05 – News & Views

Lou’s Views
News & Views / May Edition


Calendar of Events –


4th of July Southport - CR 190
N.C. 4th of July Festival

July 4th
Southport, NC

.
The patriotic spirit of America is alive and well in the City of Southport. For over 200 years this small maritime community has celebrated our nation’s independence in a big way. Incorporated as the N.C. 4th of July Festival in 1972 the festival committee strives to keep the focus of the festival on honoring our nation’s birthday with a little fun thrown in.

For more information » click here



Battleship Blast
4th of July Celebration
July 4th
Wilmington, NC

 

Annual 4th of July Celebration at Riverfront Park in downtown Wilmington. Featured entertainment will perform from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM, followed by fireworks at 9:05 PM launched from a barge in the Cape Fear River adjacent to the USS North Carolina Battleship. The only place you need to be this holiday is downtown Wilmington for the best view of fireworks.
For more information » click here


Events
TDA - logo
Discover a wide range of things to do in the Brunswick Islands for an experience that goes beyond the beach.
For more information » click here


Calendar of Events Island –


Concerts on the Coast Series
The Town’s summer concert series calendar has been released! Live performances featuring local musical groups are held at the pavilion on Sunday evenings from late May to early September.The concerts are free of charge.
For more information
» click here



Tide Dyed Program
This event is located at the Holden Beach Pavilion. Tie dye your own shirts; the cost is just $7 per shirt. It takes place between 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. every Tuesday during the summer.
(June 14th through August 9th)


Turtle Talk
Two programs both are held every Wednesday during the summer at Town Hall. Children’s Turtle Time is at 4:00 p.m. with crafts, stories and activities for children ages 3 – 6. All children must be accompanied by an adult. Turtle Talk is an educational program at 7:00 p.m. for everyone else. (Beginning June 29th)


Parks & Recreation / Programs & Events
For more information » click here


Reminders –



Pets on the Beach Strand
Pets – Chapter 90 / Animals / 90.20
From May 20th through September 10th it is unlawful to have any pet on the beach strand during the hours of 9:00am through 5:00pm.

 



Solid Waste Pick-Up Schedule

GFL Environmental change in service, trash pickup will be twice a week. Starting the Saturday before Memorial Day through the Saturday after Labor Day: Pick-up is every Tuesday and Saturday from May 29th through September 25th.

Please note:
. • Trash carts must be at the street by 6:00 a.m. on the pickup day
. • BAG the trash before putting it in the cart
. • Carts will be rolled back to the front of the house


Solid Waste Pick-up Schedule –
starting Saturday before Memorial Day twice a week

Recycling
after Memorial Day weekly pick-up


. .

A Second Helping
Program to collect food Saturday mornings (7:00am to 12:00pm) during the summer at the Beach Mart on the Causeway.

.


.
1) Eighteenth year of the program
. 2) Food collections have now exceeded 273,000 pounds
. 3)
Collections will begin on May 28th and run through September 10th
. 4) Food is distributed to the needy in Brunswick County
For more information » click here

Hunger exists everywhere in this country; join them in the fight to help end hunger in Brunswick County. Cash donations are gratefully accepted. One hundred percent (100%) of these cash donations are used to buy more food. You can be assured that the money will be very well spent.

Mail Donations to:
A Second Helping % Douglas Cottrell
2939 Alan Trail
Supply, NC 28462

Website:
http://www.secondhelping.us


Hurricane Vehicle Decals
Property owners will be provided with four (4) decals which will be included in their water bills. It is important that you place your decals in your vehicle or in a safe place. A $10 fee will be assessed to anyone who needs to obtain either additional or replacement decals. Decals will not be issued in the 24-hour period before an anticipated order of evacuation.

The decals are your passes to get back onto the island to check your property in the event that an emergency would necessitate restricting access to the island. Decals must be displayed in the driver side lower left-hand corner of the windshield, where they are not obstructed by any other items. Officials must be able to clearly read the decal from outside the vehicle.

Property owners without a valid decal will not be allowed on the island during restricted access. No other method of identification is accepted in an emergency situation. Click here to visit the Town website to find out more information regarding decals and emergency situations.


