The ongoing affordable housing crisis and long-term town planning were central themes in Tisbury Tuesday night as candidates for elected office introduced themselves to voters.

The forum was sponsored by the League of Women Voters. The election is April 28. The annual town meeting is next Tuesday.

There are two contested races in town, one for selectman and one on the planning board. Frank Brunelle and Larry Gomez are vying for the open selectman’s seat; one-term selectman Jonathan Snyder is not seeking reelection.

Mr. Brunelle is also challenging incumbent planning board member Daniel Seidman for a five-year seat on that board.

Both candidates for selectman cited affordable housing as the biggest challenge Tisbury would face in the future.

“The mean amount of money people are making in town is coming down and it’s forcing a lot of people out,” Mr. Gomez said. He said he believes there is a need to create more housing solutions through planning and zoning regulations.

Mr. Brunelle echoed the pressing need for affordable housing but said that homes also need built with environmental consciousness. He suggested working with universities to brainstorm new designs for green, inexpensive homes.

A more heated discussion took place between the two planning board candidates. Mr. Brunelle cited a need to address the town’s waterfront zoning bylaw, which he said had led to spot zoning, and he criticized an ongoing project to address traffic flow on the Beach Road corridor. He said he did not have faith in the current board and felt a change was needed. Pressed by members of the audience to speak to initiatives that did not involve Beach Road, Mr. Brunelle said he hoped to see the school become a green building.

Mr. Seidman, who also serves as treasurer of the nonprofit Island Housing Trust and the Dukes County Regional Housing Authority, defended the work of the current planning board, which he said was “functioning as a tremendous group” and working to create solutions for the town. He pointed to an item on the town meeting warrant that would allow the planning board to review projects larger than 3,000 square feet in the B-1 business district, sparked by last year’s Stop & Shop review process before the Martha’s Vineyard Commission.

“People were very upset that a large project could be built [in town] with no input from the planning board,” Mr. Seidman said. The idea for the warrant article came out of the town’s recent visioning process.

Mr. Brunelle said he had not attended any of the town visioning meetings because the waterfront zoning bylaw was not addressed. Mr. Seidman noted that the meetings were “citizen led.”

“It was not a one-agenda thing,” he said.

Two uncontested write-in candidates also spoke. Ben Robinson, appointed last year to fill a vacancy on the planning board, is now seeking election to a three-year term. Pamela Brock, who recently became a year-round town resident, is running as a write-in candidate for a position on the finance committee. Ms. Brock said she had participated in the town visioning process and was inspired by the sessions.

“I’ve been learning an awful lot from that, and found everybody very welcoming,” she said.