02 – Town Meeting

Lou’s Views

“Unofficial” Minutes & Comments


BOC’s Special Meeting 01/26/22

Board of Commissioners’ Agenda Packet » click here

BOC’s Supplemental Agenda Packet » click here

Audio Recording » click here


1. Public Comments

A significant number of property owners sent comments opposed to the proposed  parking plan as submitted.

 2. Discussion and Possible Action on Items Necessary to Proceed with Paid Parking, To Include:

a) Finalization of Parking Spaces
b) Ordinance 22-02, An Ordinance Amending the Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Title VII: Traffic Code
c) Resolution 22-01, Resolution Amending the Holden Beach Fee Schedule
d)
Services Agreement between the Town and Otto Connect

Agenda Packet – pages 71 – 115 / Forty-four pages which is too large to include here

Previously reported – January 2022

Proposed Paid Parking Plan

What this means to you:

No parking permitted at any time on public streets or public rights-of-way except in designated parking spaces’

    • No parking on public streets except in designated parking spaces
    • No parking in rights-of-way – that includes property owners, family, friends, and their guests
    • No post and rope permitted in rights-of-way

The Board approved moving forward with the paid parking plan beginning this April

The paid parking plan calls for 935 public parking spaces
The Board will determine where to designate parking spaces in rights-of-way

The Town-owned properties in the 800 block will be immediately turned into parking lots.

Key Takeaways:

Public is OK with paid parking
The number of designated spaces is excessive
The public does not want designated parking spaces in the rights-of-ways
They adamantly opposed parking spaces where there is no public beach access
They feel they should be able to park in rights-of-way on their own property
They should be able to decide if the public can park in rights-of-way on their property
Property owners should not pay for parking

A significant number of property owners sent comments opposed to the proposed parking plan as submitted.

Update –
Pat explained that Otto did what they were asked to do and identified every potential parking space. The Parking Committee and the BOC’s should have whittled it down before now. They started that process at the last meeting, and this is a working session to continue to do that. The goal is to be able to have a proposal ready for the regular BOC’s February meeting. She has prepared three (3) options for the Board to discuss today. Realizes that whatever  proposal submitted will be a compromise and is not going to make everyone happy. They are trying to do what is best for all of us. Alan clarified that the discussion is to reduce the number of proposed parking spaces and get to a reasonable number. Page took point as they went area by area and determined the number of spots allowed and that would also be ready by April. They tentatively approved a working document, still subject to change, regarding five hundred and six (506) designated parking spaces only.

They did not address  the traffic code, fee schedule, or the Otto agreement.

Recessed till Wednesday, February 2nd at 3:30pm

Summary of key changes made:

    • “Compact” designation was changed to “LSV” for low-speed vehicles (i.e., golf carts)
    • Eliminated parking not located near a Public Access
    • The parking on most side streets intersecting Ocean Blvd was reduced to two LSV spaces
    • Right of Way (ROW) parking adjacent to marshland was kept unchanged but is dependent on the results of the wetland delineation
    • Swordfish might not have sufficient space for parking since the road is off-center on the ROW
    • Pier parking lot was eliminated
    • New parking zone was added for Raleigh St.

Other changes are noted on the table. HBPOA has created  an updated map that reflects the changes made at the meeting to the best of our ability.  It also shows green arrows for public beach accessways and emergency vehicle accessways.  Refer to the table for a narrative description of the location.

The table compares the results with the original plan from the January 18th meeting.  The numbers shown in the table are based on our notes from the meeting and from listening to the audio recording on Facebook, which was often very difficult to follow.  The total of 576 spaces shown on the table doesn’t agree with the “around 500” number that was stated at the end of the meeting.   This discrepancy will need to be resolved once the Town releases the “official” number.  It was noted that the results of the meeting are a “working document” and subject to change.

Holden Beach board meets today to discuss paid parking
The Holden Beach Board of Commissioners will hold a special meeting today, Jan. 26, starting at 2 p.m. to address the addition of paid parking and changes in parking laws. The proposal calls for an estimated 935 public parking spaces. Of these, 367 would be placed in town-owned lots and 568 in public right-of-way areas. Right-of-way areas tend to be roadside parking: the area between the edge of the travel lane and the beginning of the property line. At the initial meeting, some had concerns about the location and price of the new parking. “I’m not against paid parking in general, but against the right-of-way paid parking in front of people’s homes,” said one citizen voicing her concerns at the meeting. Her sentiment echoes those of the Holden Beach Property Owners Association. They write that some residents would no longer be able to prohibit strangers from parking in front of their homes or invite guests to park without payment. The current proposal places the price of parking at $4 per hour up to $20 per day. Alongside this newly designated parking is an ordinance which would bar all on-street parking outside of designated areas.

 You can see exactly where the parking would be placed below from page 72 to 82. Holden Beach Board of Commissioners January 18 2022

Read more » click here

Holden Beach residents speak on paid parking proposal at special called meeting
More local beaches in Brunswick County are exploring the idea of paid parking. Residents packed the public assembly room at Holden Beach Town Hall, all hoping to speak their piece on the paid parking proposal.

Holden Beach Commissioners called the special meeting to discuss revisions to the paid public parking proposal that identifies 935 public parking spaces around town. For more than an hour during the meeting, residents expressed concerns about increased trash, issues with accessibility to private beach accesses, and if certain areas on the island would have significantly more parking than others. “We are against parking on the canal streets and those highly residential areas. We think the public parking, paid parking should be reserved to the bridge area and common areas that the town owns,” said a resident during public comments. “We have these little things, purple I think, that is put up on the island as owners, if we could covert that into some way to show that we are residents, and we don’t need to be charged for the right to park there and some of these places,” said a resident during public comments. Commissioner Pat Kwiatkowski reminded residents that a final vote on the parking proposal is not being made at the meeting. “This is a working meeting, for us to try to come to grips with what we want to put forward at the February BOCM as a proposal,” said Pat Kwiatkowski, commissioner. Mayor Pro Tem Rick Smith said this meeting is crucial for the board to make a vote at its February meeting. “Trying to figure out a way to make the parking work. Again, the visitor that come here, we cannot stop. We cannot throw a gate on the bridge to stop them from coming, so there coming, but we need to kind of guide them to where they need to be,” said Mayor Pro Tem Rick Smith. ​Commissioners also discussed what revisions they believe need to be made regarding zoning and what qualifies as a compact vehicle. Their next meeting is February 15.
Read more » click here