Yard Waste Service
Yard debris pick-up will be provided twice a month on the second and fourth Fridays during the months of April, and May. Please have yard waste placed at the street for pick-up on Thursday night. The first pickup of the season was on March 11th. No pick-ups will be made on vacant lots or construction sites.

Debris must be placed in a biodegradable bag or bundled in a length not to exceed five (5) feet and fifty (50) pounds. Each residence is allowed a total of ten (10) items, which can include a combination of bundles of brush and limbs meeting the required length and weight and/ or biodegradable bags with grass clippings, leaves, etc.



Bird Nesting Area

NC Wildlife Commission has posted signs that say – Bird Nesting Area / Please don’t disturb. The signs are posted on the west end beach strand around 1307 OBW.


People and dogs are supposed to stay out of the area from April through November

. 1) It’s a Plover nesting area
. 2) Allows migrating birds a place to land and rest without being disturbed


Mosquito Control
Current EPA protocol is that spraying is complaint driven
The Town is unable to just spray as they had in the past
. 1)
Complaint based
. 2)
Citizen request
. 3)
Proactively monitor hot spots

They recommend that you get rid of any standing water on your property that you can
Urged everyone to call Town Hall if they have mosquito issues so that they can spray

Spraying is complaint based, so keep the calls coming!


Curbside Recycling
GFL Environmental is now offering curbside recycling for Town properties that desire to participate in the service. The service cost is $86.37 annually paid in advance to the Town of Holden Beach and consists of a ninety-six (96) gallon cart that is emptied every other week.
Curbside Recycling Application » click here
Curbside Recycling Calendar » click here

Recycling renewal form was sent, you should have gotten e-mail letter already



Trash Can Requirements – Rental Properties
GFL Environmental – trash can requirements
Ordinance 07-13, Section 50.08

Rental properties have specific number of trash cans based on number of bedrooms.

* One extra trash can per every 2 bedrooms.

.
§ 50.08 RENTAL HOMES.

(A) Rental homes, as defined in Chapter 157, that are rented as part of the summer rental season, are subject to high numbers of guests, resulting in abnormally large volumes of trash. This type of occupancy use presents a significantly higher impact than homes not used for summer rentals. In interest of public health and sanitation and environmental concerns, all rental home shall have a minimum of one trash can per two bedrooms. Homes with an odd number of bedrooms shall round up (for examples one to two bedrooms – one trash can; three to four bedrooms – two trash cans; five – six bedrooms – three trash cans, and the like).


Building Numbers
Ocean front homes are required to have house numbers visible from the beach strand.
Please call Planning and Inspections Department at 910.842.6080 with any questions.

§157.087 BUILDING NUMBERS.

(A) The correct street number shall be clearly visible from the street on all buildings. Numbers shall be block letters, not script, and of a color clearly in contrast with that of the building and shall be a minimum of six inches in height.

(B) Beach front buildings will also have clearly visible house numbers from the strand side meeting the above criteria on size, contrast, etc. Placement shall be on vertical column supporting deck(s) or deck roof on the primary structure. For buildings with a setback of over 300 feet from the first dune line, a vertical post shall be erected aside the walkway with house numbers affixed. In all cases the numbers must be clearly visible from the strand. Other placements may be acceptable with approval of the Building Inspector.



BOC’s Meeting
The Board of Commissioners’ next Regular Meeting is scheduled on the third Tuesday of the month, June 21st
.


News from Town of Holden Beach
The town sends out emails of events, news, agendas, notifications and emergency information. If you would like to be added to their mailing list, please go to their web site to complete your subscription to the Holden Beach E-Newsletter.
For more information » click here


Volunteers needed
The Town is always looking for people to volunteer for their various boards and committees. If you are interested in serving, please fill out a resume form and submit it to heather@hbtownhall.com.


Elevator - CRElevators
Most states mandate that elevator systems be tested and inspected annually. Currently the state of North Carolina does not require annual inspections to be performed on all elevator systems. The use of unsafe and defective lifting devices imposes a substantial probability of serious and preventable injury to your family and guests. It is in the owner’s best interest to minimize injuries and liability by scheduling an annual safety inspection to ensure the safe operation of their elevator system.


