West Tisbury grants what may be its first official mooring

West Tisbury selectmen have issued a mooring for Tisbury Great Pond. - Rich Saltzberg

West Tisbury selectmen, acting in their capacity as the town’s harbormasters, issued a seasonal mooring permit to Chilmark resident Perry Ambulos on Wednesday. It may be the first mooring permit the town has ever issued. Neither town administrator Jennifer Rand nor town clerk Tara Whiting recall a mooring permit being issued as long as they’re worked for West Tisbury government.

Ambulos told The Times Thursday he requested the permit not for himself but on behalf of the owners of an estate he manages. He declined to say who those people are.

Wednesday afternoon Ambulos told selectmen the mooring will serve a 14.5-foot sailboat somewhere in the Tisbury Great Pond near the boat ramp at Sepiessa Point.

On Thursday Ambulos said in lieu of a cement block, a 75- to 100-pound steel mushroom anchor will be employed, along with a white mooring ball.

Rand said at the meeting the Land Bank wasn’t inclined to weigh in on the mooring.

“This is not for us to decide,” she recalled their officials telling her. “It’s up to you as the harbormasters.”

Land Bank Superintendent Ian Peach told The Times his organization would make recommendations should any issues arise.

Selectman Kent Healy, who lives on the pond, asked why the boat couldn’t be trailered back and forth, and pointed out a mooring would present a navigation obstacle. “No question … that’s a mooring that will interfere with other people’s use of the pond,” he said.

Ambulos said it’s not a light boat, and it would be easier to leave it in the water rather than to trailer it. “If we say yes to one, we have to say yes to everyone,” selectman Skipper Manter said. Manter also owns property on the pond.

Healy said establishing mooring parameters might curtail too many folks asking for moorings.

Manter said creating guidelines was paramount, as the town has none for moorings.

The selectmen ultimately voted 2-0 to approve a mooring until Oct. 15. Chairman Cynthia Mitchell was absent from the meeting.

In the future, another mooring, if granted, must involve an as-yet-undrafted application.

Ambulos said Thursday the mooring will be set “hopefully within the next week or so.”