Holden Beach pares down paid parking proposal in special called meeting
No decisions were made Wednesday afternoon at the Holden Beach special meeting; however, leaders used the time to refine the paid parking proposal to be presented at a future meeting. The meeting kicked off with a passionate crowd, and an hour’s worth of public comment sharing concerns about the plans. The speakers at Wednesday’s meeting were not opposed to charging visitors to park; instead, they worried about the number of spots, their locations in residential neighborhoods and close to private beach accesses, where property owners were worried about trespassing and the safety of the families on the island. The company the town of Holden Beach hired initially mapped out more than 900 potential parking spots and outlined their location in red on maps presented last week before commissioners. “A lot of them are in spaces that there just should not be parking, no public beach access, the only way to go to the beach would be to trespass,” said Tom Myers, president of the Holden Beach Property Owners Association of the initial maps laid before commissioners. “A lot of them are on sensitive areas like the marsh behind me — people are concerned about it, the environment and protecting the environment. And there’s a lot of proposed right of way parking, which basically is in front of people’s houses, maybe on people’s yards.” At Wednesday’s meeting, the potential paid parking was cut down significantly to closer to 500 spots, as leaders went street by street deciding, during the lengthy work session, where spots would and wouldn’t be appropriate. Right of ways in some residential areas close to private beach accesses, lots the town doesn’t own yet, and lots that would be deemed marshland were taken off the list of parking options. They also changed the spots designated for compact cars on the maps to be strictly for LSV and golf cart parking. Several Brunswick county beach towns have considered adding paid parking in the past, but Holden Beach would be the first beach town in the county to charge the public for street parking. “The first one — the dominoes may fall. We know for sure that others are looking at it. Everyone’s evaluating because they’re all facing the same problem, which is the ‘off the island’ folks want to come onto the island, and they bring additional expense; there’s trash pick-up, there’s policing, restrooms — we got the porta-potties out. So, it’s only fair that those costs get shared with the people who use them,” said Myers. “Brunswick County is exploding; there’s just more and more people coming here, coming here because they wanna go to the beach. It’s just reconciling that situation in terms of how much parking can we allow before it starts to change the character of Holden Beach.” Leaders anticipate the plan will take more time before it’s finalized and presented at board meetings in the coming weeks, which could be as early as the regular February meeting.
Read more » click here

3. Executive Session Pursuant to North Carolina General Statute 143-318.11(A)(5), To Instruct the Staff or Agent Concerning the Negotiation of the Price and Terms of Contracts Concerning the Acquisition of Real Properties – Mayor Pro Tem Smith

No decision was made – No action taken

This is the list of properties currently being considered for acquisition by the Town
Seven (7) pier properties currently under contract
Block Q
Parcels 232NH002, 232NH003, 232NB014, 232NB015, 232NB021, 232NB022     

To View Parcels » click here

Brunswick County – Basic Search
Select Parcel Number
Enter Parcel Number
Click Owner Name
Click View Map for this Parcel 


BOC’s Meeting 02/02/22

Board of Commissioners’ Agenda Packet » click here

Audio Recording » click here


Agenda Packet – pages 1 – 11 / Eleven (11) pages which is too large to include here

Staff has amended Ordinance 22-02, An Ordinance Amending the Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Title VII: Traffic Code in accordance with the Board’s direction and input from the previous meeting. The working draft document is attached for the Board’s review and discussion at the February 2nd meeting.

1. Discussion and Possible Action on Items Necessary to Proceed with Paid Parking, To Include:

a) Finalization of Parking Spaces
b) Ordinance 22-02, An Ordinance Amending the Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Title VII: Traffic Code
c) Resolution 22-01, Resolution Amending the Holden Beach Fee Schedule
d)
Services Agreement between the Town and Otto Connect 

Update –
Almost a two-hour meeting, as they attempted to work through all the issues.

Finalization of Parking Places
Revised Parking Zone and Area Table, which is included in the packet, the proposal has five hundred and six (506) designated parking spaces now.

# of Lot Spaces             134
# of ROW  Spaces         372
Total                              506   (458 Full Size / 48 LSV)

Ordinance 22-02, Title VII: Traffic Code
Pat show, she took point as they went through the proposed Ordinance 22-02. Lieutenant Frank Dilworth was a valuable resource for what should and shouldn’t be in the Ordinance.

Resolution 22-01, Fee Schedule
They discussed taking it a little bit slower than what was originally proposed
Recommendation was to take baby steps, attempt to segue into paid parking
Motion was to reduce the fee schedule, at least for the first year
Also, they added a single vehicle option to the fee schedule

Otto Connect Services Agreement
Agreement needs to be changed to reflect what was talked about today

2. Executive Session Pursuant to North Carolina General Statute 143-318.11(A)(5), To Instruct the Staff or Agent Concerning the Negotiation of the Price and Terms of Contracts Concerning the Acquisition of Real Properties – Mayor Pro Tem Smith

No decision was made – No action taken

This is the list of properties currently being considered for acquisition by the Town
Seven (7) pier properties currently under contract
Block Q
Parcels 232NH002, 232NH003, 232NB014, 232NB015, 232NB021, 232NB022

To View Parcels » click here

Brunswick County – Basic Search
Select Parcel Number
Enter Parcel Number
Click Owner Name
Click View Map for this Parcel 


BOC’s Regular Meeting 02/15/22

Board of Commissioners’ Agenda Packet click here

Audio Recording » click here


1. Public Comments on Agenda Items

There were comments made at the meeting and additional comments were posted on the Town’s website
For more information
» click here


2. Update of the Local Government Commission (LGC) Review of Financial Package for the Pier Property Purchase – Commissioner Kwiatkowski

Item was added to the agenda

In January, the Town received official notification from the LGC that consideration of the financial package would not be on their February agenda. Pat stressed that this was neither an acceptance nor a refusal, the proposed financial package is still in the works and should be on the LGC March agenda.

Pier Purchase Update
The Local Government Commission (LGC) did not include the Town’s loan application on the agenda for their February 1st meeting. 

Click here to view the email the LGC sent to the Town notifying them about this decision.  

Click here to view the Town’s loan application.

The LGC has serious concerns about:

      • The amount of public opposition to the pier purchase
      • The amount of public opposition to the paid parking plan that was listed as a source of funding for the pier purchase
      • The underwater inspection not being done
      • The payback assumptions in the Town’s financial plan for the pier
      • The Mayor’s real estate company representing the seller

As a result, the Town will not be able to close on the property on February 28th as required in the purchase contract. 

Click here to view the contract
* clause 8a addresses the situation if the Town is denied approval by the LGC