Waupaca Elevator Recalls to Inspect Elevators Due to Injury Hazard

Hazard:
The elevator cab can fall unexpectedly to the bottom of the elevator shaft and abruptly stop, posing an injury hazard to consumers in the elevator cab.

Consumer Contact:
Waupaca Elevator toll-free at 833-850-7981 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. CT Monday through Friday, e-mail at info@WaupacaElevator.com or online at www.WaupacaElevator.com and click on Recall Information for more information.


Library
If you need something to keep you busy in this colder weather, make sure to visit the island library. The library is in the upstairs of Holden Beach Town Hall. All the books were donated. Patrons of the library don’t have to check out a book; they are on the honor system to return it.



Neighborhood Watch –

Need to look out for each other
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


Upon Further Review –


  • Bike Lane
    Property owners along Ocean Boulevard were sent a CAMA notice from the DOT
    .
    Key takeaways:
      • Add 7’ asphalt to the south side of existing pavement
      • Add 3’ asphalt to the north side of existing pavement
      • Recenter the travel lanes
      • Create two (2) five (5) foot bike lanes on either side of the road

DOT informed us the cost of the has significantly increased by almost 30%
The good news is that our portion is only an additional $23,000 so far

Bike Lane Letters (04/21/22)
Town staff contacted the Department of Transportation after numerous homeowners reached out to us concerned that they had not received a letter with information on the upcoming bike lane/paving project. We were advised that only those property owners whose property is adjacent to the proposed bike lane construction where that construction intersects the Ocean Erodible Area of Environmental Concern (jurisdiction of NC Division of Coastal Management) have been sent the certified letter/attachments. This is only a small portion of the project area (approximately 150 properties) so don’t be concerned if you did not receive a letter. Those property owners that have received the certified letter/attachments can follow the instructions in the letter if they would like to contact someone about the project.

Previously reported – March 2021
David provided the Board with a memo summarizing the information that he gathered since the last meeting. That memo was not included in the agenda packet. He reviewed the process, timeline, and financing. DOT informed him that if we are interested that we need to stay engaged with them. The public has said that they are in favor of having bike lanes. The project is an improvement worth the expenditure especially if we can get help with the funding through grants. They decided to give the project a green light and have David work to keep moving the project forward.

Previously reported – February 2021
Engineer’s estimate for bike lanes are as follows:
Ocean Boulevard West / 5.00 miles / @$1,208,941
Ocean Boulevard East / 1.15 miles / @$403,972

NCDOT now has adequately funding so the resurfacing program for OBW which is scheduled for the spring of 2022. Bike lanes are being proposed on both sides of the road, which will add five feet on each side. This should be coordinated with resurfacing project that is tentatively scheduled already. Our cost would be $1,612,913 which hopefully at least a portion of would be offset by grants. DOT requested verbal feedback in the next 60 days, indicating whether we want to participate in adding bike lanes to the project.


Corrections & Amplifications –

 


Ocean Isle Beach terminal groin
Leaders in Ocean Isle Beach have been working for years to preserve the coastline and stave of beach erosion at the end of the island. They have the necessary federal and state permits to build a 1,050-foot terminal groin, 300 feet of which will be a sheet-pile, shore-anchorage section. After nearly twenty (20) years of legislative work and lawsuits, contractors have begun building a terminal groin. A terminal groin is a wall-like structure built perpendicular to shore, that traps some of the sand to better secure the beachfront. The entire project is expected to cost more than eleven (11) million dollars, which the town is paying for with accommodations tax money.

