The long-planned project to re-engineer the East Chop bluff got a major boost with an announcement by the Federal Emergency Management Agency that it has awarded $10 million to the town.


Discouraged by a stalled quest for federal funding, the town of Oak Bluffs is now looking for other ways to dredge the sand-filled channel beneath the Little Bridge at Sengekontacket Pond. The inlet has now closed and the window to dredge it is also closing, with April the deadline for work to be done.

Oak Bluffs is one step closer to receiving disaster aid to dredge a channel to Sengekontacket Pond, following informal approval from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Oak Bluffs continues to press for federal disaster aid to dredge the channel below the Little Bridge and for four other projects.

A recent engineering study of the East Chop bluff has revealed further deterioration of the region, which was severely damaged by erosion and major storm events in recent years.

But help may be on its way.

New FEMA maps mean many home and business owners in the commonwealth must either pay millions of dollars for renovations or shell out for flood insurance premiums that reach beyond $30,000 a year.