Concerns over public support, mayor involvement could put Holden Beach pier purchase on hold
The town of Holden Beach’s plan to purchase a pier and adjacent building could be put on hold after the N.C. Local Government Commission raised concerns about its financing application. The town was set to close on the two-parcel, 1.9-acre property, which includes the pier, parking lot and adjacent building for just around $3.3 million at the end of February. The deal, which has garnered mixed reactions from residents, was contingent on the town receiving financing from the Local Government Commission during its Feb. 1 meeting. But Holden Beach’s financing application was not on the February agenda. According to an email the commission sent the town in January, Holden Beach’s financing application will be kept off the agenda until several concerns can be addressed by the town. Concerns include public opposition to the purchase, even greater opposition to the parking plan meant to pay for the pier, the pier structure’s evaluation, and the involvement of Mayor Alan Holden’s real estate company, according to commission financial analyst Joe Futima, “These concerns are taken seriously by the Commission and there needs to be more time for the Town to better address them,” Futima states in the email. “We will reevaluate the application for a March placement.” According to Holden Beach Property Owners Association President Tom Myers, the concerns brought by the commission are the same ones property owners have been expressing for months. Myers said while some residents are glad the commission stepped in, others say the opportunity for the town to purchase the land is too good to pass up, despite any setbacks. “At this point, everybody’s entrenched, and it’s been going on since June,” he said. “It’s still the same arguments that we’ve been hearing from each side.” The commission noted the assumptions made in the town’s plan to pay back the financing were “less than certain.” Town officials have maintained they would not increase property taxes for the purchase and would instead use parking revenue and could potentially lease the pier and building. The commission also flagged the pier’s evaluation as a concern. According to the town’s pier inspection report, the structure has “likely surpassed its remaining service life” and is in need of immediate maintenance. “The hardware throughout the structure is heavily corroded, with greater than 50% section loss,” the report stated. Immediate repairs needed would cost at least $500,000 and would extend its service life by 10 to 15 years, according to the report. Due to bad weather, however, the scope of the pier assessment was limited and did not include an underwater assessment, meaning the full extent of its condition and the maintenance it needs is still unknown. Holden Beach officials did not respond to requests Monday for comment from the StarNews.
Read more » click here

LGC: Holden Beach application ‘unfinished’
The town of Holden Beach’s loan application to buy the Holden Beach Pier did not make it into the Local Government Commission’s Feb. 1 agenda because it wasn’t finished, according to North Carolina Treasurer Dale R. Folwell. He said that was the main reason why it wasn’t put on the agenda. Folwell said the commission also had several questions that needed to be answered as the commission continues analyzing it. “There are a lot of legal requirements that have to be vetted in order to make sure that … what is before us is adequate,” he said. He said the questions are to make sure all legal and ethical questions are met.

The commission had other questions.

• What is the town’s intended use of the pier in the future?
• Is the public aware that this purchase may have different scenarios for the future of the pier?
• If initial repairs are being considered to allow for the use of the building on the pier for lease revenue purposes, what is the long-term plan for the pier operations?
• What is the estimated cost of future expenditures for repairs/upkeep for the pier?
• This would need to be referenced in a detailed evaluation of the structure, including underwater features. Specifically, which funds will support debt service?
• Are any of these funds contingent on other actions the town would need to take before receipt?
• “We’re keepers of the public purse, the job of the LGC is to be confident and transparent,” he said, adding they do that on every transaction.

He said unfinished applications happen “more often than not.” He said the applications must be 100% completed and vetted. Folwell said he personally was not aware of the town’s plans to buy the pier. “As far as the LGC, our job … is to do our job, to make sure that transactions that are presented to us have the right amount of information,” he said. He said the commission also makes sure the price paid for the item, such as the pier, in this case, is adequate and not excessive. He said if the purchase was only a raw piece of land, it is easy to figure out the adequate price. However, when the purchase is a structure that may need more money to maintain it for future use, which is a whole different question. Folwell said the main value of the pier is under water and can’t be seen. He said the underwater inspection in this purchase is a unique but important part of the town’s application. He said the application must reflect the purchase and that all factors have been accounted for. He said anyone saying the commission is for or against anything is dealing with information he isn’t aware of and doesn’t believe exists. Folwell said there are concerns with Holden Beach Mayor Alan Holden being a dual agent on this purchase. “This is not about how anybody fees about anybody personally, but this is about issues related to whether all the boxes have been checked as far as the transparency on the transaction,” he said. He said the commission is also dealing with this another local event in Ocean Isle Beach. In January, the state audit department reviewed and then faulted the way Ocean Isle Beach Mayor Debbie Smith’s real estate company purchased her town’s former police station, along with the way the transaction was handled by the town of Ocean Isle Beach. The audit department said Smith made an offer on the land before it was made available to the public, along with a few
other issues. The state recommended officials involved receive training and passed the information along to the district attorney to investigate. “It’s not about (Holden) and it’s not about Holden Beach,” Folwell said. Rather, Folwell said this is about anyone at any one time in the state who is involved in a transaction that isn’t completely
transparent. He said the commission applies the same standards statewide. Folwell couldn’t comment on whether the town will finish the application in time for the next meeting. He said the commission doesn’t know how long it will take to do an application. “If this is a great deal today, it’ll be a great deal next week and next month,” he said.
Folwell said just because an item isn’t on a particular agenda doesn’t mean it has anything to do with the “virtue of the deal.” He said the commission is in the business of checking hundreds of applications a year. They come from 1,300 entities encompassing 100 counties and more than 548 municipalities. There are also 30 staffers to sort through the applications. Folwell said the commission doesn’t pick and choose what rules apply to a particular applicant. He said because of the sheer number of applications the commission sees, the limited staff applies the same rules to everyone. He said he was not in a position to answer whether the Holden Beach application not making it onto the LGC’s February agenda will impact the closing date at the end of this month. Folwell said it comes down to the transparency of taxpayer money. “When it comes to the transparency of local government and taxpayer money, it’s never a bad idea to measure five times and cut once,” he said.
Read more » click here


3. Discussion and Possible Action on the Beach Shuttle Pilot Project – Brunswick Transit System: Yvonne Hatcher, General Manager and Jean Atkinson, Marketing/Mobility Coordinator (Town Manager Hewett)
.   a. Local Share Certification

Agenda Packet – pages 14 – 23 / too large to include here
The Brunswick Transit System’s (BTS) proposal is to provide a shuttle service from the mainland to the island during the summertime as a pilot program.

We have been working with BTS through the Grand Strand Area Transportation Study (GSATS) for many months in order to investigate the potential for this service. In the Town’s 2019 Land Use Plan (LUP), it states the Town supports efforts to reduce traffic congestion on the island and along the road corridors leading to the bridge. The recommended action is to continue to work with NCDOT and GSATS to help improve traffic conditions both on the island and in surrounding areas as a result of a growing seasonal population and growing population on the mainland in areas near Holden Beach. While this service is not specifically listed in the LUP, staff believes there is a correlation between it and the objective.

Yvonne Hatcher, General Manager and Jean Atkinson, Marketing/Mobility Coordinator from BTS will be in attendance to provide details on the program.

Ride with Brunswick Transit System
Brunswick Transit System, Inc. (BTS) is a non-profit community transportation system that coordinates general public and human services transportation for the residents of Brunswick County. BTS was incorporated in 1989 and operates under the NC Nonprofit Corporation Act and the USC 501(c)(3) Internal Revenue Code. The transit system operates a fleet of 17 vehicles, including ADA equipped vehicles to assist persons with special needs.
For more information » click here 

Update –
David stated that one of the BOC’s objectives is to request help from Brunswick County to establish an off-island parking and trolly/bus service to the beach. BTS is proposing a beach shuttle pilot program. The total funding request is for $87,461.50 with the local share (50%) $43,730.75 picked up by the Town of Holden Beach. David was shocked, shocked I tell you, that the County was not contributing a dime. BTS is not supported by the County, it is funded from the Grand Strand Area Traffic Authority. The funding request covers the pilot project for one year (2023) operating from Good Friday through October 31, 2023, including extra hours on concert Sundays. Pat had numerous questions and concerns regarding how this would be implemented. She concluded that the project as proposed is not ready for prime time.

