Authors Posts by Tony Omer

Tony Omer

Tony Omer
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— Mae Deary

Chairman of the West Tisbury selectmen Jeffrey “Skipper” Manter announced that Tuesday, September 16, is the deadline to submit nomination papers to the registrar of voters to fill the position of West Tisbury town moderator.

Voters will chose a new moderator at a special election on November 4 in conjunction with state elections. Tara Whiting, town clerk and registrar, said 20 signatures are required on the nomination papers. The last day to register to vote is October 15.

The special election is needed to fill the vacancy left by the murder of longtime moderator Pat Gregory on May 16 in northern California. Mr. Gregory, 69, and his hiking companion, a 76-year-old male friend from the small nearby town of Manton were just off heavily traveled Highway 36E, north of the county seat of Red Bluff in Tehama County, when they encountered a man who robbed and then shot them. There have been no arrests in the case.

In other town business Wednesday night, selectmen granted Animal Health Care Associates (AHC), located adjacent to the Martha’s Vineyard Airport, an extension to October 14 for the completion of work to add soundproofing material to its kennel facility in order to reduce the noise of barking dogs. The barking dogs have been a source of complaints from neighbors in the nearby Coffin’s Field subdivision.

Rosemary Haigazian, AHC attorney, requested a 30-day extension of the August 24 deadline. In a letter, homeowner Gary Friedman, representing Coffin’s Field neighbors, requested that selectmen only grant a seven-day extension.

Selectmen extended the deadline until October 14, 50 days, to reduce the likelihood that AHC would return for an additional extension. Ms. Haigazian said the materials for the work were delivered but that a health issue prevented owner and veterinarian Steven Atwood from doing the work he had planned to do with his son. A builder has been hired who will begin the work as soon as his schedule permits, she said. She added there was a delay in receiving permission from the airport commission, the holder of their lease.

Also Wednesday, town administrator Jennifer Rand said the Massachusetts department of transportation (DOT) will construct a sidewalk along both sides of a short section of State Road in front of the Howes House on one side and between the two entrances to the Alley’s Store parking lot on the other. She said that the DOT has indicated it will not be brick but either asphalt or concrete and that the town must agree to maintain the sidewalk after it is built. Selectman Richard Knabel said he would prefer concrete. Selectman Cynthia Mitchell and Mr. Manter agreed. They said that the sidewalk should end at the western end of the Howes House and not extend to the Field Gallery where it might reduce the number of parking spaces in front of the town-owned property.

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Zaneta Pavelka kicks back in a top by designer and former Vineyard resident Valerie Beggs. — Chandler Elizabeth Cook

A fashion show highlighting clothes and accessories by Martha’s Vineyard designers and a sale of art and collectibles are two annual events at the Chicken Alley Thrift Store this weekend.

Woodland Waders, modeled by Zaneta Pavelka, left, and Veronika Haragova, are designs inspired by the Island lifestyle. They were created by designer and former Vineyard resident Valerie Beggs.
Woodland Waders, modeled by Zaneta Pavelka, left, and Veronika Haragova, are designs inspired by the Island lifestyle. They were created by designer and former Vineyard resident Valerie Beggs.

Thrift Shop patrons are made up of three main groups, according to store manager Sandy Pratt. Donors; those who are looking for specific things, be it an article of clothing, place settings, books, or a decorative or collectible item to add to their collection; and those who stalk the aisles looking for treasures. Sunday, August 17, is a day for the treasure hunters at the Martha’s Vineyard Community Services Thrift Shop, known as the Chicken Alley, located in Vineyard Haven.

Art and collectibles culled by staff from donations over the past year are offered to the public at the annual art show and tent sale from 1 to 5 pm. The show was originally the idea of art devotee Olga Hirshhorn of Vineyard Haven, benefactress of the Smithsonian Institute’s Hirshhorn Museum in Washington, D.C., who has lent her support to this event since she first suggested the show as a way to raise money for Martha’s Vineyard Community Services, an Island nonprofit that provides a range of health and human services for the Island.

