Tisbury voters postponed a $1.8 million proposal to bury utilities along Beach Road and approved a variety of spending articles as the annual town meeting concluded Wednesday night.

A total of 136 voters were on hand at the Tisbury school gymnasium to finish the annual town meeting, which began Tuesday with approval of sewering expansions and spending including funding for the Kuehn’s Way affordable housing development.

Katharine Scott was concerned about the library's Shakespeare garden. — Tova Katzman

On night two voters sped through the remaining 26 articles on the town meeting warrant in just under two hours, approving $475,000 for a new fire department pumper truck, $50,000 to design a State Road sewer district, $750,000 for a new waterworks garage and office building, and a $27.1 million budget with scant discussion.

But when it came to spending $1.8 million to bury power and utility lines along Beach Road, voters were not so eager. Town administrator John (Jay) Grande said that even without burying the utility lines there will still be substantial improvements to the area.

“Consider whether you want this project to move forward with full undergrounding of utilities from Five Corners to the bridge,” he said.

Finance committee member Jeff Kristal made a motion to table the article to give selectmen time to fine tune the proposal and negotiate a better price with utility company Eversource. Voters approved the motion by a vote of 90 to 28.

Tisbury joined voters in West Tisbury, Edgartown, Oak Bluffs, and Chilmark in approving a petitioned article asking the police to refrain from using town funds and resources to enforce federal immigration laws, in keeping with current practice. Police chief Daniel Hanavan read a statement supporting the article, and answered questions from two voters concerned that the article might impair the police department’s ability to apprehend criminals.

Voters sped through remaining 26 articles on annual town meeting warrant. — Tova Katzman

Voters applauded after the question passed.

An effort to reduce nitrogen in saltwater ponds and watersheds got a boost with approval to spend $60,000 for engineering to bring online so-called wicks — a vertical leaching field for the wastewater treatment facility that would save space and increase the capacity of the plant.

Voters had questions about the project, with Aase Jones asking if other communities have used wicks, whether they are approved by the Department of Environmental Protection and how much has already been spent on the project.

Josh Goldstein asked if the voters would be back at another town meeting to approve more money for another section of the project.

“I desperately want this system to come online… what’s holding us back from getting it done?” he asked.

Voters also approved funding for various capital projects, including $30,000 for town hall steeple repairs, $20,000 for repairs at the Tisbury Police station, $42,000 for a new dump truck and $36,000 for new snow plows. A request for funds for a new field of transient rental moorings was amended from $65,000 for 20 moorings to $21,000 for 10 moorings.

The quick pace was interrupted with an amended $40,000 request to design an expansion for the town library. George Balco, chairman of the library board of trustees, said the cost was reduced from $60,000 in response to concerns about spending.

Selectmen Tristan Israel, Melinda Loberg, and Larry Gomez. — Tova Katzman

He said a new multi-purpose function room is necessary and will increase capacity and comfort, and that the library should remain where it is, off Main street. Library director Amy Ryan noted that adult programs have doubled in number and tripled in attendance.

Mr. Kristal questioned the spending in light of ongoing plans to replace or renovate the Tisbury school.

“I think they could hold off a year and wait to see what the town decides for the school,” he said.

Katherine Scott said she was sorry to hear that the planned expansion would encroach into the Shakespeare garden.

“I feel as though the trustees should be the trustees of this garden and not obliterate it,” she said.

The article was approved.

Voters also approved a new seven-member Tisbury Government Study Panel, amended from a Blue Ribbon Committee, that will take a broad look at town government structure and evaluate efficiency in how the town governs and conducts business.

The meeting ended at 9:03 p.m. and voters dispersed into the foggy evening.