No decision was made – No action taken


I am not necessarily opposed to the proposal, but I am opposed to us paying for it. I question why the Town should be responsible to provide transportation to the island. Really don’t see that it is our role to increase the number of day trippers. Besides, instead of getting revenue for paid parking we incur a significant cost, it gets better, we also get more people coming here with the associated costs of providing services. It’s a half-baked idea, which is to say it is lacking adequate planning or forethought.

OIB rejects shuttle proposal
Ocean Isle Beach commissioners responded during a Feb. 8 meeting to a hot topic – shuttles. They also unanimously agreed they don’t want them. Commissioners acknowledged they had received many calls and emails about the agenda item, “Brunswick County Beach Shuttle Pilot Project,” along with a funding request
for the proposed service to run from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Ocean Isle Beach Mayor Debbie Smith read an email from a proper ty owner who served on Brunswick County’s Blueprint 2040 Committee. Smith said the resident, who couldn’t be at last week’s meeting, also requested that the town look into transportation. She said the Brunswick Transit Authority submitted a grant proposal for the presentation, which the town received as an official request and is why it was on the agenda. The board hadn’t vetted it yet. She said the town has to start planning for the increase in population after Brunswick County Blueprint 2040 predicted there will be 200,000 people in the county by 2040. Smith added the town has to star t making plans for the change or the change will
decide for them. She said the town will continue to look for accommodations for growth. Some actions commissioners are taking now, discussing later in the meeting, for example, are to expand the town fire department building. Smith said she doesn’t support shuttle service because the county should be supporting its need for county residents to be able to access a beach. She said there are many questions on this matter. Smith said she didn’t feel any board member was willing to support the shuttle service at this time. Commissioner Wayne Rowell said he received 150 emails, several texts and calls on his cell and home phones while he was away visiting his grandchildren this weekend in South Carolina. He said he does not support the item and there are too many questions that need to be answered before the town can move forward. “I’m not in favor of it at this time,” he said. “I’m not sure I’ll ever be in favor of it.” He said he is also aware parking and traffic issues are emerging and becoming bigger problems by the day. Commissioner Tom Athey said he doesn’t see the town being responsible to provide transportation to the island. He doesn’t see how this can benefit the town’s taxpayers for the town to be directly involved. Smith said one of the town’s priorities is to find where the town can expand on parking. Resident Ken Robson said his family moved here a year ago from Raleigh because they didn’t feel safe. He said he is completely against it. He said he has seen it before, but “things happen that you can’t ever imagine.” He said he and his family, sitting out in a hot tub one evening, don’t want to worry about their safety. “I’ve been run out of one of my homes,” he said. “I don’t want to be run out again.”
Resident Valerie Blanchard said she was against the second phase of Town Center Park. She said she doesn’t want the green space in the park to go away in favor of more playground equipment. She also opposed the beach shuttle. She said there isn’t a parking problem because there isn’t a parking shortage. She said people want free parking rather than having to pay $10 at the Ocean Isle Beach Pier. Resident Frank Hammon said even if the county pays for it, locals pay county taxes. He said busing was rarely used when he saw it previously in other communities. He offered a solution on adding parking by the old town hall. Resident Judy Horne asked if the county had considered where vehicles would be parked while they are shuttled onto the island. Smith and Rowell said that is one of their questions, too, that doesn’t have an answer yet. Smith said she thought it was premature to ask the county for funding for shuttles.
Read more » click here


4. Police Report – Chief Jeremy Dixon

Police PatchThe Police Department has completed the integration of Central Square, a computer aided automated dispatch system, with the County’s 911 system. The expense was approved by the Board in the last budget cycle, but they waited to the winter to implement the transition.


Crime Prevention 101 – Don’t make it easy for them
Don’t leave vehicles unlocked
Don’t leave valuables in your vehicles


Neighborhood Watch

      • Need to look out for each other and report any suspicious activity
      • Call 911 if you see or hear anything suspicious
      • Fill out Keep Check Request Form if you will be out of town
      • Submit completed Property Registration Form
      • Pickup copy of Protecting Your Home

Crime prevention 101 – Don’t make it easy for them
. a) Don’t leave vehicles unlocked
. b)
Don’t leave valuables in your vehicles
. c)
Lock your doors & windows – house, garage, storage areas and sheds

Keep Check Request Form
. a) Complete the form and return it to the Police Department
. b)
Officers check your property in your absence

Property Registration Form.
. a)
Record of items in your home that have a value of over $100
. b)
Complete the form and return it to the Police Department


5. Discussion and Possible Action on Items Necessary to Proceed with Paid Parking – Chief Dixon & Lieutenant Dilworth
.   a. Ordinance 22-02, An Ordinance Amending the Holden Beach Code of              .        Ordinances, Title VII: Traffic Code
  b.
Resolution 22-01, Resolution Amending the Holden Beach Fee Schedule
  c.
Services Agreement between the Town and Otto Connect

Agenda Packet – pages 24 – 54 / too large to include here
An updated ordinance, resolution and service agreement are in your packets. Updates were made based on Board’s direction at the last meeting.

RESOLUTION 22-01
RESOLUTION AMENDING THE HOLDEN BEACH FEE SCHEDULE

WHEREAS, the Holden Beach Parking Committee and Otto Connect have developed a recommended paid parking plan, to include a fee schedule  for the Town of Holden Beach; and

WHEREAS, at the December 12, 2021 Regular Meeting of the Board of Commissioners, the Board of Commissioners discussed the proposed plan and voted to amend the Parking Committee’s proposed paid parking  plan  to reflect that the paid parking period in Holden Beach will be established as  April 1st – October 31st; and

WHEREAS, the Board of Commissioners voted to move forward with the implementation of the proposed paid parking plan with the change made to  the paid parking period.

WHEREAS, the Holden Beach Fee Schedule needs to be updated to reflect the newly established paid parking fees.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board of Commissioners of the Town of Holden Beach, North Carolina does hereby  amend  the  fee  schedule  to reflect the attached paid parking fees.

