Newspaper Archive of
Vineyard Gazette
Edgartown, Massachusetts
April 23, 2010     Vineyard Gazette
PAGE 6     (6 of 20 available)        PREVIOUS     NEXT      Full Size Image
PAGE 6     (6 of 20 available)        PREVIOUS     NEXT      Full Size Image
April 23, 2010

Newspaper Archive of Vineyard Gazette produced by SmallTownPapers, Inc.
Website © 2018. All content copyrighted. Copyright Information.     Terms Of Use.     Request Content Removal.

SIX VINEYARD GAZETTE, MARTHA'S VINEYARD, MASS. FRIDAY, APRIL 23, 2010 Pictures by Jesse Lindley FROM LEFT, BRUCE LEWELLYN, INCUMBENT TRISTAN ISRAEL, ANGELA CYWlNSKI. Two Challenge Tristan Israel's Seat By MIKE SECCOMBE Gazette Senior Writer Tisbury has three candidates for se- lectman on Tuesday's ballot. One is running on an understanding of man- agement, one on understanding of the town and one on an understanding of the job. Tristan Israel is the one who's pitching job experience. Like the bumper sticker says, decisions are made by those who turn up, and Mr. Israel has been turning up for 25 years, 17 of them as select- man. And not only selectman• He's also a county commissioner. He's on the joint wastewater committee with Oak Bluffs. He is the selectmen's appointee to the Island Housing Trust• He's on a couple of other committees, goes to meetings on average two or three nights a week, plus some in the daytime. If the total meeting hours of all the Island's elected officials were compared, he'd very prob- ably come out on top. And he's not at all tired of it. "I certainly gave it some thought, about whether I wanted to run again," he said this week. "But I still have the passion and the energy to put into the job. "It's something I choose to do. I'm self-employed, my own boss. I can work my schedule around it," he said. "I was raised in a family that believed in public service. The most important reason, I think, why we are here, is to help other people. There are many ways to help people. Some people volunteer at the hospital. This is my vehicle." He's running in pretty favorable circumstances. Tisbury just breezed through its annual town meeting in record time, with no signs of dissent among the citizenry, unless you consider the question of bee.r and wine sales. And there is no, difference among the candidates on that issue; all are in favor of it. The town managed to hold its budget to zero without significant cuts; two major infrastructure projects the new emergency services facility and the new connector road. are safely through ap- proval and ready to begin. "Tisbury is in sound financial shape and I'm proud of that. We have a good bond rating. We can borrow at low rates." Mr. Israel said. "I have always advocated fiscal con- servatism, but I consider myself a strong advocate of social services. Another part o(my agenda is advocacy for people for services for the handicapped, mental health issues, the elderly." He said he wanted particularly to stay to see through the construction of the new emergency services facility. But beyond that is the continuation of the infrastructure plan of which the new building was just the first phase. "We have to look first at what we do with the old fire station property, with a view to ultimately creating a new town hall. because now we are in two facili- ties. There are some big planning issues coming up. "Tisbury's government consists of many independent entities that need to work together in order to accomplish goals. I believe that I have demonstrated that I can work with those different enti- ties and have been successful in bringing them together to achieve some of those goals," he said. Bruce Lewellyn, the second candidate, makes a sharp contrast with Mr. Israel in background and approach to the job. He is a serf-described "recovering lawyer" from a large Connecticut firm, retired to the Vineyard after many years coming here seasonally, first by boat; He bought his home here 11 ears ago. And his approach to the job, should he win on Tuesday, could be summed up fairly simply, he said. "The more the town runs like a busi- ness, the better off we are. "I was 37 years a business lawyer. I was in a firm that at one time had as many as 75 lawyers. I advised businesses of all types from sole proprietors to New York Stock Exchange listed companies. I also represented banks and municipali- ties," he said. "I've conducted and participated in literally thousands of meetings, and have negotiated just about every kind of business and employment contract you might be able to think of." "I have a good deal of experience drafting pension plans and qualified plans, benefits, employment agreements, advising banks in that regard. Banks who were trustees of plans and offered IRAs and various such things. I was close to the investment aspect of that, and while I don't hold myself out as an investment adviser, I'm comfortable in the economic matters." Given that background, Mr. Lewellyn's two first involvements in civic life on the Vineyard were as a member of the isbury finance commit- tee B he is finisng three-year term __ and as a rhember of the All-Island school cottee's union negotiating subcommittee. He also has chaired the dredge com- mittee since its inception four years ago. "I've worked with the selectmen on various issues, most of them having some legal taint." he said• At a recent