The Martha’s Vineyard Commission closed the public hearing on an AT&T proposal for a permanent cell tower on Chappaquiddick following a third public session Thursday evening. The MVC expects to deliberate and make a decision on the issue before the end of the year.

The current temporary tower on Sampson avenue contains concealed antennas inside the 104-foot tall structure. The proposed new tower would be a more conventional design, with four sets of antennas attached on the outside, near the top of a 115 tower.

The temporary tower has improved cell phone service on Chappaquiddick, including emergency communications.

“The coverage from the temporary tower right now is adequate for Chappaquiddick,” said Chappaquiddick resident Roger Becker. “We don’t need to have anything more for safety. People are very happy with the present configuration.”

Brian Grossman, an attorney representing AT&T, said leaving the temporary tower in place is not an option.

“It does not provide all the services,” said Mr. Grossman. “It does not utilize all the frequencies. AT&T should not be penalized for saying we were willing to bring a temporary solution here. AT&T is entitled to build out all of its frequencies.”

Law enforcement officers and first responders testified strongly in favor of the proposed permanent tower at previous hearings.

Trustees of Reservations Martha’s Vineyard superintendent Chris Kennedy cited several examples of the new cell phone coverage helping medics get to an emergency scene quickly.

“Our primary concern is for emergency communications,” said Mr. Kennedy. “The existing site, for better or for worse, works. We’re concerned about antennas in neighborhoods, but we’re far more concerned at this point with emergency communications.”

The matter goes next to the MVC’s land use planning committee, which will make recommendations to the full commission.