Fee Schedule Amendment
Parking Permit Rates Per Vehicle

Per Hour Rate$3.00
Per Day Rate$15.00
Per Week Rate$60.00
Annual Rate (1 vehicle)$125.00
Annual Rate (2 vehicles)$250.00

Update –

Ordinance 22-02, Title VII: Traffic Code
Jeremy stated that Traffic Code Ordinance is a working document. They have made additional modifications to the document that were not included in the agenda packet. They reviewed and discussed the proposed changes and agreed by consensus to any changes. The Mayor reminded them that the document is only being considered, it will formally be adopted after review by counsel and submitted to the BOC’s for approval.
No decision was made – No action taken

Resolution 22-01, Fee Schedule
Last meeting the motion was to reduce the fee schedule, plus they added a single vehicle option. Lower rates were included in the new fee schedule. Motion was made to accept the fee schedule as written.
A decision was made – Approved unanimously

Otto Connect Services Agreement
The Board decided that Otto will monitor all streets not just the designated parking areas as originally proposed. After discussion, several changes were made, and the agreement will be adjusted accordingly. It will still need to be submitted to the BOC’s for approval.
No decision was made – No action taken

Holden Beach leaders aim to pass paid parking ordinance
Brunswick County beachgoers may have to bring some pocket change with them when they take a trip to Holden Beach this summer. Leaders in Holden Beach met Tuesday evening to discuss paid parking — and there are hopes that the effort could go into effect as soon as April 1. Commissioners talked about what areas could have paid parking spaces and cut down on the number of spaces on the list. At the end of last month’s meeting, the board had settled on hundreds of paid parking spaces across the town. After listening to concerns from homeowners about too many cars taking away from the beach town’s charm, commissioners cut that number down to about 600. “We have no certain number of parking spaces — that’s what we’re trying to go through and identify and actually designate with the proper signage,” said Mayor Alan Holden. “There are some spaces that are being used that probably shouldn’t be where people just pull up and park.” Holden Beach Property Owners Association president Tom Myers said homeowners have had issues with people parking in their driveways and their yards in order to go to the beach. Another problem is on the east of the town just off Ocean Boulevard. It’s a one-way street that’s usually packed in the heat of the summer causing concern about first responders’ ability to get to the scene of an emergency. Homeowners also expressed concern about damage to the dunes. That’s why leaders are updating the ordinance as part of this parking overhaul: some areas you may have parked in the past may become no-parking zones. “They just don’t want people parking in their yard, using their walkway, using their shower, using their pool, using facilities,” said Myers. “Combined with that is the overall concern that the beach is going to get so crowded that we’ll lose the character of the island, which is a family beach, not crowded, laid back.” Also addressed at Tuesday’s meeting: the price for a parking space. Leaders dropped the proposed price from $4/hr. to $3/hr. “Until it’s finalized, everything is uncertain,” said Mayor Holden as he explained what the cost covers. “The provider of the service has a minimum amount that the company has to have; then, the overhead of that, the credit card expense and all that — the totals add up and looks like to be somewhere in that [zone].” There are discounts for those that use a pass. Proposed prices for the long-term passes include $15 for a day, $60 to stay a week and an annual pass for one vehicle at $125 or $250 for two. No decisions were made Tuesday night as commissioners are still looking at the options. They’ll discuss the issue again at the next meeting. Still, leaders hope to put paid parking in effect as soon as April 1. That may be easier said than done, though, since leaders first must pass the updated ordinance and then install the meters. “We can see that it’s not a perfect plan,” said Myers. “We’ve got to try something, and I think they’re coming around to accepting this is a good first step and we’ll see where it goes from here and we’ll see if — hopefully — all the issues can be resolved as we go through it.”
Read more » click here

No more free parking at Holden Beach?
More Brunswick County towns consider the option
Keith Simmons, a Fayetteville resident, started coming to Brunswick County beaches when he was just a kid. Now, 30 years later, he’s vacationed everywhere in the county with his own family, from Sunset Beach to Oak Island. “I’d say it’s going to stick as a family tradition,” Simmons said. “We love the atmosphere and family focus.” The Simmons’s’ story is just one of many families throughout the years who fell in love with the area and keep coming back. But now with more and more visitors and residents coming to Brunswick county beach towns each year, they are looking for ways to offset the increasing costs of accommodating tourism. One-way municipalities are looking to offset those costs is through paid parking. Southport Mayor Joseph Hatem said increased development and tourism put a strain on local infrastructure and services, such as police, trash, sewer, and water. Even with the pandemic and the city not hosting its Fourth of July celebration last year, Southport saw one of its best summers for tourism last year. “It’s a big boon for our community, and for the businesses that are here, and people make memories. That’s something you can’t put a price tag on,” Hatem said. “But when you have more people down here, you’re going to have more use of every infrastructure use and it does take its toll.” Southport has tasked city staff with looking into a paid parking plan’s pros and cons, but there are no immediate plans for implementation. Holden Beach will be the first town to introduce what may become an inevitability for beach towns in the county. After Holden Beach residents pushed back against initial paid parking proposals, commissioners approved a fee schedule on Tuesday for paid parking that will be implemented this year. From April 1 to Oct. 31 between 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., permits will be required to park in Holden Beach, with about 500 parking spaces available. People could pay for spaces for $3 per hour, $15 per day, $60 per week, or $125 per year. Those who spend $125 on parking cumulatively will be credited with an annual permit. The plan includes parking prohibitions on right-of-way parking between 2 a.m. and 5 a.m., except at the wildlife boat ramp and by the Jordan Blvd gazebo, where people fish in the early morning. “This is sort of a compromise for this year to get us through so we can figure out how to do it right,” Commissioner Pat Kwiatkowski said. “It lets us try and figure out how we can constrain right-of-way parking in the next year, as our residents want.” The proposal is estimated to net the town just over $200,000 in revenue each year. While the final details of the plan were ironed out at their last meeting, the town will have a final vote on March 8. Holden Beach Property Owners Association president Tom Myers said he expects most residents will now support the plan. “The bottom line is there’s still some things that people aren’t happy about but the big ones — the total number and having them in locations where there was no public access — those items have been addressed,” Myers said. For Holden Beach, the paid parking plans have been pushed as part of the town’s attempt to purchase the Holden Beach Fishing Pier. Part of the parking revenue is proposed to be used to pay down the debt obligations from the purchase. But even without that extra incentive, other municipalities could soon explore the option. In Ocean Isle Beach, Mayor Debbie Smith said though parking isn’t an issue yet, with the growth in Brunswick County expected to continue rapidly develop, town officials are monitoring the need. “We’re not at a loss of parking most days yet and we’ve been really dedicated over the years to increasing as much public parking as we could afford to do and have space to do,” Smith said. The town has public parking, and a private lot owner also provides about 200 paid parking spaces. Smith said the town has had preliminary discussions on expanding parking options but aren’t ready to move forward. “We just continue to try to stay abreast of all options as Brunswick County grows and we plan for the future,” she said. The Ocean Isle Beach Board of Commissioners rejected an N.C. Department of Transportation pilot project that would use a shuttle service to transport tourists onto the beach. Town officials denied the project citing costs to taxpayers that would benefit non-residents. Both Southport and Holden Beach were also included in the shuttle service proposed pilot project but have yet to vote on joining. One consideration leader are weighing when it comes to long-term parking options is how it will affect the feel of the towns. Hatem said he opposes the idea of paid parking in Southport as it would clash with the “quaint village atmosphere.” “I just feel like Southport is unique and can continue to be unique and there may be other ways that we can monetize tourism,” he said. But in Holden Beach, Myers said paid parking could contribute to keeping the small town, family-friendly feel of the beach by creating a roadblock to potential overcrowding. “We just can’t provide parking for everybody that wants to come to the beach,” Myers said. “It’ll change the character of the beach to have that many people on the beach, on all the side streets, parking all over the place. Plus, just the bodies and tents and cabanas on the beach.”
Read more » click here


6. Discussion and Possible Action on the Parks & Recreation Advisory Board’s Recommendations for 796 Ocean Boulevard West – Assistant Town Manager Ferguson

Agenda Packet – pages 55 – 79 / too large to include here
The BOC tasked the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board (PRAB) with compiling recommendations for the use of 796 Ocean Boulevard West. The PRAB held regular meetings, and one special meeting with town staff, with its recommendations included in your agenda packet. Chair John McEntire is  in attendance to go over the board’s report with you this evening.