Needle Book Vol.2 Community Couture Fashion Show

The statuesque Noavakay Knight is marketing coordinator for Chicken Alley. The Vineyard Haven native is also a model and a dress designer who specializes in using recycled clothes and fabrics. When the tent was raised several years ago for the Chicken Alley art show a few days before the actual event, she thought she could put it to good use on one of the days it was just creating shade for the parking lot. Last year she organized the first Needle Book Community Couture Fashion Show. It was a success.

This Friday, August 15, 18 models will walk the catwalk showing off fashions by seven Vineyard designers at the second annual show. Each designer will show six pieces on the runway. A selection of vintage and designer clothing, shoes, and accessories will be on sale before and after the show.

Music will be provided by DJ Pretty Ninja and food will be available from the ArtCliff Food Truck. Not Your Sugar Mamas chocolate company will serve samples and treats for sale, and there will be a free photo booth.

In addition to Ms. Knight, the following designers will be represented.

Valerie Beggs, who developed Woodland Waders, a collection of Island inspired clothes, more than a dozen years ago when she lived on the Vineyard before moving to Pennsylvania to take a job as a designer for Woolrich. Retired from Woolrich, she now is a freelance designer of outdoor gear and backpacks. She is donating dozens of sample pieces from her personal collection, a retrospective of her three main lines of clothing.

Chrysal Parrot is a fashion designer and custom dressmaker who creates pieces that range from the historical to the whimsically contemporary. She works from her own boutique called Demi-Monde on State Road in Vineyard Haven.

Randi Sylvia and her mother Marlene DiStefano work from their Studioshop in the Arts District of Oak Bluffs. They are the design team behind the label Kenworthy that features looks influenced by cultures from around the world.

Karen Trotier, formerly Russillo, creates her unique fashions from her boutique, Menagerie, in Edgartown.

Beldan Radcliffe, who works out of Night Heron Gallery in Vineyard Haven, is best known as a printmaker and collage artist. Some of her work includes recombining recycled sweaters into wearable art. She calls these creations Upcycled Sweaters.

Sylvie Farrington is the creator of the popular Sylvie Bags, one-of-a-kind handbags and pillows made from authentic vintage fabrics. She works from her home in West Tisbury.

The work of jeweler Jessica Helen of Hawks House Jewelry will also be on display. Ms. Helen lives in Aquinnah.

2nd Annual Needle Book Vol.2 Community Couture Fashion Show, Sample Sale, and Boutique, Friday, August 15, 5–8 pm, Chicken Alley Thrift Shop, Vineyard Haven. $10.

Chicken Alley Art and Collectibles Sale, Sunday, August 17, 1–5 pm, Chicken Alley Thrift Shop, Lagoon Pond Rd., Vineyard Haven.  Proceeds from both shows benefit Martha’s Vineyard Community Services. For more information, call the Thrift Shop at 508-693-2278 or visit mvcommunityservices.com/events

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Two houses and all assets go to Island groups after the death of Lorraine Pinckney.

The Pinckney house.
Lorraine and Napoleon "Nap" Pinckney of Oak Bluffs left their two houses and assets to Island nonprofits.
Lorraine and Napoleon “Nap” Pinckney of Oak Bluffs left their two houses and assets to Island nonprofits.

Lorraine and Napoleon Pinckney moved to Oak Bluffs full time in 1996 after vacationing on the Vineyard for many years. Mr. Pinckney, a professor of microbiology, parasitology, and clinical chemistry at New York Community College, died in 2010 at the age of 90. Ms. Pinckney died in July at the age of 75. The couple had no children, but in spirit they adopted the Island.

Last week, several Island nonprofits learned that they were the beneficiaries of the Pinckney estate. The Island Housing Trust (IHT), an nonprofit that develops affordable housing, was informed that it would receive one of two houses the couple owned in Oak Bluffs.

The Pinckney estate left a second Oak Bluffs house to Island Elderly Housing, a nonprofit that manages affordable rental apartments for the Island’s low-income elderly and disabled. They left their personal property to Martha’s Vineyard Community Services. Other assets will be distributed to those groups as well as an Island nursing association, Ms. Pinckney’s brother, John Dombrow, told The Times in a conversation from his home in Apple Valley, Minnesota.

