Home Soundings


If everybody did

After they’ve greeted us at the front desk, many savvy patrons of the Edgartown Library head straight for the shelves we keep stocked with books, videos, and music disks newly added to the collection....

Headway mode for Vineyard Transit Authority

What it means for riders on the Island’s most important commuter corridor is that the new service might not be as precisely predictable as before, but you should never have to wait more than seven or eight minutes for a bus.

Come again

I was diagnosed with mild high-frequency hearing loss as a child, probably related to early ear infections and fevers. I remember a specialist telling my parents, “He’ll be fine, but he should stay away...

Mutual aid: Martha’s Vineyard fire departments work together

When Peter and Nancy Shemeth were wed in 1975, he married not just into a family but also into an important piece of Edgartown’s civic life. Nancy’s father, Alfred Doyle, was fire chief. So...

Three percent solution

In 2011, with an Edgartown Library building project on the town meeting warrant, I was hired to help prepare an informational brochure for voters. For the back cover, I asked several town leaders for...

Stop and think

All across the country, this shifting of costs from the private to the public sector is the Wal-Mart way.

This season of giving

Let's try to connect the dots between a new book on public health policy, a promising new program at Martha's Vineyard Hospital, and some numbers from a century-old Edgartown annual town report. First, the book....

Obesity and infrastructure

Peg Regan's efforts to advance local adoption of Complete Streets bylaws were not well received in town halls across the Island, which is too bad.

Oil versus wind

Tax subsidies are a wildly popular way for Congress to dish out money, because they have an indirect, backdoor quality.

Thank you, and goodbye

The bright idea in economic circles, for more than half a century, has been to build up the Island's shoulder seasons.

Change for the better

August on the Vineyard is the peak season for the vehicular misery we endure for two months because relieving it involves a trade-off we're unwilling to make: changes to the Island road system that would damage the rural character of this place all year.

Housing gap

Each July and August, the Island's leading nonprofits pack the calendar with the fundraising events that will make or break their budgets for another year.

Cultivating farmland

One of the Island's great seasonal traditions, the West Tisbury Farmers' Market, opens for its 39th year this Saturday morning, June 8.

The unkindest cut

There's been a lot of noise lately about how the federal budget sequestration has created backups at airports across the nation.

The high cost of cheap

West Tisbury just went through a $1.

Regional taxes and the MVC

Computing the rate would be easy enough.

Housing affordability is only one of the Island’s issues

Lately, the Martha's Vineyard Housing Needs Assessment Study Committee — don't worry, there's no acronym quiz later — has been batting around an early draft of the preliminary report prepared by their consultant, Karen Sonnarborg.

Maples, monocultures, and arboreal courage

West Tisbury has had a spirited conversation this fall about the trees around the parking lot between the Howes House, the Field Gallery and the new public library.

The art of regionalism

Being called to a marathon government meeting of representatives from the six Island towns might sound like a fitting punishment for something you did that wasn't terribly nice.

Scalable solution

Consultant Karen Sunnarborg is at work now preparing an Island housing needs assessment, a much-needed update to the reports prepared in 2001 and 2005 for the Martha's Vineyard Commission.