Possible Actions and Recommendation
Option 1: Use of the facility as is with minimal renovation
Option 2: A renovated facility like the Ocean Isle Community Center
Option 3: A completely new structure
Option 4: Remove structure and create parking spaces.
Option 5: Sell The Property

Summary
The PRAB has determined that The Property at 796 OBW is optimally located to serve as a community center recreational facility as envisioned in the Parks and Recreation Master Plan.

The various options were evaluated and ranked as to which best addressed the expressed goals of the BOC and the Parks and Recreation Master Plan. Preferences were as follows:

Option 4: Demo and restrooms, parking
Option 2: Renovation
Option 3: Completely new structure
Option 5: Sell
Option 1: Use as is

Previously reported – September 2019
Ordinance 19-15, The Revenues and Appropriations Ordinance (#3)

    • Provide funds for purchase of property at 796 OBW – approved $349,000
    • A significant portion of the cost of acquiring this property is offset by us no longer needing to do additional acoustical engineering.

Previously reported – January 2020
We need to determine what we will do with the building. The first step is deciding how you want to use the property.

Pat’s position is that we need to keep the building because of noise abatement issues. Board wanted to hand this off to the Parks & Recreation Committee for them to develop some potential uses.

Basically, we have two options:
1) Convert the house into some undetermined community facility
2) Sell and move the house off the property

Poor optics: Are we to understand that they didn’t have a plan when we purchased this property? It was my understanding that the building was going to be removed creating more space between the sewer station and residential properties. Property is not zoned commercial so for starters getting it changed from a residential zone to a commercial zone will take both time and money. Besides that, we would have a huge expense to convert the house into a public facility, in order to comply with Americans with Disabilities Act, we will have ongoing expenses for housekeeping, maintenance, utilities and security issues. Let’s cut our losses and sell the house and have it moved off the property.

Previously reported – February 2020
Agenda Packet –
Directive to:
Parks and Recreation Board

Issue and Action Requested:
The Town purchased 796 OBW, the property next to Sewer Pump Station 3, primarily as a solution for decibel concerns due to proximity. Various potential uses for the property were discussed, including possibilities for public use. It was agreed to defer any decision on the best use of the building to 2020, when a proper plan of action would be determined. With potential public uses of the building in the mix, Parks and Rec is appropriate to lead this effort. Parks and Rec is asked to seek input and recommend possible uses for 796 OBW.

Background and Potential Implications:
When the Town purchased 796 OBW, a number of possible uses for the building were identified as potentially viable, some involving staff use and some public use. Instead of exploring costs for all possibilities, it was decided to defer further evaluation until 2020, when input could be sought and a “short list” of possible uses defined before examining re-modelling and re-zoning implications. Without a pre-screen, internal time and money could be wasted on evaluating facility uses that are not of interest to either staff or our property owners or simply not possible given the nature of the location and/or structure.

Charge Questions:
1) What uses do our residents and property owners envision and prefer?
2)
What uses does Town staff envision and prefer?
3)
Does proximity of the pumping station impact the viability of the envisioned use?
4)
Does proximity to neighboring properties impact the viability of the envisioned use?
5)
Is parking going to be adequate for the envisioned use?
6)
What other possible upsides or downsides might be associated with the envisioned use?
7)
Will it be possible to request grant money to help defer remodeling and/or maintenance costs for the envisioned use?

Proposed Deadline:
September 2020 BOCM

Most of the discussion was over what the next step should be. It can be characterized as: which comes first the chicken or the egg? The choice between sending it to Parks & Rec Board or sending it to Timbo in Planning & Inspections Department. Between us, this is the same exact discussion we had last month but here we are again. By sending it to the Planning Department first the thinking is that it will help to narrow down the parameters of what we can do there. Once we know what we can do then we can discuss what we would prefer to do. Consensus was to send it to Timbo now and hold off on tasking Parks & Rec Board.

A decision was made – Approved (4-1)
Gerald objected to even asking Timbo because he only sees us incurring big expenses by utilizing the building structure.

Tax records has the building value at $186,710, 50% rule means most you can spend renovating is $93,355

Previously reported – September 2020
We still have no game plan for what we will do with this property that was purchased one (1) year ago.

Previously reported – October 2020
Concerns were expressed about maintenance issues and our insurance liability. Commissioner Murdock felt we need to decide what we are going to do with this property long-term. Timbo offered to do inspection to confirm that it is habitable and reasonably safe. Approved contingent upon Town Inspector favorable report at which time the Town Manager can lease the property to Town employee for $700 per month.
A decision was made – Approved unanimously

The Parks & Rec Master Plan lists a number of options for this facility. The Board is requesting that the Parks & Rec committee prioritizes them and recommend what they envision the building be used for.

They would like a response from the committee by the BOC’s scheduled February meeting.
A decision was made – Approved unanimously

Previously reported – November 2021
Agenda Packet – page 33 – 34
In the new Parks and Recreation Master Plan potential use of 796 OBW as a community recreation resource is highlighted (page 38) with several options for community use, and a proposed budget with no specifics is given (150K in 23/24). In addition, when the property was purchased, the board and staff brainstormed possible uses.

It would be beneficial for the Board to have input from the Parks and Rec Committee on how they envision using 796 OBW in advance of our budgeting for FY 22/23. A list of the top 2 or 3 more complete. Use descriptions with an estimated time needed to upgrade/renovate and estimated total costs for each by the February 2022 BOCM would be helpful to the Board.

THB Parks & Recreation Master Plan / 796 Ocean Boulevard

      • Consider reuse of this structure as a community recreation resource
      • Bathhouse (restrooms/showers)
      • Classroom or exhibit space
      • Rentable meeting space (with kitchen)
      • Improve parking layout
      • Improve accessibility ADA

Board agreed to terminating lease agreement so they can move forward with plans for the community to utilize the property.
A decision was made – Approved unanimously

Previously reported – January 2021
This memo proposes the BOC’s terminate the lease with 796 Ocean Boulevard West tenant effective 28 February 2022 and to direct the Town Manager to officially notify the tenant accordingly.

The term for the lease agreement between the tenant and Town for the residence at 796 Ocean Boulevard West was for six months, with an automatic month-to-month renewal option after completion of the initial term. The initial term ended on 1 May 2021.

With numerous conversations, planning and pending decisions/activities associated with 796 Ocean Boulevard West, it is recommended that the Town give the tenant notice of termination in order to facilitate an orderly progression of outcomes for the property.