candidates' forum, Mr. Lewellyn raised the prospect of leasing or selling off some town property that was not immediately needed. Other issues he has nominated for his attention, should he win, is the need to bring a solution to the fractured nature of town government, with town employees scattered in different places. They should all be into a single location, he said. "It is not a wonderful time to think of increased expenditures, but one of the most propitious times to borrow in my lifetime," he said• Then there was the problem of un- funded town liabilities to former em- ployees. "The town needs to know every year that thing is still looming out there," he said. "The police department is another area where we need to address things. We're waiting and waiting for the report [into police operations], with an interim chief. We have no current contract with our force. "* "Those are things the town will have to deal with." The third contender for selectman is Angela Cywinski, who also is a candi- date for re-election as town assessor. She cites many of the same issues as Mr. Lewellyn, but her perspective is more bottom-up than top-down, more experiential than managerial. She's delivered mail on the Island, run a transport business, served two years on the finance committee and 12 years as assessor. Seen the way people five, close up. "I see people struggling. I see my town fading away. Businesses closing up on Main street. The bagel shop disappears in the middle of the night.Then another business leaves and another, and you' ask what's happening to the town," she said• She misses the day when Main street was a center of commerce and people all knew each other. She wants a more friendly town, in several senses. More welcoming to visitors, for one. "Oak Bluffs harbor was done right," she said. "Beautiful wharfs with power and a boardwalk. Shops• It's pleasant• A shower facility. All we have is Owen Park harbor and a 40-foot strip at Grove street. That's all the beach we have. That's it. And the Steamship Authority sends the "best" boats, the ones with lots of walk-off tourists, to Oak Bluffs in summer. "We don't have friendly parking ar- eas.The town needs to be more friendly, for people to want to come," she said. A yes vote for beer and wine would help, she said. But it needs more than that. One idea: remove the old firehouse, and use the site to run little markets. Street fairs there every weekend? There should be more special areas, more bike paths. "There's always a different way of doing things. You need a fresh pair of eyes. I've been an elected assessor for 12 years.Tristan's been selectman for 17 years. After awhile you get comfortable. Sometimes you need change in order to grow." Ironically, considering there was no inflation in the town budget this year, Ms. Cywinski said it was the budgetary and tax growth over recent years which first led her to run for the selectman's job. In office, she would see her first prior- ity as improving communications within town departments. "Everyone's not in one building, half of our town is being relocated in trailers behind the dog pound. The structure of government is fractured, which causes an independentness. Departments are sometimes little kingdoms. "It should be a single entity town government working for the people." "I understand public service. I don't get paid a real lot of money, but I under- stand serving the public." she said. "Sometimes it's rewarding and some- times it's frustrating." The Tisbury annual town election is Tuesday at the American Legion Hall. Polling hours are noon to 8p.m. Tisbury Voters to Decide Beer, Wine Question on From Page One question, as selectman Geoghan Coogan explained recently in a letter to this pa- per, are the result of state requirements. The town needed state approval to proceed with the ballot, and the state required numbers. "Senate counsel in- formed the town that it had two options. First,we could request a specific number of licenses. Second, we could request the number of licenses permitted by the so- called quota system under the general laws of the commonwealth," Mr. Coogan wrote. For a town with a year-round popula- tion the size of Tisbury's, the quota would have allowed 14 full licenses (that is all- alcohol) and five licenses for beer and wine only. "As a board, we believed that there were probably more than 14 potential year-round operations that would apply for a license if this ballot question were successful," Mr. Coogan said. "The number 19 was the number of restaurants we felt could possibly obtain a license, assuming all of the potential sites met all of the other guidelines for obtaining a license to operate a restau- rant and serve alcohol." So they preferred to go for 19, rather than face the problem of having to choose from the outset. As for seasonal licenses, the state does not set a quota. Mr. Coogan's letter, with its confirma- tion that the selectmen anticipated at least 14, and possibly as many as 19 ap- plications was the closest the board has come to suggesting how many licenses they ultimately will grant. Previously, at a March working meet- ing of the selectmen and interested par- ties to discuss the regulations, Mr. Coogan said the indications were that only seven or eight places would seek year-round Crucial Tuesday licenses. So the numbers that might