“They had no children and no heirs,” Mr. Dombrow said. “They were frugal and generous people who loved the Vineyard. I know they decided to leave everything to the Island several years ago.”

The Pinckneys moved to the Island after Mr. Pinckney, known as “Nap,” retired. Ms. Pinckney, a registered nurse, went to work for the MVCS visiting nurse service. She retired in 2008 but continued serving the Island community as a volunteer for Island Elderly Housing and the Meals on Wheels program.

The Pinckneys purchased a house in Oak Bluffs before moving to the Vineyard and purchased a second soon after they arrived. “They did most of the maintenance work themselves,” Mr. Dobrow said. “She was heavily into projects and tools. She was a charter member of the Handyman Club of America, and the Craftsman Club. She was also a volunteer with the Surgeon General’s Medical Reserve Corps.”

“It came as a complete surprise,” said IHT executive director Philippe Jordi. “We have no immediate plans to use the house. It will have to be inspected and assessed before we can even begin to think about what we will do with it. We are extremely grateful to both Nap and Lorrie Pinckney for their incredibly generous gift to the Island community.”

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Rykerr Maynard as Peter Pan, and Katie Feeks as Wendy. — Katrina Nevin

Wendy, Michael, and John will fly high over the stage following Peter Pan in the new production of the musical “Peter Pan,” based on the play by James M. Barrie, an Island Theatre Workshop (ITW) production.

From left: Jesse Seward, Brad Austin, Jim Osborn, Corrine deLangevant, and Bob Dusa rehearse for ITW's "Peter Pan."
From left: Jesse Seward, Brad Austin, Jim Osborn, Corrine deLangevant, and Bob Dusa rehearse for ITW’s “Peter Pan.”

The performance includes a cast and crew of more than 40 people, in which ITW has hired the flying masters from ZFX (Zealous Flying Effects), a flying company headquartered in Louisville, Ken., to build the necessary structures to send Peter and his adopted family high above the stage.

Islander Kevin Ryan, who directed last year’s extravaganza, “The Wizard of Oz,” is directing this year’s show, and New Yorker James Higgins is the musical director. Lee Fierro, director of ITW for more than 40 years, is artistic consultant for “Peter Pan.”

The large cast is loaded with skilled and accomplished actors and singers. The lead role of Peter is played by Rykerr Maynard, who played the scarecrow in last year’s show. Katie Feeks plays Wendy, Jesse Seward is Captain Hook, Jaiden Edelman is Michael, and Jared Livingston is John. Shelly Brown and Brad Austin play the parents, the Darlings.

“Peter Pan,” August 16–24 (no show August 20), 7:30 pm, M.V. Regional High School Performing Arts Center. Sunday matinees at 3 pm when the audience can meet and greet the cast. $22; $12 for children.

Special Preview Night: August 15, 7:30 pm, benefits Martha’s Vineyard Center for Living. $25; $12 children.

For more information, call 508-737-8550. For tickets, visit Ticketsmv.com. Tickets also available at the door.

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Suz Slezak and David Wax make up David Wax Museum. — David Wax Museum

The indie-Americana-folk-rock group David Wax Museum featuring David Wax and Suz Slezak return to play Flatbread Thursday evening after a successful engagement there last summer.

David Wax incorporates instruments and musical forms from a broad range of traditional styles from North and South America, defying easy classification. Mr. Wax likes to call his blend of music “Mexo-Americana, bringing together a lot of traditional musical things that become new forms.”

At last summer’s show the band’s fusion of traditional Mexican folk with American roots and indie rock kept the crowd dancing through the night to rhythms that inspired members of the audience to break out the tango and samba dance moves.

The band incorporates a wide array of instruments, including Mexican guitars, an accordion, a Cajun drum box, and a donkey’s jawbone. The repertoire usually includes older hits, as well as singles from their newer albums. Knock Knock Get Up is their newest album, released in 2012.

David Wax immersed himself in Mexico’s rich traditional music culture, son mexicano, during trips south of the border, including a yearlong Harvard fellowship, learning from the form’s living masters.

Suz Slezak was homeschooled by her father on a small farm in rural Virginia and reared on old-time, Irish, classical, and folk music. The two met in 2007 and began blending their unique musical perspectives to form the band.