Update –
PRAB Chair John McEntire made the presentation. He addressed the issues as the tasker required them to do. He went through the process that they took and briefly reviewed all considerations. They focused on the potential intended use of the property. They identified and explored several options. The PRAB determined that the property is optimally located to serve as a community center recreational facility as envisioned in the Parks and Recreation Master Plan.

No decision was made – No action taken


I would be concerned with the following:

 

      • another project that would be at a considerable cost to the community
      • renovations far exceed the allowed amount, noncompliance with 50% rule
      • commercial use in residential area
         * same issue as the Beach Club Houses
      • not having adequate parking there
        * that includes what is in the current proposed parking plan


7. Discussion and Possible Approval of Contract Between the Town and Martin Starnes and Associates for Audit Services for Fiscal Year 2021 – 2022 – Town Manager Hewett

Agenda Packet – pages 80 – 100 / too large to include here
At the December Board of Commissioners’ meeting, the Board received the Audit Committee’s recommendation that the Town select Martin Starnes as the firm to conduct the audit for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2022. Based on the recommendation, the Board directed development of the annual audit contract with Martin Starnes and Associations for consideration. Subsequent to that direction by the Board the NC Local Government Commission has provided templates which the proposed contract has been developed in accordance with.

Attached (Attachment l) are the contract documents necessary to move forward with the selection of Martin Starnes and Associates.

Suggested Motion: Approve the fiscal year ending 30 June 2022 audit contract with Martin Starnes.

Previously reported – December 2021
Audit Committee recommends that we retain audit firm Martin Starnes for another year and directed the Town Manager to finalize the contract at the appropriate time
A decision was made – Approved unanimously

Update –
It’s time for the Board to redo the audit contract which is a standard Local Government Commission contract. The motion was to accept the proposed contract. Martin Starnes was awarded the $25,150 contract for the third year.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


8. Discussion and Possible Action on Defining Board of Commissioners’ Objectives for Fiscal Year 2022 – 2023 – Commissioner Kwiatkowski

Agenda Packet – page 101
BOC Objectives for Fiscal Year 2021/2022

Priorities
18 Ensure funding for hurricane related FEMA projects and proceed with necessary steps  for target commencement of sand on beach in Fall 2021(TM)
17 Ensure contracting, budgeting and funding for sewer lift station 2 to allow completion in 2022 (TM)
17 Make decision on and implement new THB development fees (BOC & TM)
17 Ensure funding for 2022 DOT bike lane project, including any grant money (TM)
17 Address increasing stormwater issues with a study followed by appropriate actions    for recurring problem areas along Ocean Boulevard (in advance of bike lane project} (TM)
17 Request help from Brunswick County for a second water tower (after completing a needs assessment) (TM)
17 Ensure advocacy resources are given to limit expansion of the IHA (TM)
16 Support and participate in beach and inlet related advocacy efforts at local, state, and federal level (TM)

a. Become more involved in and lead where possible regional advocacy groups and committees
b.
Develop advocacy strategy, plan and material for county and state efforts and implement the plan
c.
Review and as appropriate amend directions to Poyner Spruill for federal advocacy; ensure funds are designated for the three-year Corps study (1.5 million total)
d.
Support and participate in advocacy efforts at any level as appropriate
e.
Greater involvement in coastal community advocacy

16 Ensure definition and implementation of new water rates for January 2022 (TM)
16 Determine if paid parking is economically viable; if so, implement paid parking (BOC & TM)
15 Oversee progress on internal control plan for fiscal year 2021/2022 completion (TM)
14 Ensure adequate resources to undertake enforcement compliance objectives decided by the Board (Increase enforcement of ordinances) (BOC & TM}
14 Request help from Brunswick County to establish an off-island parking and trolly/bus service to the beach 100 days or more a year (TM)
14 Purchase all or a portion of Holden Beach Pier (BOC & TM)
14 Maintain an up-to-date strategy to protect the beach and dune system and ensure adequate budget for implementation of plans, including soil sampling and plant modification where appropriate (TM)

Evergreens (mostly financial)
18 Balance the budget while preserving the minimum fund balance as defined by the Board; Balance the budget without raising taxes
18 Ensure the Town meets or exceeds annual financial budget goals
18 Work together for the good of Holden Beach
17 Raise revenues
17 Continue to support LWI access to ocean
16 Ensure the Town achieves an unmodified opinion rating on annual fiscal audit and     addresses noted deficiencies
16 Ensure qualified resources are available to perform audit and accounting   procedures to ensure there are no material deficiencies noted in the annual fiscal audit
14 Ensure an updated capital project budget sheet is included in final budget documents

Update –
They plan to use the same procedure that they have used in the past. David recommended that they need to schedule a Budget Workshop to address and review their  objectives.

No decision was made – No action taken


9. Town Manager’s Report

Click here to view footage of the project.

Beach Nourishment Project
The nourishment project is about a third of the way there. It covers an area that is 4.5 miles long, with 1.5 million cyds of sand. Currently we only have one dredger on site due to a repair issue.

Previously reported – January 2022
Initiated beach nourishment project on January 7th

Previously reported – December 2021
We were able to mate two (2) projects, Central Reach and Eastern Reach areas. This is a continuous project of over five (5) miles, from 262 OBE through 871 OBW. It will cover an area that is over five (5) miles long, eight (8) feet high, and one hundred (100) feet wide.

Wetlands
They have ordered an engineer to delineate the wetland areas, work is to be completed in the next two (2) weeks

Previously reported – January 2022
They agreed that they will need to get our plans to the DOT for their approval. Also, it will require a civil engineer to delineate the wetland area and do any required permitting. Brian made a motion that we delineate all town property bordering marsh areas that is included in the parking plan.

In Case You Missed It –


Run Holden Beach

January
29th
Holden Beach

.

Event was canceled due to weather / Rescheduled  to October 1st


 

THB officially established on February 14, 1969
Celebrating our 53rd Anniversary
.


National Flood Insurance Program: Reauthorization
Congress must periodically renew the NFIP’s statutory authority to operate. On February 18, 2022, the President signed legislation passed by Congress that extends the National Flood Insurance Program’s (NFIP’s) authorization to March 11, 2022.


Utility Department Billing
Effective January 1, 2022, Brunswick County will increase the Town’s water wholesale rate by 82%. This increase is to cover the cost of increased plant capacity and to add a low-pressure reverse osmosis treatment system. The Town of Holden Beach will also increase their rates on January 1st to reflect the increased cost to them.


Upcoming Events –

NA


10. Mayor’s Comments

From the Mayor’s Desk –
(02/07/22)

Good News!

Our beach management program continues to be proving its success!

Look at the west end of Oak Island as erosion continues to attack the homes there.

Their west end sand drifts into the Lockwood Folly Inlet causing navigation issues to be more complicated.


The sidecaster dredge “Merritt” recently spent several days clearing the channel leading to the ocean through the Lockwood Folly Inlet. The “Merritt” is owned and operated by the US Army Corps of Engineers. The inlet is open to boat traffic.

The Town of Holden Beach contracted with Weeks Marine to place approximately 1,500,000 cubic yards of high-quality beach sand on our oceanfront. The placement will begin at Blockade Runner and continue westward near the 800 block of Ocean Boulevard West. This is a distance of approximately four and a half miles. Completion should be in March.