ultimately be licensed remains uncertain. And so does the outcome of the vote. The one thing which does appear cer- tain about Tuesday's ballot, is that who- ever wins, a substantial minority is going to be unhappy with the outcome. A vote does not end a controversy, it decides a winner. And sometimes it does not even do that, as was demonstrated two years ago, whenqSsbury voters last went to the polls on the beer and wine question. The result was a tie: 690 all. In a re- count, they found two more no votes. But that vote did nothing to end the controversy. Those in favor of beer and wine sales promptly restarted the tortu- ous process of having beer and wine sales approved. And the debate, lobbying and letters, for and against, continued to flow unabated. Th'e beer and wine question is only one of six questions up for decision on Tuesday. The other four all relate to town spend- ing, which will slightly increase the tax rates of residents. Question two seeks to raise an ad- ditional $225,000 to fund a new contract with the Tisbury police. Question three proposes spending $120,000 on a new refuse truck; ques- tion four proposes spending $20,000 for a new road sander; question five seeks $20,000 for painting the senior center; question six seeks $75,000 to go toward a new generator for the school. Jesse Lindley LIKE SPRING FLOWERS, POLITICAL SIGNS BLOOM IN TISBURY. Chilmark Voters to Meet on Monday From Page One and our current bylaw doesn't provide for any of that," Mr. Goldman said. He also said since the Martha's Vineyard Commission created a moratorium on turbines over 150 feet when it adopted a wind energy DCPC earlier this year, there is extra rationale for Chilmark to adopt a moratorium on turbines under 150 feet. "I felt the town was at some measure of risk and since the MVC had declared a moratorium of over 150 feet, it would be appropriate for the town to declare a moratorium under 150, allowing to col- lect other information, as the commis- sion collects its information," he said. The town planning board hosted a public hearing on the proposed mora- torium but has taken no position on it. "That's what the town meeting will decide," Mr. Goldman said. The second of two articles on the special town meeting warrant would add language to the town zoning bylaw that allows affordable housing recipi- ents to pass their property on to their children with no regard to income. This has been a subject'for wide discussion as all Island towns become deeply in- volved in creating affordable housing• Covenants and ground leases ensure that the housing will remain afford- able in perpetuity, but the question of whether heirs must also meet income rules demonstrates the complicated nature of the affordable housing initia- tives on the Vineyard. And there are no easy answers, said town executive secretary Tim Carroll. "Mr. Parker and Mr. Fenner [town selectmen] are on opposite sides, the housing committee is split, we are talk- ing and talking about this, but no one really knows what the right thing is to do,'" he said'. Mr. Goldman said he takes an op- posite view but agreed that the article should come before voters. "We the town havegone to a great deal of trouble and money to create affordable homesites, not just for one generation but to be available for others to be used.We have debated it at length, and the time has come to decide the question: what does the town want to do?" he said. On the annual town meeting war- rant voters will be asked to decide a variety of spending articles for public safety, shellfish and affordable housing programs in town. including: • $35,000 to begin a savings program for replacing the town's 25-year-old fire truck; • $9,000 to replace the emergency notification siren on the town hall roof; • $27,000 for a new Ford four-by-four police cruiser: • $2,500 for an oyster reef build- ing project in Tisbury Great Pond and $10,000 for a new outboard for the shellfish department; • $30,000 to pay for a bond for three still unbuilt affordable housing rental duplexes at Middle Line Road. Community Preservation Act money to spend in the name of historic pres- ervation includes $30,000 to be put toward an ongoing stone wall restora- tion project. And like their counterparts in the five other towns, Chilmark voters will be asked to pay a share of four Is- landwide programs: County rental as- sistance ($55,000, from CPA funds); replacement of the 1860s Edgartown courthouse windows ($5,545, from CPA funds); county pest control; and county health care access program. Also as in other towns, Chilmark will be asked this year to create a town affordable housing trust that has pow- ers to receive and dispose of property without returning to the town meeting floor for approval. In Chilmark the plan comes with a special twist: the trust fund will be named for the late Molly Flender, a Chilmarker who led the effort for affordable housing in her town and beyond. Molly Flender died of cancer in 2005. And finally, voters will be asked to spend $4.000 to carry out the town cen- ter path enhancement plan, a people- friendly path system designed to allow safe walking among the various build- ings at Bettlebung Corner. including the town hall, post office, school, library and community center• The plan has been drawn by Dan Greenbaum. a Chilmark resident and retkel engineer whose