Tisbury Takes Up Connector Road Again

The longstanding issue of whether to build a connector road will come before Tisbury voters again at a special town meeting next week, this time in three parts, but with the total price tag unknown. The meeting begins at 7 p.m. Tuesday.

Tisbury Lowers Residential Tax Exemption

Tisbury selectmen voted to set a tax rate of $8.46 for the coming year, slightly above last year’s rate of $8.01.

And after discussion at the public tax classification hearing Tuesday, a majority of the board agreed that the town should take steps to gradually shift away from the practice of allowing a residential tax exemption for year-round homeowners.

For this year the residential tax exemption will be lowered from 20 to 18 per cent.

Tax Changes Boost Tisbury Revenues

As the summer season comes to a close, revenue from two new taxes in Tisbury is helping to boost town finances.

Town administrator John (Jay) Grande presented summer totals from an occupancy tax increase and a new meals tax during the selectmen’s meeting Tuesday.

The occupancy tax increased from four to six per cent, leading to revenues of $95,309 for July and August. Last year during the same time period, revenues were $64,611.

The meals tax netted Tisbury $24,796, town treasurer Timothy McLean said in a phone conversation Wednesday.

Report Details Tisbury Building Woes

You could hardly accuse the drafters of the town of Tisbury’s Municipal Needs Assessment of understating the town’s planning problems.

“All the town’s major public buildings,” including the fire department, police and ambulance services, town hall and annex, says the first of the report’s findings, “are in a poor location and/or poor condition.”

Tisbury Taxes Rise Sharply

Tisbury property taxes will be sharply higher in 2011, largely due to falling property values and the extra expense of the town’s new emergency services building.

For fiscal year 2011, residential tax rates will go up 14.3 per cent compared with the current year. Commercial rates will go up 14.6 per cent.

And rates are unlikely to come down significantly for several years, an outlook which prompted selectmen to suggest the town would have to hold off on significant further infrastructure projects in the near future.

Connector Road Plan Aims to Solve Vineyard Haven Intersection Headache

While the proposed Oak Bluffs roundabout has received most of the press, Tisbury is quietly moving forward with another long-planned major traffic management infrastructure project: a proposed system of connector roads that would link Edgartown-Vineyard Haven Road to State Road and bypass the summer crush in Vineyard Haven. But unlike the roundabout, the state hasn’t been forthcoming with money for the proposed $3 million project. Now it’s up to voters to decide whether to build the connector system.

Tisbury Businesses Granted Reprieve In Tax Burden Shift

Seeking to help struggling Vineyard Haven businesses, selectmen voted unanimously on Monday to shift the town’s tax burden away from commercial property owners. But a sharp drop in taxes for businesses will mean a slight uptick for resident and non-resident homeowners alike.

The action, taken at a special meeting following a public hearing on the matter, was intended to give an encouraging economic signal to current Tisbury business owners and make the town more attractive for prospective new businesses.