Despite the , construction on the state-funded $1.5 million roundabout is slated to begin this coming October. According to an article in the Vineyard Gazette, Oak Bluffs selectmen signed documents on Monday morning “for temporary easements to take some small parcels of land bordering the road by eminent domain.”
While the town was originally told that they would have to no part in paying for the project, highway superintendent Richard Combra told the selectmen yesterday that $12,150 from Chapter 90 funds would be used to pay for the easements. Combra said that spending this money would not impact other town projects such as paving and maintaining roads.
Town selectmen Gregory Coogan and Walter Vail said they weren’t worried about using town money to pay the easements. However, selectmen Gail Barmakian expressed concern that this may not go over well with the “still divided” town of Oak Bluffs. She voted against the easements “saying that the town has an obligation to voters to let them know about additional costs.”