specialty is traf- fic and transportation planning• "Dan came up with a very low-cost plan." Mr. Carroll said. He said the Greenbaum plan recognizes the obvi- ous: people will follow a certain natural route when they walk. "That's where the path should go, and the idea is to make it easy and safe. including a crosswalk that is a straight line from the post office to the Chil- mark Store. School kids walk there." Mr. Carroll said. He said the paths may include a few motion-sensitive night lights• "The finance committee did not want to see street lights," he said. "It's basically to improve the safety because we have so many people who walk around there," Mr. Greenbaum said from his home .yesterday• "Right now people wander around and the paths are pretty well set, so this is formalizing it. People do it anyway; we just want to make it a little safer and a little more organized•" he said. Learn Business Basics To help potential and existing entrepreneurs on the Vineyard, the South Eastern Economic Develop- ment (SEED) Corporation and Mar- tha's Vineyard Savings Bank will hold two free. basic business workshops at the Harbor View Hotel in Edgartown on Wednesday, April 14. Learn the Fundamentals in Plan- ning and Financing Your Business will be held from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. Registration begins at 8 a.m. Break- fast and lunch will be provided free of charge to attendees. This workshop helps potential entrepreneurs evaluate and under- stand the fundamentals of owning a business. Information on how to get started, where and how to get financing and the loan application process will be presented• Attendees will also be provided with a free guide to writing a business plan and other materials. The second workshop, Understand- ing the Purpose of Financial State- ments and How They Can Help De- termine the Health of Your Business, will be held from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. This should help attendees under- stand a balance sheet, income state- ment and cash flow statement. The workshop also explains how a small business owner can anticipate finan- cial needs in order to operate a busi- ness more efficiently. To register, call 508-822-1020• Pictures by Jesse Lindley JONATHAN MAYHEw AND BILL ROSSI SEEK SELECTMAN'S SEAT. Candidates in Chilmark Have Remarkably Similar Platforms Both are fixtures in town, each in his own way. And Chilmark voters will be asked to choose one of the two candi- dates for selectman when they go to the polls next Wednesday. Jonathan E. Mayhew is a lifelong resident and commercial fisherman who has served oa numerous town boards, including sdectmen, Martha's Vineyard Commission, planning board and Dukes County Airport Commis- sion. He is a familiar presence down on the Menemsha dccks with his boat, the Quitsa Strider II. Bill Rossi has lived in town since 1973 and is also a familiar face, having owaed Rossi Landscapes for 20 years before going on to manage the Chil- mark office of Wallace & Company real estate• He is also a fixture at the Chilmark Store, which he owned with his wife, Stephanie, from 2004 to 2007, and will return as owner this year after a three-year absence. Both are vying for the seat left va- cant by selectman J.B. Riggs Parker, who decided not to run for reelection this year after serving two terms. In separate interviews with the Gazette this week, Mr. Mayhew and Mr. Rossi revealed that they are not far apart on most of the major issues in town. And both carry a deep and abiding affection for Chilmark. For Mr. Mayhew, 58, it would be a return to the board after stepping down in 1994 after three terms. He decided notto run again that year to focus on his fishing career, and has since served as president of the Atlantic Fish Spot- ters and board member of the Dukes County Fishermen's Association, which advocates for sustalnfible tishenes on the Vineyard and around New Eng- land. : Since that time he also has been active in town government, serving on the planning board, the Martha's Vineyard Commissia and the airport commission. He has two grown chil- dren, Brooke and Matthew, from a first marriage, and two young children, Christopher, 11, and Marguerite (Mag- gie), 10, with his wife, Anne. Mr. Mayhew said he supports new guidelines for wind energy, and he believes the one-year moratorium pro- posed on the annual town meeting war- rant is the best way to accomplish that goal. He said voters should not view the moratorium as something to dissuade people from building new wind energy systems, but a chance for the town to get it right. "I support wind energy, but we need to do it right• I am interested in a two- pronged attack -- we should consider changes to allow residents to join to- gether to create community wind sys- tems, and als o promoting commercial wind turbines- as long as they are built in an appropriate location," he said. Mr. Mayhew opposes Cape Wind, because he believes it poses a threat to fishing and lobster grounds on Horse- shoe Shoal• He hopes state and local officials decide to seriously explore the possibility of locating wind farms in federal waters, beyond the three-mile limit. • " "We don't need these large turbines a few miles from our shores. If it was up to me they would be 12 miles out ... we should be considering all options right now," he said. He supports