.5 million in 2004, as part of a plan to expand the Edgartown Library, which abuts the Warren lot.

Also Monday, selectmen opened two bids to supply a new 2,000-gallon pumper truck for the town fire department. The truck will be used on Chappaquiddick.

Pennsylvania-based KME Kovatch bid $236,983. Firefighting equipment manufacturer Rosenbauer bid $253,360.

Selectmen took the competing bids under advisement

Both the house and the fire truck competitions will be decided next week at their regular meeting, selectmen said.

Beach Access Coalition

Selectmen agreed to write to state Representative Tim Madden in support of the Martha’s Vineyard Beach Access Coalition (MVBAC).

Chappaquiddickers Fran and Bob Clay, along with Ron Domurat, said they started MVBAC in April and have been working to gain the support of local and state officials to change policies that require Chappy beaches to be closed to protect of nesting piping plovers, a threatened species, and their chicks.

“The goal of the MVBAC is to eventually get to our state and local representatives and to put more pressure on the Fish and Wildlife Department to see if they can’t rewrite and revise some of the regulations, so that beaches in Massachusetts have better access,” Ms. Clay told selectmen.

State guidelines say that when chicks are on a barrier beach, managers must close sufficient area to make a 100-yard buffer for the birds. Closures at the height of the summer season are enforced to comply with state and federal laws designed to protect several bird species, including plovers.

In a follow-up conversation with The Times, the Clays said they had approached The Trustees of Reservations (TTOR) to find a way to make the management of beaches and beach closures fairer and more reasonably regulated.

“The coalition evolved after years of frustration because of extreme beach closures,” Mr. Clay said. “We believe that protection of wildlife and beach access don’t need to be mutually exclusive.”

Underground cable

Selectmen also held a public hearing Monday to consider a proposal to run a 1,250-foot underground cable and conduit along Mattakesett Way. The cable will be used to service the town’s solar farm.

Selectmen signed off on the ambitious three-site utility scale solar energy project in July 2011. Town leaders expect the project will generate enough electricity to power all town buildings and make excess power to sell.

As part of the agreement, Edgartown reserved the right to use a 20-acre parcel bordering Mattakesett Way and Aero Avenue, a dirt road that runs along the Katama airfield, for its own use.

Judy Valentine, an abutter to the project, had a question. “I would like to state this is the first public forum as an abutter that we’ve been invited to or notified of,” Ms. Valentine said. “I’m curious why there was no other notice.”

Selectman Margaret Serpa said notices had been sent before Monday’s meeting. “I believe there were notices sent by the planning board and conservation, as well as to both Vineyard newspapers,” Ms. Serpa said.

“Seeing as this is still just a cable buried underground as usual, I’ll move that we accept the application,” selectman Michael Donaroma said.