David Wax Museum has released four albums: Its first in 2008, I Turned Off Thinking About; its second, Carpenter Bird in 2009; and the critically acclaimed album Everything Is Saved in 2011, featuring the song “Born with a Broken Heart,” which was named Song of the Year at the Boston Music Awards.

The band, which is often featured on the local folk music station WUMB, won a contest for a spot at the 2010 Newport Folk Festival and was the winner in the Americana category in the 2010 Boston Music Awards.

Island musician Nina Violet is the opening act, and blues harpist Natalie Lurie will also perform. The show is produced by TPS Presents.

David Wax Museum, Thursday, August 14, 9:30 pm, Flatbread Company, M.V. Airport, Edgartown. 21+. $25; $18 in advance at ticketsmv.com. For more information, visit flatbreadcompany.com.

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The Workout & Vineyard Tennis Center (VTC) in Edgartown recently replaced the lighting at its two year-round indoor tennis courts with energy efficient fluorescent fixtures. Not only are the courts bathed in brighter, whiter light, but the upgrade will also reduce the center’s energy costs by over $5,000 a year.

The old lights used 23,000 watts to light the two courts. The new lights need only 11,450 watts.

The lights and the installation cost $29,900. Program incentives of $23,970 from the Cape Light Compact (CLC), a public electricity aggregator and advocate for energy efficiency, reduced that cost to about $5,930. CLC subsidizes energy saving projects with funds generated by the energy conservation charge that is a part of electrical bills in Massachusetts.

The new lights were installed last month and replaced metal halide bulbs and fixtures that were state of the art when they were installed almost 20 years ago, VTC owner Connie McHugh said.

Playing tennis on Martha’s Vineyard during the cold, dark months of winter or during the stormy days of summer became a comfortable possibility when Ken Martin and Connie McHugh opened The Vineyard Tennis Center with two indoor courts in 1996.

“The old lights were better and brighter than most of the indoor courts on the Cape and were as bright as any tennis court lighting I had seen,” Ms. McHugh said. But they came with a cost. Ms. McHugh said that the tennis center’s monthly electrical bill averages over $3,000 and a big chunk of the bill is the cost of running the lights.

Ms. McHugh expects the savings from the new lights will cover her out-of-pocket costs within a year and a half. “It was a no-brainer,” she said. “Not only will we save money in the long run but the new lights are brighter and whiter and easier to use, and the bulbs last longer and we can turn them on and off whenever we want.”

She said the light from the old metal halide lights would turn yellowish as the lights aged giving the courts a dingy look and the lights often had to be left on, an additional cost, even when no one was playing because it took five to 10 minutes for the lights to reach their full intensity when turned on.

When the old lights were shut off it took about 15 minutes for the lights to cool down before they could be turned on again.

“When the power went down, not an uncommon occurrence on the Vineyard, there was nothing we could do but wait,” Ms. McHugh said. “Now we can turn them on and off whenever we want and the new lights reach full brightness within a minute.” Another advantage of the new lights is that they do not need the heat and noise generating ballasts that covered a large section of one wall that the old lights required.

The old light bulbs had to be replaced every 18 months to two years. She expects the new bulbs to last between four and five years.

Energy audit

The idea for new lights resulted from a no-cost commercial energy audit conducted by CLC, similar to audits offered to all NSTAR customers. Information on audits is on the CLC website www.capelightcompact.org. The audit pointed to the replacement of the old metal halide lights as a way of conserving a significant amount of energy, according to CLC program coordinator Briana Kane.

Ms. Kane said the project qualified for a CLC retrofit program that is designed for commercial and industrial customers to help replace aging, inefficient equipment and systems with energy efficient technologies.

The retrofit program provides customers with incentives and technical services that facilitate the installation of premium efficient equipment, including refrigeration, motors, air conditioning and water heating systems and almost anything that uses electricity. Ms. Kane said the cost of the audit was also covered by the energy conservation charge. She said audits, energy-efficiency programs and services, rebates and incentives are ways the conservation charge is returned to the customer.

Brighter courts?

