To the Editor:
It has been over 40 years since I last wrote a Letter to the Editor (that one was to the “Grapevine,” back in 1976). Last week’s comments by businessman Scott Mullin in a lengthy Gazette article concerning the sale of hard liquor in Tisbury have led me to write this letter.
In his remarks, Mr. Mullin complained, “Vineyard Haven fights everything … the Town should be stepping in to help us.” (By “us,” I assume he is referring to Main Street businesses in Vineyard Haven.)
He praised Oak Bluffs and Edgartown for sidewalk improvements and beautification projects, which we’d all agree do improve town commercial areas.
Unfortunately, I guess Mr. Mullin doesn’t remember that not too long ago the town of Tisbury financed a rebuild of the commercial part of Main Street.
A new sewer system, new water mains, underground conduit and vaults for future utility service, new curbing and sidewalks — many graded where possible for handicapped access and extending onto business property — were installed. All to help our business community.
As I read Mr. Mullin’s comments, I wondered if he knew that at the onset of that year’s tourist season (and at additional cost), the town shut down the project at the request of the Main Street business community.
I also wonder if Mr. Mullin knew that commercial property in Tisbury benefits from a lower tax rate.
Remember the Chowder Fest (which benefits the Red Stocking Fund)? It used to be held right here in Vineyard Haven — the business community let it go to Edgartown. How about the Tisbury Firefighters Auto Show? The business community let that one go as well.
Perhaps it’s time that more of the business community stop complaining and start doing.