Terminal Groin Project Updates
For more information » click here

Construction of Ocean Isle Beach’s terminal groin complete
More than a decade, a lawsuit and a couple of extra million dollars later, the terminal groin on the east end of Ocean Isle Beach is complete. Construction of the 750-foot-long groin officially wrapped earlier this month. All that’s left to be done is getting equipment used during construction off the Brunswick County island. That’ll be done by week’s end if not sooner, certainly by the April 30 deadline. The beach at the east end, where the island rounds to Shallotte Inlet, has a dramatically different look than it had in years past. A robust sand beach stretches some 200 yards or so between homes the terminal groin. Those homes had been dangerously close to the ocean. A wall of massive rocks extends along shore out into the Atlantic Ocean. The beach here has been built up so that it is aligned with the top of the terminal groin. The structure has attracted curious beachgoers and fishermen, so much so that the town has posted temporary signs warning them to look, not touch. “We’ve ordered bigger, permanent signs,” Ocean Isle Beach Mayor Debbie Smith said after hanging up a cell phone call to a town employee. The call was made on a recent, sunny, clear-sky morning as Smith, who offered a tour of the east end and the erosion-mitigation structure designed to keep an encroaching ocean at bay. She had called to alert the employee that a couple of “Keep off rocks” signs posted along the beach behind the terminal groin were laying on the sand. Several hundred yards away, a small crew planted sea oats in uniform lines well back from the ocean tideline. Beach grass is to be planted in the fall. “We’re going to put bales of hay to encourage dune building,” Smith said. The town originally planned to install sand fencing as a way to build up dunes, but there is none for sale because of supply shortages, she said. Portions of a wall of sandbags that stretches some 1,500 feet long remain stacked on the beach near homes. The bags are owned and maintained by private property owners. They were notified by letter a few weeks ago that they will now either have to remove the bags or cover them up. Town-owned sandbags were covered once construction on the terminal groin began. The bags have been part of an ongoing, seemingly last-ditch effort to keep the ocean from overtaking more properties at the east end. The N.C. Department of Transportation abandoned the end of East Second Street years ago. “There used to be a first street out here too,” Smith said as she drove toward the island’s eastern edge. About a mile of the east end from the inlet down the ocean shoreline suffers most from erosion, Smith said, over the years claiming homes, damaging and destroying public utilities and roads. The groin, a wall-like structure built perpendicular to the ocean shoreline, is designed to stop the movement of sand. This function of terminal groins may be beneficial to the beach immediately behind it, but opponents argue the structures can create erosion problems downstream because they cut off natural longshore drift from reaching those areas. Ocean Isle Beach is the second coastal town in North Carolina to build a terminal groin since 2011, when the General Assembly repealed a law banning construction of the structures along the coast. The town’s efforts to install a groin were stalled in August 2017, when the National Audubon Society filed a lawsuit challenging the U.S. Army Corps of Engineer’s approval of the proposed project. The town was later included in the lawsuit. In late March 2021, a three-judge panel in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit affirmed a lower court’s decision that the Corps fairly considered the alternatives included in an environmental impact statement examining the proposed project. Ocean Isle Beach had the necessary state and federal permits in February 2017 to have the terminal groin built so, once the court ruling was handed down, the town put out bids to hire a company to build the groin. Construction began Nov. 16, 2021. At the same time, a joint project between the town and the Corps began to renourish about 1.5 miles of the easternmost beachfront with an estimated 700,000 cubic yards of sand. Through the town’s 50-year Federal Emergency Management Act, or FEMA, project with the Corps, sand is injected onto the ocean shoreline about every three years. “The engineering predicts (the terminal groin) will stretch that out every six or seven years,” she said. It appears that property owners overwhelmingly support the project. When asked, Smith said she could not think of a single property owner who had spoken against the terminal groin. Opponents of the project, she said, do not own property here. Despite the lawsuit, David Hill said he had a hunch the terminal groin would eventually be built so he bought a handful of properties on the east end. “I didn’t have anything down here on the east end until two years ago,” he said. “I watched every one of these rocks go in. I always supported (the terminal groin) because I wanted to keep this beach. The people who don’t think it needs to be here probably don’t know the whole story of this end of the island. This is so needed. I wish it had happened earlier for some of the people who couldn’t save their homes.” Hill said he was initially worried that sand on the east side of the terminal groin would erode, “but it’s building up.” The $11 million project was originally estimated to cost somewhere between $9 million and $9.5 million. The town paid for the project through an account designated for beach projects and funded through a portion of an accommodations tax charged to vacation renters. The groin includes a 300-foot-long anchor, a portion of which is covered by sand. “It’s anticipated that the natural flow of the sand will cover this up,” Smith said, looking at the wall of rocks that were delivered on flatbed trucks from a quarry outside of Rockingham. That’s the case for the terminal groin on Bald Head Island, she said. The Village of Bald Head Island was the first North Carolina coastal town to build a terminal groin after the state law was repealed to allow up to six groins to be built on the coast. Bald Head’s terminal groin was completed in early 2016. The latest monitoring report, which tracked the performance of the terminal groin between May 2020 and May 2021, concluded that the structure was performing “as intended – and as predicted.” The monitoring report was conducted by Jacksonville, Florida-based Olsen Associates Inc. A village spokeswoman said in an email that Erik Olsen confirmed the groin continues to perform as intended and predicted. North Topsail Beach in Onslow County is in the process of having an environmental study prepared for a proposed terminal groin at New River Inlet, a project that may be years out still in that town.
Read more » click here


