Chilmark selectmen breeze through meeting
In light of recent disputes regarding Menemsha Harbor, when Jim Zisson entered the Chilmark selectmen's meeting Tuesday evening wearing a T-shirt that read, "Menemsha is an American harbor and it's for everyone," it looked as if sparks might fly. But shortly after the meeting began, Mr. Zisson, a fierce critic of new Menemsha harbor rules and of selectman J. B. Riggs Parker, left without incident, and the remainder of the brief meeting was devoted to ordinary business.
The selectmen agreed to buy three 911 emergency call boxes, one for the harbormaster's station and another for Squibnocket Beach. The third location is undecided.
The selectmen also agreed to work with the Aquinnah selectmen on a distributed antenna system to serve cell phone providers who want to improve service, which is limited up-Island. The distributed antenna system uses fiber optic cables and antennas mounted on telephone poles in certain locations, called nodes. The system permits four to five carriers, so it would host all of the major cell phone service providers. Selectman Frank Fenner agreed to lead the project, and Mr. Parker, chairman of the selectmen, suggested they allocate between $4,000 and $5,000 for the examination of the project.
Selectman Warren Doty reviewed progress made on the Middle Line Road Affordable Housing project, which must be rebid. An agreement on the language of the request for proposals is the first step in a new effort to get the development underway. Multiple questions about conflict of interest, availability of funds, and limits on tenants or purchasers of the 12 planned dwellings derailed an earlier effort to build the housing.
"We want to make some statements about what kinds of houses the resident homesite will provide," Mr. Doty told his colleagues. "Basically we want a Cape Cod style house in keeping with the traditional architectural of the area."
Meanwhile, back at Menemsha Basin, the selectmen concluded the meeting with an agreement to offer the last slip on the concrete (fill) dock for a reduced price of $300 to people on the West Dock waiting list. The slip is smaller than the regular slips on West Dock and can accommodate only boats between 22 and 26 feet in length.