Offshore wind development off the Vineyard coast could prove to be a windfall for the town of Aquinnah.

Town officials said Tuesday that the town stands to gain hundreds of thousands of dollars from offshore wind energy developers that  are required to mitigate the effects of offshore wind farms on Aquinnah Circle and Gay Head Light.

As developers seek to build hundreds of turbines in an 800,000-acre area starting about 12 miles south of the Island, they need to offset any of the negative impacts from the projects on designated historic sites under the National Historic Preservation Act. The town is currently negotiating funds for the cliffs and the lighthouse, two historic sites that stand to have turbines enter into their scenic views.

The Aquinnah select board voted this week to name the lighthouse park after Len Butler, pictured here. Mr. Butler died earlier this month. — Mark Alan Lovewell

So far, Vineyard Wind, a 62-turbine wind farm south of the Vineyard currently under construction, has already paid about $140,000 to help with corrosion on the lantern curtain wall of Gay Head Light. Investigation into corrosion has already started, Bill Lake, the chair of the Aquinnah energy committee, said at Tuesday’s select board meeting.

“We all know how much we enjoy the view from the cliffs, the view from the lighthouse,” Mr. Lake said. “We take seriously negotiating with these wind farms to make sure that we can get as much mitigation done as we can.”

South Fork Wind, another developer, has also agreed to pay $175,000 for repairs to the lighthouse, as well as $40,000 to help with Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant access for the Aquinnah shops, according to federal documents.

Negotiations over historic preservation act funds are still ongoing with several other wind developers. Revolution Wind, a planned 700-megawatt farm that if built would be the closest to the Vineyard, has been going back and forth with the town and could have the potential for some of the largest mitigation fees.

“From the cliffs, you’re able to actually see the spans of the Newport bridge and this is substantially closer than that,” said Tom Murphy, the chair of the Aquinnah select board. 

Mr. Lake said the town has been pushing for $840,000 from Revolution Wind to replace the lantern room at Gay Head Light. The company also offered about $500,000 to improve handicap access at the shops, and potentially $50,000 to winterize the Vanderhoop Homestead.

The town is asking Sunrise Wind to help pay for a support to the lantern deck and about $30,000 a year for 25 years for maintenance of the Aquinnah shops. The town is asking for a maintenance fund for the lighthouse from New England Wind and plans to request Beacon Wind supply about $40,000 for new fencing at the lighthouse park.

The conversation around funds for the lighthouse did strike a somber tone, though, as officials remembered the late Len Butler.

Mr. Butler was instrumental in moving the lighthouse safely back to its current perch on the cliffs. He had started the negotiations for the lighthouse with the wind companies and had been involved until recently. He died earlier this month.

The select board voted Tuesday to rename the lighthouse park as the Len Butler Memorial Park, and vowed to come up with a new process for dedicating town landmarks after some concerns were raised by member Juli Vanderhoop. 

“He has worked endlessly on this, to care for it for years,” Mr. Murphy said. “I think it’s time for this community to give back to somebody who's dedicated their life to that lighthouse.”