Whether the new lights are any better than the old lights will ultimately be determined by the players, Ms. McHugh said. “I think they are better and tests conducted at other tennis facilities off-Island that have switched to the new lights indicate that these lights are brighter.”

Ms. McHugh said that Michael Anderson, the vice president for sales at Think Lite, an international lighting efficiency company with headquarters in Natick that designed the new lights, conducted tests last week and suggested that some fine-tuning could improve the court illumination even more. “We are somewhat of a test case for them and they are interested in making it right,” Ms. McHugh said. “He recommended increasing the wattage of some of the fixtures with brighter bulbs and repositioning some of the fixtures.” She said that the tune-up work will be done in September at no additional cost.

VTC employee and tennis player Steve Mussell said that he thinks the new lights are brighter and whiter. “They are more like natural sunlight,” he said.

Twelve-year-old tennis player Hannah Rabasca said she likes the new lights as she walked off a court with her doubles partner, her grandfather, Peter Norris. Ms. Rabasca will be 17 when the new bulbs need to be replaced.

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The special election will fill the post left vacant by the murder of Pat Gregory.

West Tisbury selectmen are mulling the future use of the town's former police station. — File photo by Michael Cummo

West Tisbury selectmen voted unanimously at their weekly meeting on July 30 to choose a new town moderator at a special election held in conjunction with state and federal elections on November 4. Voters will be asked to choose a replacement for longtime moderator Francis “Pat” Gregory, who was murdered while hiking in northern California in May.

Mr. Gregory was found dead of a gunshot wound on May 16 on the Iron Canyon Trail off Highway 36E, north of Red Bluff, Calif. A companion who was hiking with him was wounded. They were robbed before being shot. Police continue to search for the murderer.

In other action Wednesday, selectmen discussed the use of the old police station building next to the Mill Pond, vacated when police moved into their new station on State Road this spring.

The 1,000-square-foot building is on a small lot and comes with a parking restriction of three vehicles. The lot is so small and so close to the Mill Pond that the septic system was sited on a neighboring residential lot owned by Peter and Beatrice Nessen with the condition that the lot would only be used for the police station.

Selectman Richard Knabel said that any change of use could invalidate the terms of the septic agreement and would give the Nessens the option of disconnecting the system. Chairman Jeffrey “Skipper” Manter said the Nessens have indicated that they would be willing to consider new tenants for the building.

Last month, a committee appointed by the selectmen to study the building’s use recommended that the building be leased to a nonprofit group but was not more specific.

Town administrator Jennifer Rand said that in order to meet state guidelines for the rental of municipal property at less than the best price, a request for proposals (RFP) would would have to identify specific public benefits as determined by the selectmen.

“The state is quite clear that if it is to be disposed of, and a lease is considered disposed of, for less than fair market value, a valid public purpose must be defined,” Ms. Rand said. “The primary purpose must be to promote the public welfare with a fair and open disposition.”

She said the board would have to determine what their goals are. She said that she will keep the Nessens informed of the town’s decisions.

Mr. Manter asked that the issue be put on the agenda for the next selectmen’s meeting, on August 6.

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From left: Cindy Kallet, Ellen Epstein, and Michael Cicone, scheduled to perform at the Fern and Feather concert on August 3. — Alison Shaw Photography

Headlined by songwriter, singer, and guitarist Cindy Kallet, four accomplished folk musicians will perform together to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Fern and Feather Day Camp at Felix Neck, a Massachusetts Audubon Society wildlife sanctuary in Edgartown.

The show, at the Grange Hall in West Tisbury this Sunday, August 3, will raise money to support an Island family scholarship program for Fern and Feather, a natural history day camp. Ms. Kallet is a former volunteer and employee of Felix Neck.

As a songwriter, teacher, singer, and guitarist with five solo albums to her credit, Ms. Kallet has performed extensively throughout North America in coffeehouses, concert halls, house concerts, and music camps. She has appeared on A Prairie Home Companion and WFMT’s Folkstage.

Her first album, Working on Wings to Fly, was voted one of the “Top 100 Folk Albums of the Century” by WUMB Boston radio listeners, and Ms. Kallet’s Leave the Cake in the Mailbox – Songs for Parents and Kids Growing Up was chosen for a 2004 Parents’ Choice Gold Award.

