News in Brief
Two arrested in Oak Bluffs on drug trafficking charges
After a month long investigation by Island authorities, two individuals were arrested last week in Oak Bluffs on drug trafficking charges. Gregory Bray, 37, of Dorchester, and Laurel Maciel, 26, of Oak Bluffs were arrested Thursday at a house on Summit Avenue.
Oak Bluffs police in conjunction with the State Police and Martha's Vineyard Drug Task Force had been investigating the house for drug dealing activity, and on Thursday they conducted a search, according to a press release from the Oak Bluffs police.
During the search, officers found 26 individually packaged bags of crack cocaine, one gram of heroin, several prescription medications, $580 in cash, and drug related paraphernalia. The drugs had an estimated street value of $2,800, according to the press release.
Mr. Bray and Ms. Maciel were charged with trafficking crack cocaine, possession of heroin, and possession of several prescription drugs. Mr. Bray has an extensive criminal record. He was released from Suffolk County Jail in Boston in November, the release states.
The pair was arraigned the following day in the Edgartown District Court, where Ms. Maciel was released on bail, and Mr. Bray was committed to a drug treatment center at the Bridgewater State Hospital. A pre-trial conference is scheduled for March 23.
Tisbury selectmen catch up on town projects
The Tisbury selectmen reviewed several town committees' activities and projects at a meeting Tuesday.
Dredge committee member Ralph Packer reported that the committee has prepared a request for proposals (RFP) for an engineering feasibility study on dredging and improving the channel at the entrance to Lake Tashmoo. The study will be funded by a $50,000 grant from the governor's Seaport Advisory Council, obtained through the efforts of Tisbury harbormaster Jay Wilbur, with assistance from dredge committee member Lynne Fraker.
Community Preservation Committee (CPC) chairman Bob Wheeler explained the process for allocation of Community Preservation Act funds. Mr. Wheeler said the CPC's spending recommendations will be addressed as separate warrant articles at the annual town meeting.
After voters authorized the selectmen to dispose of the fire department's 1982 pumper truck at special town meeting last week, fire chief John Schilling said the Chilmark Fire Department asked about acquiring the truck for use as a utility vehicle. Although Mr. Bugbee thought the truck might be worth $3,000 to $5,000, judging by prices on eBay, the selectmen agreed with Mr. Schilling that it would be more appropriate to pass the truck on to another fire department that could use it, especially one that has worked closely with Tisbury's. The selectmen voted to sell the truck to Chilmark for one dollar.
In the town administrator's report, Mr. Bugbee announced that Campbell Construction Group, based in Beverly, submitted a bid for $25,000 to perform emergency repairs to stabilize the Tashmoo Spring Building. The selectmen voted to award the company the contract.
In a matter that may affect the spring annual meeting warrant, the town has written the Martha's Vineyard Regional School District committee in support of the Island's current regional school assessment formula rather than the state's new wealth-based formula. Selectman chair Tristan Israel, joined by colleagues Tom Pachico and Denys Wortman, also wrote to Gov. Deval Patrick to protest the wealth-based formula.
The selectmen agreed that if Tisbury does have to pay according to the wealth-based formula, another $200,000 may be demanded of the town. The selectmen are considering adding that sum to FY 2008 spending, in an override article on the annual town meeting warrant.
Land Bank deal will protect 55 acres along
Old Courthouse Road
The Martha's Vineyard Land Bank commission announced this week that it had signed a contract to conserve about 55 acres along the Old Courthouse Road in West Tisbury. The seller is Harriet Hickie, and the price is $2,250,000.
According to a press statement prepared by the Land Bank, none of the land will be conveyed in fee-simple; Mrs. Hickie is selling a conservation restriction and will retain the underlying ownership of the property. It abuts a 20-acre field owned by the family and similarly conserved via a permanent agricultural restriction purchased by the Land Bank, town and state in 1989. That restriction also covers an abutting 17-acre field not owned by the Hickie family.
Prior to conveyance, the family will subdivide three lots along the Old County Road from the balance of the property to be conserved. West Tisbury's Old Courthouse Road, an ancient way, runs along the spine of the property. In addition, the family will convey trail easements connecting the Pine Hill Road and the State Road.
Edgartown School principal to be named in March
The three finalists for the principal's job at Edgartown School concluded their daylong visits to the school last week. Superintendent of public school James Weiss said he will announce his choice at the Edgartown School Committee's meeting on March 14, at 7 pm in the school's community room.
The finalists - Elana Aitken, Carlin Hart, and Lisa Sheffield - each spent a day at Edgartown School where they met with the students, faculty, school committee and community members. Mr. Weiss said he received "tons and tons of input" from survey forms asking for comments about the candidates, which will be helpful in his decision-making process.
Mr. Weiss appointed assistant principal Anne Fligor as the interim principal for the remainder of the school year, after principal Paul Dulac unexpectedly left last month to become superintendent of Marblehead Public Schools. The new principal will assume his or her duties no later than July 1, 2007.
Creative Living Award nominees invited
The Permanent Endowment Fund for Martha's Vineyard is currently accepting nominations for candidates to receive the Creative Living Award for 2007. This annual award is available due to the generosity the Ruth J. Bogan Memorial Fund, which was established in 1983 by Ruth Redding, to honor and remember her friend, Ruth J. Bogan, "who loved the Vineyard, and believed 'anyone can do anything.'"
The Creative Living Award honors persons whose lives reflect the "luminous and creative" spirit that marked Ms. Bogan's versatility in photography, painting, sculpture, jewelry, cooking, gardening, and in encouraging fine craftsmanship, creativity, and ingenuity in others. Nominees should reflect these qualities within their lives every day and should promote these qualities to the Vineyard Community. Physician, artist, and writer Russell Hoxsie was the recipient in 2006. Previous recipients also include Hospice of Martha's Vineyard, Allen Whiting, and David and Rosalee McCullough.
The deadline for nominations is March 31. Letters of nomination, detailing how each candidate represents the spirit of this award, should be forwarded to the Permanent Endowment Fund for Martha's Vineyard/ Creative Living Award Nominations, Box 1774, Edgartown MA 02539 or e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. The 2007 recipient will be announced in April; the date and location of the award ceremony to be announced.
Theodore S. Stafford
Theodore "Teddy" Scott Stafford, 22, died in an accident on Feb. 25, in Ypsilanti, Mich. He is survived by his mother, Joanne Scott, and her partner Lisa Fraiberg; his father, Robert E. Stafford, and his wife Patience Samson; a brother, Ben Stafford; and a sister, Tabor Stafford.
A service in honor of Teddy's life will be held on Sunday, March 4, at 11:30 am, at the Ag Hall, Panhandle Road, West Tisbury.
In a story about music therapists who led a sing-along for residents at Windemere Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, published in the Community section of the Feb. 21 edition, Karen Wacks, a professor of music therapy at Berklee College of Music in Boston, was mistakenly identified in a photo caption as Antonia Navarro. Ms. Navarro, a certified music therapist and Berklee graduate, presented the session with Ms. Wacks, but did not appear in the photo.