Thanks to a new assessment of town emergency services and infrastructure, property owners in Tisbury may soon be seeing a reduction in their insurance rates.
Fire chief John Schilling told the Tisbury selectmen Tuesday that the town had received a rating of three from Insurance Services Offices, a risk assessment company. Insurance providers use data from the company to set rates.
The rating scale is from one to 10, with 10 being the worst.
Tisbury’s rating is based upon a comprehensive evaluation of the town’s fire department and its water systems. The last town review took place in 2002, and Tisbury received a rate of five.
Mr. Schilling thanked town water superintendent Paul Wohler for his initiatives in improving town water, including replacing the mains, and said the improved rating was a true community effort.
“Over the past decade, I want to recognize that the fire department has pushed not only the voters but also the leadership and the finance committee of the town very hard with our budget during these tight financial times and pushed them to invest more in the departments,” Mr. Schilling said. “We’ve had great support . . . and this investment has paid off for the community.”
He said that the rating of three was the lowest on the Island, adding that of the 49,000 communities in the country surveyed by ISO, only 2,953, or six per cent, received a three or higher.
The rating applies only to areas in town that are connected to municipal water. Those outside the town water system received a rating of nine, the same as in 2002.
“You can’t get better than a nine if you don’t have access to municipal water,” Mr. Schilling said. “The water system ends where it ends.”
In other business, the board heard a proposal from Marie Laursen to create a traffic mitigation committee and renewed victualler’s licenses for the Black Dog Tavern and Little House Cafe. Assistant to the town administrator Aase Jones reported that JB Blau, owner of the unfinished Copper Wok restaurant, had filed an application to transfer the restaurant’s beer and wine license from current owners Mansion House, LLC, to Mr. Blau. She said Mr. Blau expects to be open by Easter.
Ms. Jones also told the board she was seeking creative people to help design the cover for the 2013 town report. The concept this year will be The Arts in Tisbury.