Squibnocket bridge foes strike out at zoning board

Chilmark committee says project didn’t require building permit.

The Squibnocket bridge project continues to move along even as the legal challenges continue. - Stacey Rupolo

The Chilmark zoning board of appeals Wednesday night denied an appeal by opponents of construction of a bridge-like structure at Squibnocket Pond to issue a cease and desist order for the ongoing construction of a 380-foot span to provide access to Squibnocket Farms, and to return the project to the town permitting process.

The board of appeals decision Wednesday night cited a state Land Court decision allowing the project, but both Doug Liman, a plaintiff in the long-running controversy, and attorney Daniel Larkosh, representing Mr. Liman and David Stork, disagreed, and promised further legal action in the state court system.

At issue is whether the project required a building permit. The town building inspector, Lenny Jason, says that the town is not in the business of permitting bridges, a contention with which Mr. Liman and Mr. Stork disagree.

The zoning board cited a decision by the state Land Court, which upheld its position. Mr. Larkosh said his reading of the Land Court decision gave aggrieved parties the right to pursue legal remedy.

At one point during the 40-minute discussion, town attorney Ron Rappaport told the plaintiffs that their appeal was “frivolous,” and indicated that their claims opened them up to legal

damages to the town in a lawsuit as a result.

“What’s in front of this board [tonight] is an appeal that’s been adjudicated by the state Land Court. If you choose to go somewhere else, go ahead and good luck, but you are done with Lenny Jason and the zoning board of appeals,” Mr. Rappaport said to Mr. Liman and Mr. Stork.

Following the discussion, Mr. Liman and Mr. Larkosh told The Times they would continue to seek legal redress.