To the Editor:
According to the SSA email on May 7, “During its 1:15 p.m. trip from Vineyard Haven to Woods Hole today, one of the M/V Martha’s Vineyard’s generators briefly lost power … Both the SSA’s Port Engineer and representatives of the generator’s vendor were on board the vessel at the time and resolved the issue.”
The irony that the SSA had the generator’s vendor on board underscores the magnitude of this problem. The repeated ferry breakdowns of the past three months have created short and long term challenges.
This is our life line and it’s broken. As the owners of a small family owned inn we have been adversely affected in more ways than just loss of immediate nightly room inn income from guests who cancel because they received an SSA email regarding a breakdown. The vendors we work with are reluctant to make a plan to bring things or service equipment. Summer guests with reservations are calling to ask about future ferries. Part of the Vineyard’s appeal is the insularity but not the inaccessibility and insecurity about the ferry.
Apparently the appointed SSA governors and the SSA staff that the governors approved and hired have not been able to keep the SSA boats running.
As we understand it the SSA was established under Chapter 701 of the Acts of 1960,
“to provide adequate transportation of persons and necessaries of life for the islands of Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard.”
The SSA employs about 750 people during its summer peak season. It also receives federal dollars. Perhaps this is time for an investigation by the US. Dept of Transportation Inspector General or Attorney General Maura Healey.
It is apparently too big a problem for the appointed governors or local leaders to fix. We need to have our elected officials figure out what should be done next.
Susan and Sherm Goldstein, owners
Mansion House Inn
This letter was also sent to Senator Edward J. Markey,Senator Elizabeth A. Warren,Representative William R. Keating,Governor Charles D. Baker,Attorney General Maura Healey,Senator Julian Andre Cyr,Representative Dylan A. Fernandes,Dukes County Commission, Steamship Authority Member Marc N. Hanover