She has recorded three trio albums, with Ellen Epstein and Michael Cicone, who will join her for the first part of the concert.

For the past nine years Ms. Kallet has joined musical forces with Grey Larsen, who will join her for the second part of the show. They have recorded two albums together and many of the songs they perform were composed by the duo.

Mr. Larsen is noted for his fluency on the Irish Flute and tin whistle. He is also highly accomplished on the concertina, harmonium, and fiddle and is the author of books on Irish music and has more than a dozen CDs to his credit. Since 1989, he has been the music editor of Sing Out! Magazine and has devoted himself to the traditional fiddle music of his native Midwest and Appalachia since the 1970s.

Ms. Kallet has had a long relationship with Felix Neck and is proud of what she learned from former director Gus Ben David. “I started volunteering at Felix Neck as a teenager in the early 1970s,” Ms. Kallet told The Times, “and fell completely in love with that piece of the Island, and with what the Sanctuary meant to the preservation of land and habitat on the Vineyard. I learned so much from Mr. Ben David, who is and was one of the great teachers of this world.”

Ms. Kallet eventually joined the staff as a teacher/naturalist, trail clearer, window washer, floor sweeper, and as a counselor at Fern and Feather before moving to Maine, where she lived for 18 years.

Ms. Kallet and Mr. Larsen now live and work out of Bloomington, Ind.

Folk Singer Cindy Kallet and friends, Sunday, August 3, 7:30 pm, Grange Hall, West Tisbury. $25 in advance; $20 for Mass Audubon members; $30 at the door. For more information, visit massaudubon.org/fern-feather-fifty or call Felix Neck at 508-627-4850.

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— Mae Deary

West Tisbury selectmen last week discussed the shortage of maintenance and custodial help necessary to maintain town buildings caused by the additional needs of the new library, the new police station and the town hall.

“The library maintenance needs seem to be the most substantial, particularly related to the composting toilets,” town administrator Jennifer Rand told selectmen at the July 23 meeting.

The toilets must be raked, and wood chips added monthly, library director Beth Kramer told The Times, a job that she has taken on but would like to shed. Ms. Kramer said that the real issue is the increased complexity of all of the new systems at the recently expanded facility. “It’s the same issue we have with the new police station and at the town hall,” she said. “Our contract with the cleaning service does not meet our needs.” She did say that she thought the cleaning service is doing a fine job.

Ms. Rand told selectmen Wednesday night that the town has tried to fill the position of facilities manager more than once and that the latest plan is to have Joe Tierney take on the responsibility of managing the facilities when he becomes the building inspector. “But to take this on did not mean, necessarily, dealing with composting toilets,” she said.

She said that she thought the facilities manager should be responsible for keeping up with the systems’ needs of the buildings, including maintenance schedules and agreements.

“The library’s needs are fairly extensive and I am not sure how we are going to go about it,” Ms. Rand said. “They have some systems that are fairly complicated and will need attention.”

In particular, the toilets must be maintained.

“I truly believe at the top of this list and probably what started all this is the composting toilet issue,” Ms. Rand said. “Because they put them in without a clear picture of how they were going to maintain them and now somebody needs to deal with them and apparently it’s not a great job and it is a hard job and who’s going to do it?”

Ms. Rand said that the town under-estimated the time that cleaning the new buildings require. She said that Ms. Kramer is requesting a full-time custodian.

Ms. Rand added that she thought the town hall is in a similar situation with general cleaning and maintenance and toilets. She said town hall is never clean enough and that the cleaners hired by the town are limited by the amount of time the town has contracted them for.

“It’s a real issue for these heavy use buildings,” she said. “The town is understaffed for this sort of thing.” She said that she has had to call in outside help to clear stopped up toilets in the town hall on several occasions.

Selectman Jeffrey “Skipper” Manter suggested looking at an estimate of the costs and seeing if the necessary funds have may already be in the 2015 budget or if money will need to be taken from a reserve fund transfer. Both selectmen Richard Knabel and Cynthia Mitchell agreed with Mr. Manter that a more thorough study should be made of the needs and that adjustments may have to be made to the 2016 budget to cover the increased needs of the town, including the possibility of a adding a new full-time position to the town payroll.

