The Oak Bluffs planning board opened discussions this week with the sellers of the former Kupersmith property in the Southern Woodlands.

National Land Partners Finance sold the 26-lot development to a group of private buyers at a foreclosure auction on June 26. A group led by Paul Adamson, a South Boston businessman, paid $5.15 million for the 51-acre partially improved property off Old County Road. A condition of the sale was that NLP Finance clear all permitting and licensing issues with the town and the Martha’s Vineyard Commission before the closing.

Oak Bluffs planning board discussed future of the property at Thursday meeting. — Steve Myrick

The property was approved as a luxury home subdivision by the town and the MVC 11 years ago, but never built.

At a planning board meeting Thursday evening, attorneys for the planning board, the buyer and the seller disagreed on whether the planning board has authority to void the special permit issued in 2004. If that happens, the buyers would be forced to begin a complex permitting process before the planning board and the MVC all over again.

“To have to start from scratch would create chaos,” said Michelle Manners, general counsel for NLP Finance. “That’s why we’re so concerned.”

“Don’t start the game over, we can play it right now,” said Geoghan Coogan, a Vineyard Haven attorney who represents the buyers. “Our intention is not to go backwards. We’re not interested in hanging around for the backwards part.”

After political battle, Southern Woodlands was permitted for 26 lots on 51 acres, but subdivision was never built. — Mark Lovewell

Planning board member Ewell Hopkins wants his board to ask the seller for new terms on affordable housing mitigation, nitrogen limits and land issues such as buffering and preservation of old walking paths.

In a letter to the planning board last month special attorney Daniel Perry advised the planning board that it has the right to void the special permit since conditions attached to the original permit were never completely satisfied, including finishing roads and utilities.

Mr. Perry also attended the meeting Thursday.

Ms. Manners, NLP Finance’s general counsel, sent a letter to the planning board before Thursday’s meeting urging the board not to void the special permit.

“We believe that this is neither a legally viable option for the town or one that is beneficial for the residents of Oak Bluffs,” she wrote in the letter dated July 7. “Attempts by the current planning board to undermine our rights would cause NLP Finance, LLC significant harm and we would seek appropriate redress. We believe there is substantial interest in the lots . . . .  and  the sales and building activity it will generate will be a great financial benefit to the town of Oak Bluffs. Continued litigation of this matter would appear to be in the best interest of no one.”

Mr. Hopkins noted that a number of town land use bylaws and policies have changed since the original permit was issued, including stricter limits on nitrogen discharge from sewer or septic systems. The town is currently working with the town of Tisbury to develop a master plan to limit nitrogen loading in the Lagoon, widely believed to be the most compromised saltwater pond on the Vineyard.

Planning board chairman Brian Packish said he gets three to seven calls a day about the development, and lately, many of them concern nitrogen levels. That issue was also worrying William Alwardt, a commercial fisherman who works in both Sengekontacket and Lagoon Ponds.

“A developer from Boston, all he cares about is making money,” Mr. Alwardt said. “I make my living off [the ponds]. I don’t see how this town can not review this. It’s wrong.”

Harry Patten, founder of NLP Finance, said he hoped to reach an amicable accord with the town.

“We don’t want to fight, we don’t want to go to court,” he said. “If there are things that you need from us, tell us what they are. If we’re able to meet the requirements that you need, then let’s do it. Let’s make it simple, let’s not make it difficult, let’s not make it contentious. Let’s get it done.”

The board will meet again on July 23 and consider calling public hearing one week later, to gather more public opinion.

Because the property was also the subject of a development of regional impact (DRI) review and decision, the NLP will also be required to separately come before the Martha’s Vineyard Commission for a sign-off on the plan.