SSA and the cost of living


To the Editor:

In the October 24 issue of The Times, we learned that the SSA is going to impose another increase in charges. [SSA board approves rate hikes in 2013 operating budget]. If the members of the SSA management lived on the Vineyard, they know that the cost of living is extremely high here. Why? Well, because we are on an Island and everything has to be brought here by the Steamship.

Instead of just adding on, why don’t they look at the overburden of employees needed to run the Steamship? The Coast Guard has stated that we have twice as many staff members on duty than is required. If you want a job, find a local politician and ask for a job with the SSA.

The next time that you go off-Island, look at the seven to 10 guys who direct you and your car onto the ferry. Do we really need seven to 10 people to direct the car traffic? Go get a cup of coffee, and they have eight people working in the menu part of the ferry.

That is why the cost of everything on the Island is so overpriced. Cut the staff by one quarter, eliminate the deficit, and you will not need to obtain a rate hike. There is a ferry to Block Island, and yet the prices on everything is not as high as we have on the Vineyard. Why? The ferry company there does not give a blank check to overload the staff, as is done with our SSA here in Massachusetts.

Harvey J. Kennedy Jr.

Oak Bluffs