Commission says yes to tower power

Oak Bluffs emergency communications tower is approved.

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Commissioners we’re happy with the plans for a proposed emergency communications tower in Oak Bluffs. - Brian Dowd

The good times kept rolling for Dukes County Sheriff Bob Ogden at a Martha’s Vineyard Commission (MVC) meeting that was faster than a hot knife through butter.

After receiving a $1.5 million grant to upgrade emergency communications, Ogden headed back to the MVC Thursday night to get approval for a 140-foot public safety communications tower in Oak Bluffs.

The tower will only be used for public safety communications and will be designed to meet the national code for class III structures for coastal areas. There may be lighting on the top of the tower, which will be decided by the Federal Aviation Administration. The tower will be maintained and operated by the Dukes County Sheriff’s Office.

The commission unanimously approved the tower. Commissioner Fred Hancock said the tower, which will be placed on the former Oak Bluffs landfill, was in the right location and “wouldn’t detract from the ambiance of the local area.”

In other business, the commission approved extension requests for the Lagoon Ridge subdivision and the Katama Airfield hangar.

Attorney Eric Peters requested a six-month extension to the Lagoon Ridge DRI due to the death of  Davio Danielson and a change in the subdivision by the Oak Bluffs planning board that required the addition of peripheral 50-foot buffer zones.

Last spring, the Katama Airfield Commission did not get Edgartown voter approval to fund its hangar reconstruction. Father Mike Nagle asked the commission to extend the project’s DRI for two years so as to have it ready for next year’s town meeting.

A public hearing for the Verizon tower in Vineyard Haven was put off until Nov. 15.

Commissioners will be holding a discussion with members of the Steamship Authority on Oct. 18 to discuss how the character and capacity of the Island is being affected by increased summer crowds.