Paul O’Donnell sent a note to me about an invitation sent through the Chappaquiddick Island Association and Chappy Community Center email lists. He and a few other Chappaquiddickers have been looking into the idea of the Chappy Ferry being operated by a nonprofit organization. They are ready to present a proposal to the community to gauge support for this concept. In case you aren’t on either of the two email lists to which it was sent out, I want to share the information here.

On Saturday, Jan. 28, a general meeting will be held to discuss the formation of a tax-exempt, nonprofit corporation to purchase and operate the Chappy Ferry. The meeting will take place at 10 a.m. in person at the Chappaquiddick Community Center and over Zoom.

The Chappy Ferry Nonprofit Corporation (CFNC) will be represented pro bono by attorneys who are nonprofit specialists at the law firm of WilmerHale. CFNC would be run by a board of directors elected by the corporation membership — you, the ferry users. Chappy members would control the ferry and its operations. Revenues in excess of costs could be plowed back into ferry operations and capital improvements. All aspects of the ferry operation, including the need for rate increases or decreases, would be publicly available. As a corporation recognized as tax-exempt by the IRS, the CFNC would be able to apply for state and federal grant support.

You are invited to bring your ideas, concerns, experience and enthusiasm to the meeting. Please extend invitations to others who you think may be interested. For this nonprofit to succeed, we will need your commitment and effort. If possible, RSVP to The Zoom meeting link is

The concept of nonprofit ownership of the ferry service certainly seems worth investigating. Sally and I are both enthusiastic about selling to a nonprofit.

The Chappaquiddick Island Association email includes links to documents related to the possibility of forming a corporation. They can be accessed at and then use the search terms CFNC Ownership Model By Law.

A reminder: the next meeting of the Chappy Ferry steering committee is on Tuesday, Jan. 24 at 5:30 p.m. Find the Zoom link and the agenda on the Town of Edgartown website. The notice of the meeting may not appear until Friday afternoon.