In fiscal year 2014, which ended June 30, West Tisbury paid cleaning contractors $35,400 for regular cleaning services for the town hall, fire department, police department, and the library. The new police department and library were only occupied in the last three months of the last fiscal year.

“We estimate that in FY 2015, with the new library and police station in use for the full year, that the expense will probably increase to a little over $50,000,” town accountant Bruce Stone told The Times in a telephone call Wednesday.

In other business last week, selectmen voted unanimously to approve a new banking agreement with the Edgartown National Bank that will cost the town about $7,400, $2,400 more than last year. The new agreement covers the current 2015 fiscal year, which began July 1. The charges will be paid from funds added to the tax collector’s budget from a reserve fund transfer.

Town treasurer Kathy Logue presented the new agreement that includes a new $200 per month fee. She explained that the bank’s fees cover general checking services and include lockbox services, primarily the receipt and processing of tax payments for the town.

Ms. Logue said the town’s banking costs in the previous agreement were met by charges to interest earned on a minimum balance of town funds kept in an account with the bank. These charges to the earned interest are also a part of the new agreement, but with prevailing interest rates so low the bank’s payments were not covering the costs of the services provided, she told selectmen.

“The bank said that the new fees will still not cover the entire cost of the services provided by the bank until interest rates increase, if they ever do,” she said. The monthly payments in the new agreement will increase to $400 the second year and $600 the third.

“This gives us the incentive to look into other ways to do things that may save money,” Ms. Logue said. She told The Times that West Tisbury has begun looking into accepting tax payments by credit card, as the state of Massachusetts and the federal government do, which may reduce processing costs. “We are working on it, hopefully within the year,” she said.

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Amy Goodman, award-winning journalist and host of Democracy Now!, will speak at the Katharine Cornell Theatre on Saturday. — Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Comm

This Saturday, July 26, join Amy Goodman and Charlayne Hunter-Gault at the Katharine Cornell Theatre in Vineyard Haven at a benefit for the WVVY 93.7-FM, the Island’s community radio station, and public broadcasting’s Democracy Now! The event is co-sponsored by Martha’s Vineyard Community Television, Channel 13, and the ACLU of Massachusetts.

Ms. Hunter-Gault, a Vineyard summer resident and renowned author and journalist will introduce Ms. Goodman, the award-winning host of Democracy Now! The largest public media collaboration in the United States, the pioneering show is broadcast on Pacifica, NPR, on public access, PBS, and satellite television, among other outlets including the Internet.

According to its website, Democracy Now!’s War and Peace Report provides access to people and perspectives rarely heard in the U.S. corporate-sponsored media, including independent and international journalists, ordinary people from around the world who are directly affected by U.S. foreign policy, grassroots leaders and peace activists, artists, academics and independent analysts. It hosts real debates between people who substantially disagree, such as between the White House or the Pentagon spokespeople on the one hand, and grassroots activists on the other.

Ms. Goodman will sign copies of the book, “The Silenced Majority: Stories of Uprisings, Occupations, Resistance, and Hope,” which she co-wrote with Denis Moynihan, with a foreword by Michael Moore.

WVVY 93.7 is a community station on Martha’s Vineyard that began its low wattage broadcasts in 2007. It boasts an eclectic collection of shows featuring music and commentary, most produced by locals. An interview with Ms. Goodman by West Tisbury resident Rob Myers will be broadcast on WVVY daily at 8:05 am, 11:05 am, 4:05 pm, 8:05 pm, and 11:05 pm leading up to the event.

Amy Goodman and Charlayne Hunter-Gault Benefit for WVVY and Democracy Now! Saturday, July 26, 7 pm, Katharine Cornell Theatre, Vineyard Haven. $10, tickets available at Bunch of Grapes Bookstore in Vineyard Haven, online at democracynow.org, and at the door.

There is a special pre-event catered reception from 5 to 6:30 pm, on the same day, with Ms. Goodman and Ms. Hunter-Gault at the Beach Plum Inn in Chilmark. Tickets to the reception are $75 and include entry to the lecture.