Hurricane Vehicle Decals
Property owners will be provided with four (4) decals which will be included in their water bills. It is important that you place your decals on your vehicles immediately to avoid misplacing them. Decals will not be issued in the 24-hour period before an anticipated order of evacuation.

The decals are your passes to get back onto the island to check your property in the event an emergency would necessitate restricting access to the island. Decals must be displayed in the lower left-hand corner of the windshield, where they are not obstructed by any other items. Officials must be able to clearly read the decal from outside the vehicle. Please note that re-entry will NOT be allowed if a current, intact decal is not affixed to the windshield as designated.

EVACUATION, CURFEW & DECALS

What is a State of Emergency?
A proclamation by the Town which enacts special ordinances and/or prohibitions during emergency situations to protect the public, public health and property. These prohibitions can include limitations on movement, curfews, directing of evacuations, controlling ingress and egress to the emergency area, alcoholic beverages, and more. State of Emergencies are issued in accordance with N.C.G.S. 166A-19.22.

What is a curfew?
A curfew is an order, typically during a State of Emergency, which requires all persons in the affected areas to remain on their own property. During a curfew, you are not free to move about public domain areas or on others’ property. Violations of a curfew could lead to arrest in certain situations.

What is a voluntary evacuation?
A voluntary evacuation creates a recommendation for all parties in the affected area to get their affairs in order hastily and evacuated.

What is a mandatory evacuation?
A mandatory evacuation means you must leave the area in which an order has been issued. With recent changes to the laws in North Carolina, you no longer have the option of staying in an area under an order of mandatory evacuation.

Why is the sewer system turned off during a storm/event?
Often the sewer system is turned off during storms which have the potential to create significant flooding on the island. The system is turned off to protect its integrity. If it were left on, it could pose a significant threat to the public health. When the system is manually shut down, it also greatly reduces the time needed to bring it back up after an event which equates to getting residents and guests back on the Island much faster.

Why is there a delay for decal holders to get back on the island once a storm ends?
After a storm, many things must occur before even limited access can be allowed. Some of those things include making sure the streets are passable; the sewer system must be restarted to comply with State laws; the utilities (water, sewer, electricity, propane supplies) must be checked to ensure no safety risk are present; and the post-storm damage assessment team needs to perform an initial assessment.

Where can I get up-to-date information during and after a storm or State of Emergency?
You can sign up for the Town email service by clicking here. The newsletter, along with the Town’s website will be the main sources of information during an emergency situation. Links to the Town’s official Facebook and Twitter pages can be found on the website. You can also download our app for Apple and Android phones by accessing the app store on your smart phone and searching Holden Beach.

Please refrain from calling Town Hall and Police Department phone lines with general information questions. These lines need to remain open for emergencies, storm management and post-storm mitigation. All updates concerning re-entry, general access, etc. may be found on the Town’s website and other media outlets.

Why do I see others moving about the island during a curfew?
If a curfew order is in place, you must stay on your own property. You may see many other vehicles moving about the Island. We often receive assistance from other local, state, federal and contract personnel during events. It is likely these are the personnel you are seeing, and they are involved in the mitigation process for the event. Please do not assume that a curfew order has been lifted and/or you are free to move about the island.

