Capital improvements at the Aquinnah Circle are set to bring the Island’s second annual outdoor town meeting season full circle Saturday, when the smallest town on the Island convenes to decide the fate of big ticket projects around town hall and the Cliffs.

The Aquinnah annual town meeting will be held at 3 p.m. on Saturday, June 19 outdoors on the tarmac in front of the town fire station. The quorum is 42 voters. Longtime town moderator Michael Hebert will preside.

Unlike four of the larger towns on the Island, there will be no tent or Tabernacle roof to provide cover from sun or inclement weather Saturday. But town administrator Jeffrey Madison said provisions have been made to move the meeting inside to the town hall if Mother Nature doesn’t cooperate.

“Things have loosened enough, and things are comfortable enough,” Mr.

Madison said. “I’m asking people to bring masks.”

After a pandemic-influenced year that saw significant spending decreases and a freeze on municipal salaries, voters will be asked to certify a $5.6 million operating budget, representing a 6.5 per cent increase over FY2021.

There is no override in the budget, but increases include a three per cent cost of living adjustment for town employees, as well as increases to the accounting line and telephone and computer spending.

“The [COLA] is a little higher than it would have been, but that’s because last year we didn’t do one because of Covid,” Mr. Madison said. “We increased some line items that have been static for a number of years.”

Mr. Madison also noted that the town had made last-minute provisions to keep the Gay Head Light open four days a week this summer without forcing an override, even though the chances of opening the lighthouse seemed slim when the budget was written in February.

The first 15 articles of the 28-article town meeting warrant involve school spending questions for either the regional high school or the up-Island school district, including the town’s share of expenses for two new electric school buses, IT improvements to the high school, windows at the Chilmark School and a walk-in freezer at the West Tisbury School.

Voters will also be asked to give a green light to planning for developments in and around town hall and the Gay Head Cliffs.

Article 20 seeks a total of $85,000 for the planning and design of new bathrooms at the Circle, as well as renovations and additions to the town hall. The article requires a two-thirds vote. A separate article seeks $20,000 for town hall improvements.

“This is a two-pronged project,” Mr. Madison said. “The capital improvements here at the town hall, and the construction of restrooms at Aquinnah Circle, we are required to do by our geographic location.”

He said the bathroom money would go toward the construction of a new facility closer to the shops and parking area at the top of the hill at the Circle. The current, aging bathrooms are at the bottom of the hill, which has long been an issue for tourists visiting the Cliffs.

“People come out here, at the end of the Island, and they have to have facilities to use. We try, at great expense, to provide those facilities,” Mr. Madison said.

The long-desired town hall renovation plans will look to upgrade another aging facility, Mr. Madison said, enlarging the town hall and police station, and renovating decaying features of the building off State Road.

“The windows are rotting out. The doors don’t open . . . there’s no AC in the building. The meeting room is too small. Is there a plan? Yeah, fix the place,” Mr. Madison said.

Voters will also be asked to approve $55,000 in Community Preservation Act funds for improvements to the former Manning house at the Aquinnah Circle, as well as more than $60,000 to defray mortgage costs on the property, which the town acquired in 2014. Another $5,000 in CPC funding will go toward the creation of a pedestrian walkway to the Vanderhoop Homestead.

Voters will also have the opportunity to decide on a project that would use approximately five acres of land behind town hall for the creation of four affordable housing rental units, as well as a “food forest” and children’s playground. The plan, still in its early stages, was developed by the town affordable housing committee in conjunction with the Conway School, and requires a two-thirds majority vote. A separate CPC article asks the town to pay $24,000 for the costs related to borrowing $200,000 for the planning and design of the apartments.

“The housing authority has asked that article be on the warrant,” Mr. Madison said.

The town is also looking to start over from scratch on a long-running saga to sell a 3.6-acre parcel of inland, town-owned land off Lighthouse Road, asking voters to rescind town meeting votes in 2004 and 2008 to allow the sale. The article looks to authorize the town to sell the parcel, addressed at 955 State Road but found at the end of Pancake Hollow, for no less than $450,000.

“It’s been something that has been considered for a number of years,” Mr. Madison said. “The article is simply to clear up any future misunderstanding . . . and would allow the selectmen to sell the land under state law to help the stabilization fund.”

Other articles request $11,200 for a new highway department mower and $30,000 for restroom maintenance at the Cliffs.

Mr. Madison was confident the town would be able to conduct business with alacrity.

“I hope it takes 15 minutes,” Mr. Madison said. “It won’t go past dark.”