Plans to turn the empty harborfront property owned by Ernie Boch Jr. into a park were welcomed by the Tisbury selectmen this week, but new questions surfaced about public access.

On Tuesday, a representative for Mr. Boch, Dan Clemmey, presented the selectmen with plans for a park at 20 Beach Road where the old Entwhistle Building used to stand. As a part of the plan, the property owners are asking for a sewer easement to be moved to the edge of the property. The plans showed a circular path surrounded by plantings and enclosed in two types of fencing, wooden on the side, black aluminum in the front and back. A boardwalk with benches goes along the harbor, outside of the fencing. Mr. Clemmey described it as a private park that may be open to the public at some undetermined times.

While the selectmen agreed the plan would be a massive improvement to the vacant property, the unclear public access aspect of the plan gave some pause.

Selectman Tristan Israel said the park was originally pitched to the town as a public park.

“I really thought that was really wonderful and such a great thing for the town and a gesture, it’s just feeling a little different to me now,” he said. “Anything you could do to open this up . . .”

Mr. Clemmey said liability and maintenance concerns preclude the park from remaining open at all times.

“We don’t want to leave it open, it is private property, it is a private park, it’s not public.” he said.

“The more open it is, I think, the more willing we would be to help manage the ramifications,” Mr. Israel said, citing trash and landscaping maintenance as examples.

Selectman and board chairman Larry Gomez noted the town doesn’t have enough money to maintain its own parks.

Selectman Melinda Loberg agreed the plan was a huge improvement to the area, but she had concerns about the fencing on the sides. She said the fencing would run so close to abutting buildings that it would hinder members of the Island rowing club from gaining access to their equipment, which is stored on Gannon and Benjamin property.

“They will no longer have access to their storage place for their big stuff, their oars et cetera,”said Mrs. Loberg, who is also a rower. “There is also question of beach access which is something that the town has always said they like to promote,” she said.

Town finance director Jon Snyder asked how long the property would stay a park.

Mr. Clemmey replied that he was uncertain, but said: “I would assume the extent of work that we are doing here . . . it’s going to stay that way for awhile.”

Abutting property owner Robert Sawyer had concerns about his sewer service being disrupted.

“We can’t afford for our sewer line to be cut off, and I just need to be assured that whatever the board decides . . . we aren’t going to find that our sewer line, that we’ve been paying for for many years, is all of a sudden disconnected,” he said.

Town administrator Jay Grande said the town attorney and Mr. Boch’s attorney are working on a legal agreement involving the sewer easement. A permitting process with conservation commission also is in process.

After a brief executive session, the selectmen reconvened to announce negotiations to purchase 55 West William street for $675,000 are under way. The town has signed a memorandum of agreement for exclusive purchase rights until Sept. 29. Any purchase is contingent on a town meeting vote. The house, which is located across the street from the Tisbury School, is under consideration as a site for a new town hall. The Island Housing trust previously expressed interest in the property with a proposal to raze the building and rebuild, but later ended the deal.

Selectmen said detailed plans for the property have not been developed yet.

In other business, the board accepted a donation of $10,500 from the Friends of Owen Park for improvements to the park (this is the third year the friends have donated a sum around $10,000). Selectmen also transferred $10,000 to continue paying a strategic planning consultant, Strategic Policy Partnership, LLC, who has been working with the town for over a year to update and revise police procedures as well as work toward becoming an accredited department. The consultant last released a report in February.