Can I check my friends’ property for them?
If a curfew order is in place, you may ONLY travel to your personally owned property. Traveling about the Island to check on others’ property is not allowed. is in place, you may ONLY travel to your personally owned property. Traveling about

Who can obtain decals?
Only property owners and businesses who service the island can obtain a decal.

How do I get decals for my vehicle…?

If I am an owner?
Decals will be mailed out in water bills to property owners before the season starts. Those owners who need additional decals can contact Town Hall. A fee may apply, please check the current fee schedule.

If I am a renter?
You must contact the owner of the property to obtain a decal.

If I am a business owner on the Island?
You must contact Town Hall to obtain a decal.

If I am a business owner off the Island that provides services on the Island?
You must contact Town Hall for eligibility and to obtain a decal.

When does my decal expire?
All decals expire on the last day of the calendar year as indicated on the decal.

Where do I put my decal on my car?
Decals must be displayed in the lower left-hand corner of the windshield, where they are not obstructed by any other items to include window tinting, other decals, etc. Officials must be able to clearly read the decal from outside the vehicle. Please note that re-entry will not be allowed if a current, intact decal is not affixed to the windshield as designated.

How do I replace a decal if I get a new vehicle?
If you trade a vehicle or otherwise need a replacement decal, you may obtain them from Town Hall during normal business hours. A fee may apply, check the current fee schedule.

Can I obtain a decal right before an emergency occurs?
While most of the storms we deal with are tropical in nature with some type of advanced warning, we do experience many other types of events that could create a State of Emergency without warning. All eligible parties should obtain decals as early as possible each year to avoid being denied access to the Island. Decals shall not be issued during the 24-hour period prior to an anticipated order of evacuation so staff can concentrate on properly preparing the Town for the storm/event.

Can I use a tax bill or another document for re-entry?
No. You MUST have a decal to re-enter the Island until it is open to the general public.

How does re-entry after a storm during a State of Emergency work?
The bridge is closed to all vehicle access, except for official vehicles. Once those with proper decals are allowed access, they must conform with the current rules in place by the specific State of Emergency Order. After all hazards have been rendered safe, the bridge will be opened to the general public. A curfew could remain in effect however, to ensure the safety and security of the Island and its residents and guests. Please understand this process typically takes days to evolve and could be significantly longer, depending on the amount of damage sustained. Please refrain from calling for times for re-entry, as those are often not set on schedule. Instead, stay tunes to local media outlets and official social media accounts for accurate updates.

How can I check on my property if access is limited to the Island?
Once it is safe, property owners with valid decals will be allowed back on the Island after a storm/event. At this point, you can travel to your property, in accordance with the rules of the specific State of Emergency Order currently in place.

If you live out of the area, please do not travel to the Island until you are certain you will be allowed access. Stay tuned to those media outlets and email services that are of official nature for this information. Also, be certain you have your current, valid decal properly affixed to your vehicle.

It is a good idea to be sure your contact information is current with the Town tax office as this is the location Town officials will use in the event you need to be contacted.
For more information » click here

NC General Statute 166A-19.22
Power of municipalities and counties to enact ordinances to deal with states of emergency.

Synopsis – The governing body may impose by declaration or enacted ordinance, prohibitions, and restrictions during a state of emergency. This includes the prohibition and restriction of movements of people in public places, including imposing a curfew; directing or compelling the voluntary or mandatory evacuation of all or part of the population, controlling ingress and egress of an emergency area, and providing for the closure of streets, roads, highways, bridges, public vehicular areas. All prohibitions and restrictions imposed by declaration or ordinance shall take effect immediately upon publication of the declaration unless the declaration sets a later time. The prohibitions and restrictions shall expire when they are terminated by the official or entity that imposed them, or when the state of emergency terminates.

Violation – Any person who violates any provisions of an ordinance or a declaration enacted or declared pursuant to this section shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.


