Oak Bluffs sets date for special town meeting

Green community status and new park and ride expected on warrant.

Oak Bluffs will hold its special town meeting at the Oak Bluffs School in November. — Lexi Pline

Oak Bluffs selectmen set Saturday, Nov. 14, as the date for a special town meeting. Selectmen did not set a time for the Saturday meeting, which will be held at the Oak Bluffs School. 

The town meeting logistics team settled on the Oak Bluffs School as the location for its large inside area. The choice to hold the meeting on a weekend day was recommended by the town’s logistics team. The town meeting was slated for a Tuesday, but according to town administrator Robert Whritenour, the logistics team felt it would be safer for a team to sanitize the Oak Bluffs gymnasium and cafeteria on a Saturday night after the meeting, and let the building air out for a day before children returned to school on Monday.

Several articles on the annual town meeting warrant in the spring were taken off to comply with Gov. Charlie Baker’s request that town meetings be slimmed down. Those articles will be voted on at the special town meeting.

Selectman Brian Packish said it was especially important to hold a town meeting since articles that were set for the annual town meeting would finally be voted on.

Oak Bluffs is on its way to becoming a Green Community, but it needs voter approval first. 

Green Community status provides a roadmap and financial support to municipalities that cut energy use by 20 percent over five years, and meet four other criteria. One of those criteria is for the town to adopt the Massachusetts building stretch code for energy efficiency. Buildings constructed to the stretch code use significantly less energy than buildings constructed under other codes.

Another important article is for $510,000 to construct a 50-space park and ride lot on town land on the corner of County Road and Pennsylvania Avenue. The project would be funded by a debt exclusion.

In other business, selectmen appointed Donalexander Goss and Barbara Alleyne to the Community Preservation commission, Herb Kiehn to the Vineyard Health Care Access Program, Antone Lima as the parks commission representative on the Community Preservation commission, and Amy Billings as the parks commission representative to the harbor advisory committee and the Copeland plan review committee.