State Rep. Dylan Fernandes and Sen. Julian Cyr visited the all-Island selectmen’s association last week to talk about two major issues: wastewater management and the affordable housing crisis.

Mr. Cyr discussed his proposal to create a Cape Cod and Islands water protection fund as a subset of the state’s existing revolving loan fund for clean water projects. Cape Cod towns are legally obligated to manage nitrogen pollution as a result of a 2011 lawsuit with the Conservation Law Foundation. Mr. Cyr said he envisioned money from the fund being available for dredging, aquaculture, and wastewater treatment planning in addition to infrastructure.

The fund would be supported by state and federal money. It’s possible some support would come from a 2.75 per cent wastewater tax on short-term rentals through a bill the two legislators have introduced.

“One way or another, funding must be secured to address wastewater,” Mr. Cyr said. He said if passed, the earliest the fund would kick in would be 2020.

“You guys have a huge wastewater infrastructure problem,” said Mr. Fernandes. “This is a way for that to be paid for by people who come in the summertime.”

The rental tax bill has passed the joint committee on environment, natural resources, and agriculture and is on its way to the house ways and means committee, according to Senator Cyr’s spokeswoman Leslie Sandberg.

The legislators also revisited the possibility of creating a housing bank on Martha’s Vineyard similar to one being created on Nantucket.

They emphasized that doing so would require the backing of all six towns.

“We both feel a real desire to really help with those efforts here but there needs to be a consensus on what that is and looks like,” said Mr. Cyr.

Selectmen acknowledged the need for affordable housing support for young professionals such as nurses, teachers and others.

“We just can’t keep up,” said West Tisbury selectman Skipper Manter, speaking about the need for moderate income housing. “There needs to be a funding source . . . I certainly feel that is the only thing that’s going to save us here.”

Others voiced frustration that many of the obstacles to creating a housing bank come from the real estate lobby in Boston.

“Those forces are external to what we want,” said Edgartown selectman Arthur Smadbeck. “There are these external forces that are preventing it.”

The state representatives said they plan to continue the discussion in an affordable housing forum on the Island early this summer.

They said if the Nantucket measure passes, it could serve as a good model for the Vineyard.

In other business, Martha’s Vineyard Commission executive director Adam Turner spoke about the upcoming U.S. Census in 2020. He said under funding of the Census Bureau and a sense of distrust in the undocumented immigrant community could undermine the counting process.

“I think the Island is going to be challenged this time to make sure we get an accurate count,” Mr. Turner said. He said census data can affect federal and state funding calculations.

He also called on selectmen to be more proactive about sea level rise, pointing out that due to flooding from the most recent storm, the hospital was once again inaccessible from the main entrance on Beach Road.

“We need to do more in terms of sea level rise planning and other kinds of regular assessment strategies,” Mr. Turner said. “Sometimes we wait and react to what happens.”

Community Services director Julie Fay and Healthy Aging MV chairman Paddy Moore briefed selectmen on Island resources for the aging population.

They will be requesting a total of $198,610 from the towns this year to fund First Stop MV, CORE, and Healthy Aging MV.

First Stop MV is an online directory of community resources including disability services, housing, legal assistance, and family planning. CORE stands for Counseling, Outreach, and Referral for Elders. CORE clinicians visit and serve home-bound elders. Healthy Aging MV is a group that focuses on Islandwide planning for supporting an aging population. The program is currently volunteer-based, but Ms. Moore said the organization needs to pay some staff.

Selectmen also discussed taxi regulations with a briefing from former Oak Bluffs selectman Walter Vail on his research. Mr. Vail said he started working on the issue when representatives from Healthy Aging complained of inconsistent taxi service and fares. Among other things, he recommended an all-Island taxi commission.

In a report to selectmen, Martina Thornton, county manager and appointee for the board of the Martha’s Vineyard Center for Living, said the former Visiting Nurses Association building hasn’t received any interest from potential renters for the second floor.

Three years ago all six towns voted to support a $1.6 million bond from the county for the purchase of the building.