Turtle Watch Program –

Turtle Watch Program – 2022

    • The first nest of the 2021season was on May 8th
    • Average annual number of nests is 39.5

Members of the patrol started riding the beach every morning on May 1 and will do so through October looking for signs of turtle nests.
For more information » click here


Holden Beach Turtle Watch meeting launches season
Members of the Holden Beach Turtle Watch Program (HBTWP) held their annual meeting recently at the Holden Beach Chapel. This meeting marked the official beginning of the turtle season for 2022. Members will begin patrolling Holden Beach early mornings in May in search of mother turtle crawls. Last year, the first mother visited Holden Beach on May 8. During the 2021 season, there were 68 turtle nests on Holden Beach with 8,191 known turtle eggs and 6,200 hatchlings went into the ocean. Special guest at this meeting was Jasmine Pier re from Fayetteville. She is this year’s recipient of The Judith C. Bryan, Holden Beach Turtle Watch Fellowship in Marine Biology. Pierre has a Bachelor of Science in marine biology and oceanography and is currently working on a master’s degree at UNCW. Her master’s thesis topic is on diamondback terrapins. This $5,000 fellowship at UNCW was created by the Holden Beach Turtle Watch Program to honor Judith Bryan, the founder of the HBTWP and is intended to assist graduate students in marine biology. Bryan, currently an honorary member of the HBTWP, lives on Holden Beach. Seven new members were welcomed at this meeting. These members completed extensive training last summer with the Turtle Patrol. They are Sharon Binis, John Cain, Kim Crooks, Terre Huffstetler, Bonita McNeil, Sharon Price, and Barb Taylor. Nineteen new trainees will begin this summer. John Cifelli was reelected president of the board and Nikki Hutchison was re-elected secretary. Other board members include Lois Palermo, member-at-large; MaryK McGinley, treasurer; and Pat Cusack, project coordinator. The HBTWP or Turtle Patrol as it is usually referred to, was founded in 1989 to monitor and protect the sea turtle population on Holden Beach. This all volunteer, nonprofit conservation organization operates under the authority of the NC Wildlife Resources Commission (ES Permit 21ST11).

For more information on the HBTWP, go to http://www.hbturtlewatch.org/
Beacon

Holden Beach Turtle Watch makes a splash with new shirts
The Holden Beach Turtle Watch Program, also known as the “Turtle Patrol,” has hatched and released its new 2022 shirts now available for sale. This year’s shirt celebrates first recorded Kemp’s Ridley nest on Holden Beach. This special nest was laid on May 8, 2021. Not only was this the first Kemp’s Ridley nest on Holden Beach, but it was also the first nest to be laid in North Carolina last season. Kemp’s Ridley is the smallest of the five kinds of sea turtles that lay nests in North Carolina. This species, which usually nests further north in the Outer Banks, is the most threatened species of sea turtles that nest in North Carolina. The nest hatched on July 14, 2021, with 87 hatchlings. The art on the shir t reproduces a photo taken by turtle patrol member Corki Jar vis as these Kemp’s Ridley hatchlings scampered into the ocean. The shirt is 90% cotton and 10% polyester and gray in color. The design is on the back and the HBTWP logo on the front. Shirts are currently available for sale at the Lighthouse Gift Shop on the causeway in Holden Beach. Shirts are also available to purchase by mail through the HBTWP website at http://www.hbturtlewatch.org/. The 2022 turtle season will begin on Holden Beach on May 1 when members will begin patrolling the island each morning looking for signs of a mother turtle. Turtle season runs through October. The HBTWP will be conducting educational programs starting June 29. Children’s Turtle Time will be at 4 p.m. each Wednesday through Aug. 3. This program is designed for children 3 to 6 years old. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Turtle Talk will also begin on June 29 at 7 p.m. and will take place each Wednesday through Aug. 17. Turtle Talk is appropriate for all ages. This program focuses on the life cycle of the sea turtle and how the HBTWP aides in the preservation of sea turtles. Several turtle artifacts will be on display for viewing and informational handouts will be available. Both programs are free of charge and will take place at Holden Beach Chapel. The 2002 HBTWP shirt will be on sale at both events. The annual shirt sale is the major fundraising activity for the turtle patrol. Each year, there is a different shirt.
Beacon


