Aquinnah, West Tisbury head to special town meeting

Aquinnah during the annual town meeting in May. —Dena Porter

Two up-Island towns, West Tisbury and Aquinnah, are getting ready for their upcoming special town meetings next week.

The West Tisbury Special Town Meeting will be held at the West Tisbury School on Tuesday, June 13, at 7 pm. The Aquinnah Special Town Meeting will be held at the Aquinnah Town Hall on Wednesday, June 14, at 7 pm. 

Residents of both towns will have several warrant article items to consider when it is time to vote. 


MVRHS budget

One warrant article that’s on voters’ minds is the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School (MVRHS) budget, which Aquinnah, Chilmark, and West Tisbury all rejected during their annual town meetings. The fiscal year 2024 budget achieved the four-out-of-six-town threshold needed to pass when it was passed Chilmark Special Town Meeting on Monday.

Both West Tisbury and Aquinnah voters will need to vote on whether to accept their shares of the budget, which are $3.4 million and $458,532 respectively. However, Aquinnah has a couple more considerations: two nonbinding resolutions for the athletic field. One petition asks for an “all-grass MVRHS campus with no plastic fields”; the other requests a commitment that no anonymous donations over $5,000 for “legal action, experts, project design, and permitting related to any and all plastic fields” could be used for the high school campus. 


West Tisbury

Other than the high school budget, West Tisbury has a very short warrant article, with two more items to consider. Both of these articles are requests to appropriate free cash, one for $13,250 to be put into the reserve fund, and the other for a $2,250 invoice to Araujo Brothers.

The town is offering free childcare at the West Tisbury School while the town meeting is taking place. However, preregistration is required. Call the library at 508-693-3366, or email, to register. 

The West Tisbury warrant is available on the town website. 



Aquinnah has a few more articles to consider during the special town meeting. 

Three of the remaining warrant articles not related to the high school budget are spending requests. These included $18,000 for grant consultant services, $6,060 to pay the town’s share of repairs and improvements to the Dukes County Health Care Access building, and $13,000 to increase the building inspector salary to $25,000. 

The other warrant article was a language amendment to the Fossil-Fuel-Free Demonstration, which will restrict and prohibit new buildings and substantial renovation projects from being powered by fossil fuels.

The Aquinnah warrant is available on the town website.