the Middle Line Road affordable.housing project, especially favoring the resident homesite part of the project, and remaining lukewarm about the rental part of the project. "I am a strong supporter of the youth lots and resident homesite programs, I always have been. I think it's the best way to give our yoffng people and families a chance to stay here in town. Considering how expensive it is to live on the Island and in Chilmark, we need to help our young families find afford- able housingopportunities," he said. And of course Mr. Mayhew strongly supports keeping Menemsha as a work- ing fishing, village. "We should kp the short season, and keep thiiags the way they are for the • most pat. I think we can balance the in- terests of commercial and recrefftional fishermen. For the most part [the com- mercial fishermen] go out early in the morning, and the [recreational] people go out later in the day. We can all co-exist, that includes tourists, beach- goers, everyone," he said, adding: "Granted it's a balancing act with all these different groups. But I don't think we should be making major changes. We want the [tourists] to come and spend their money, but we want to support the fishing industry. In its own way, fishing itself is a draw," he said. Mr. Rossi, 52, also takes a status quo approach to many issues. Community- service-minded, he decided to run for selectman after Mr. Parker announced he would not run for reelection."I don't think I would be comfortable running unless there was an open seat.., for the most part I think the town is being well run," he said. He describes himself as a fiscal con- servative. He would like to see more young people serve on town boards and committees, and he would like to assist the fire department recruit volun- teer firemen and address safety issues for the growing number of cyclists in town. "I'm not a hard-core cyclist. But I started riding more recently, and I learned quickly how dangerous it can be [for bikers]. We have some work to do finding a way for cyclists and motor- ists to share the roads," he said. Mr. Rossi and his wife have two children, Haley, 18, and Joseph, 14. He served on the town planning board from i986 to 1991, and was a member of the zoning board of appeals from 1996 until January of this year. For the last seven years he has been chairman. He too would like to see the zoning board craft new wind turbine regulations, "Remember, not everyone feels the same way about this, not everybody wants wind turbines all over the hori- zon. And in a small town like this, we need to be respectful and considerate of our neighbors," he said. And he supports the wind turbine moratoriu m question on the warrant. "It,s not a stance against wind power, quif'the 6ppositril' lie aid: : •  Mr. Rossi agrees that the town should be wary of making drastic changes in Menemsha. "Sure, it can be crowded down there in the summer. But we have one of the few truly public beaches on the Island that brings people into town, which is good for business. And we have an au- thentic fishing village that is a big asset to this town• I would not take the risk of making big changes down there," he said• His platform is simple: He will work to preserve the town's rural character and maritime heritage. "Look at where we live -- it's one of the greatest places in the world, and I want to keep it that way. That's a big reason I am running; because it's my home, and I love and enjoy it," he said. The Chilmark annual town election i Wednesday at the Community Center; polls are open from noon to 8p.m. Two Join Endowment Melissa Hackney and Edward Miller have been elected to the board of the Permanent Endowment for Martha's Vineyard, the Island's community foun- dation, which provides grants to non- profit organizations and scholarships for Vineyard students. Melissa Hackney, of West Tisbury, is an attorney at Reynolds, Rappaport, Kaplan and Hackney, concentrating in business law, including general corpo- rate law, partnerships, limited liability vehicles, nonprofit charitable organi- zations, and mergers and acquisitions.• Previously she worked for two Phila- delphia law firms, as a sole practitioner in Vineyard Haven, and as a freelance writer and assistant editor producing articles for Whittle Communications and Virgo Publishing• A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Syracuse Univer- sity and the University of Pennsylvania Law School, she also serves on the Boards of the West Tisbury Free Public Library, Vineyard Youth Tennis and the Vineyard Haven Tennis Foundation. A Vineyard resident since 2002, Ed- ward Miller has been coming to the Island since 1962 when he arrived for a summer job on a fishing boat. His 35-year career at Smith Barney began in 1968 with his most recent position • serving as the chief executive officer of Schroder Salomon Smith Barney. Mr. Miller is a graduate of the University of Philadelphia, the Wharton Gradu- ate School and the Harvard Graduate School of Design. He also serves on the board of trustees of the Martha's Vineyard Hospital and the advisory board of the Martha's Vineyard Film Festival. He lives in Chilmark with his wife, Monina yon Opel. For information about the fund see online or call 508-338-4665. ,:, , I ", ! t:,,,I: i;llJ00 ,; ![allilllmlnlml00iO00lltll00l00ii|llllllMIMIdl00,lgt00lllil00ll00I[00[ ' .....