The project is separate from the upcoming project of placing sand from the Lockwood Folly Inlet to Blockade Runner. This project is commonly referred to as the “widener project”. The project will be completed before Easter.


The west end of Holden Beach has grown over the recent decades. However, recently some loss of dunes has taken place. The west side of the Shallotte Inlet, which is the east end of Ocean Isle Beach, has been eroding.


Ocean Isle is building a terminal groin on their east end that is proving to be beyond successful. It is trapping drift sand and covering itself as fast as it can be built.

This picture shows the current status of the project.

 


 The terminal groin at the southern end of Bald Head Island at the Cape Fear River was completed and has since covered itself up capturing the drift sand there.

The then seated Board of Commissioners’ of Holden Beach abandoned the Holden Beach terminal groin at the Lockwood Folly Inlet back in 2018 in a controversial decision.

The Town of Holden Beach continues to monitor the Ocean Isle terminal groin relative to the impact on the Holden Beach west end.


Happy Birthday to the Town of Holden Beach!!! This Monday, Valentine’s Day, February 14, 2022, Holden Beach will be 53 years old. Come celebrate this “happy day” at the picnic shelter by the water tank overlooking the waterway at 12:00 noon. This will be a time of good food and open informal discussion with me, your mayor. If you plan to attend, please register before the end of the day of February 10th. Call (910) 842-6488 to register.

Thanks for being a part of this place we all love! 


Commissioner responds to mayor on terminal groin
On Feb. 7, the town of Holden Beach issued “From the Mayor’s Desk” that starts with: “Good News! Our beach management program continues to be proving its success!” How nice you think … a sand project update. But read further. The message is actually a blatant attempt to resurrect the debate on a Holden Beach terminal groin. “Ocean Isle is building a terminal groin on their east end that is proving to be beyond successful. It is trapping drift sand and covering itself as fast as it can be built. The terminal groin at the southern end of Bald Head Island at the Cape Fear River was completed and has since covered itself up capturing the drift sand there.” And then: “The then-seated Board of Commissioners of Holden Beach abandoned the Holden Beach terminal groin at the Lockwood Folly Inlet back in 2018 in a controversial decision.” As the sole remaining seated commissioner who was involved in the 2018 decision to terminate the project study (we did not “abandon” a groin), I feel compelled to speak both to inform new property owners who may be unaware of the past and remind others of how the board came to its decision, a decision supported by the majority of our community. The 2018 BOC never doubted that a groin would trap sand for the east end. Our concerns were what would happen to the westward strand (there are many historic examples of negative impacts of hardened structures on downstream beaches), as well as the estimated $33 million cost over 30 years. Plus, if our groin would have a negative impact on the west end of Oak Island, we would be responsible for “making good.” Holden Beach has a proven program using sand from the Corps scheduled dredging that keeps our east end stable at a lower cost than building and servicing a groin. Why enter into an engineered experimental solution when a less expensive, proven alternative exists? Perhaps the mayor doesn’t recall the board members’ and public’s agreement on the “technical” concerns and the relative costs. Nevertheless, they are the reasons why the 2018 BOC unanimously voted to stop the Corps study that was in progress before any more time or money was needlessly spent.
Pat Kwiatkowski is a Holden Beach commissioner.
Read more »
click here NA
Beacon



Controversy – strong disagreement about something among a large group of people

Controversial? The Mayor is being disingenuous. Much of the public, the HBPOA, and all of the members of the BOC’s opposed building a terminal groin. I urge you to check out the Terminal Groin Project post to review the timeline of events,  and what happened then that got the Board to the point of pulling the plug on the terminal groin project.


11. Executive Session Pursuant to North Carolina General Statute 143-318.11(A)(5), To Instruct the Staff or Agent Concerning the Negotiation of the Price and Terms of Contracts Concerning the Acquisition of Real Properties – Commissioner Murdock

Motion was made to approve pier property contract extension with an additional $10,000 in earnest money

A decision was made – Approved unanimously

This is the list of properties currently being considered for acquisition by the Town
Seven (7) pier properties currently under contract
Block Q
Parcels 232NH002, 232NH003, 232NB014, 232NB015, 232NB021, 232NB022

To View Parcels » click here

Brunswick County – Basic Search
Select Parcel Number
Enter Parcel Number
Click Owner Name
Click View Map for this Parcel


General Comments – .



BOC’s Meeting

The Board of Commissioners’ next Regular Meeting is scheduled on the third second Tuesday of the month, March 8th
.


Meeting Agenda
Yet another marathon session, the meeting ran for over three (3) hours


.
A little surprised that
they still have not scheduled any
Budget Meetings

 



We should be able to get the audio right on the
Facebook livestream. It is unacceptable that the audio is so poor. The last two meetings there have been portions with no sound at all. Don’t even get me started on people speaking that are not using a microphone at all. The Town needs to hire an audio-visual person to get this corrected.



Hurricane #1 - CR

 

Hurricane Season
For more information » click here

Be prepared – have a plan!

 


Another ‘above-average’ hurricane season expected in 2022
This news follows two-consecutive years of higher-than-average named storms.
Indicators are pointing to a higher-than-average hurricane season for 2022, according to an early forecast from the Colorado State University (CSU) Tropical Meteorology Project. Seasons with above-average activity typically have 13-16 named storms, 6-8 hurricanes and 2-3 major hurricanes, the researchers reported. This year’s storm period has a 40% chance that ocean temperatures in the North Atlantic will be above average, which can lead to a more intense hurricane season, according to CSU researchers.Further, no El Nino will occur this year. When Pacific waters are warmed by El Nino there tend to be fewer hurricanes in the Atlantic, CSU research indicated. Additionally, El Nino generates increased vertical wind shear, which can further reduce hurricane activity in the Atlantic. La Nina has the opposite effect. The 2022 forecast comes on the heels of the third most active hurricane season on record for named storms, according to the Insurance Information Institute (Triple-I). The 2021 season had 21 named storms, including seven hurricanes. The period saw four major hurricanes (category 3-5) and trailed only 2020 (30 named storms) and 2005 (28 named storms). “As the nation’s financial first responders, insurers helped their customers recover economically from the impacts of another very active hurricane season in 2021,” Triple-I CEO Sean Kevelighan said in a release. “The widespread damage the United States experienced across many regions highlighted the importance of being financially protected from catastrophic losses and that includes having adequate levels of property insurance and flood coverage. In fact, we not only saw historic levels of flooding in coastal areas this year but throughout inland communities, as well.” Hurricane Ida was the most damaging of the past season, which was projected to be in the top five of most costly tropical storms on record, in terms of insureds’ losses, according to Triple-I. Widespread wind and flood damage in the mid-Atlantic and Northeast U.S. were major drivers of storm-related losses. The CSU Tropical Meteorology Project will release its first formal 2022 hurricane season forecast on April 7, 2022.
Read more » click here


No matter what a storm outlook is for a given year,
vigilance and preparedness is urged.


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