The Nantucket Current is reporting that a project that includes two synthetic turf fields at Nantucket High School and Cyrus Peirce Middle School has been put on hold. Citing an email from the project’s landscape architect, the Current article cites the lack of support from town leaders for the project headed toward town meeting, and quotes a member of the Campus Wide Master Plan Committee saying it’s an opportunity to “take a deep breath” on a project that’s been “strained.”
Like the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School project, the Nantucket fields have come under scrutiny for the use of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in the manufacturing process for synthetic turf, and the potential for the contaminant to leach into groundwater.
Previously, Nantucket severed its contract with Dr. Laura Green, a consultant who has also provided testimony for the field project at MVRHS. Green’s comments about PFAS have been controversial, and caused the federal Environment Protection Agency, which she has done work for, to distance itself from those comments.
The MVRHS project is seeking a special permit from the Oak Bluffs planning board. Meanwhile, the Oak Bluffs board of health is considering draft regulations that would ban fields containing PFAS. Former health agent Meegan Lancaster resigned amid alleged threats that included shell casings being left in her tote bag.