Odds & Ends –


Jellyfish
Jellyfish and Portuguese Man of War have been spotted along the surrounding area beaches already this season and the little floating creatures can pack a punch. Often times beachgoers will spot them washed up on shore and other times they can be spotted in the water, but it is best to avoid them when you can. “While all jellyfish sting, not all contain poison that hurts humans. Be careful of jellies that wash up on shore, as some can still sting if tentacles are wet. NOAA recommends that if you are stung by a jellyfish to first seek a lifeguard to give first aid. If no lifeguards are present, wash the wound with vinegar or rubbing alcohol,” NOAA suggests. And what about that … other method of treating stings? Turns out, it’s a myth. In fact, urine can actually aggravate the stinging cells of jellyfish, making things worse. These cells, which detach and stick into the skin of prey, can continue to inject venom. Urine, as well as fresh water, can cause an imbalance to the salt solution surrounding the stinging cells, causing them to continue to fire. According to Scientific American, if you don’t have vinegar or rubbing alcohol, rinsing with saltwater may be your best bet.

At the beach? Don’t pop the ‘balloons!’
We’ve definitely had some windy weather in the past few days. And on the coast, those winds bring with it an interesting sighting! The Cape Lookout National Seashore Park posted on Facebook about some very temptingly poppable-looking things that have been washing up on their beaches. These little “balloons” are gas-filled floats that keep the Man-o-War jellyfish afloat as they drift through the ocean. The winds can pick these floats up and they can wind up on the beach, but the folks at the park caution that no matter how tempting it is, you should not pop these things! “Give them a wide berth,” the Facebook post ways. These are carnivorous jellyfish and use their dangling tentacles to kill their prey. Even washed ashore, the tentacles still pack a punch, so don’t mess with the balloons! Stepping on it will hurt!
Read more » click here

Portuguese man o’ war
The man-of-War are not usually in the area unless pushed to the coast by wind and ocean currents. It is a purple-blue color and can be up to 10 inches long. The Portuguese man o’ war (Physalia physalis),
is not a jellyfish but related to the species and is highly venomous. It has numerous venomous microscopic nematocysts which deliver a painful sting powerful enough to kill fish. Stings can result in intense joint and muscle pain, headaches, shock, collapse, faintness, hysteria, chills, fever, nausea, and vomiting. Severe stings can occur even when the animal is beached or dead. Although it superficially resembles a jellyfish, the Portuguese man o’ war is in fact a siphonophore. Like all siphonophores, it is a colonial organism, made up of many smaller units called zooids. All zooids in a colony are genetically identical, but fulfill specialized functions such as feeding and reproduction, and together allow the colony to operate as a single individual.

 

 

Jellyfish Guide

 

 


Staying safe at the beach: Rip currents, jellyfish, sharks, and other hazards

A trip to the beach can turn deadly (or painful) due to natural hazards but being aware of risks and mitigating hazards is a good way to prevent problems.
Picture this: warm weather, blue skies, and your toes in the sand — it sounds like a perfect lazy summer day at the beach. Maybe you decide to cool down in the ocean and find yourself bobbing around when suddenly you realize you are a little too far out. As panic sinks in and you start to swim towards dry land you realize your efforts are in vain and your whole body is getting tired, all the while you are drifting further into the Atlantic — you have gotten stuck in a rip current. It’s not the only potential danger in the ocean, though. There are also sharks. And, of course, there are some things on shore that ruin your day at the beach, too, including stepping on jellyfish and, of course, good old-fashioned sunburn.

Rip currents
According to the U.S. Lifesaving Association (USLA), 80 percent of all ocean rescues are related to rip currents and annually more than 100 fatalities across the country are due to rip currents. While it is obvious that swimming at a beach with lifeguards is one of the safer options, there are plenty of area beaches that lack lifeguards or maybe ocean rescue season has not started just yet. So, what is the best course of action for surviving a rip current? According to the National Weather Service, there are several things swimmers should keep in mind when dealing with these often-unseen dangers.

  • Relax. Rip currents don’t pull you under.
  • A rip current is a natural treadmill that travels an average speed of 1-2 feet per second but has been measured as fast as 8 feet per second — faster than an Olympic swimmer. Trying to swim against a rip current will only use up your energy; energy you need to survive and escape the rip current.
  • Do NOT try to swim directly into to shore. Swim along the shoreline until you escape the current’s pull. When free from the pull of the current, swim at an angle away from the current toward shore.
  • If you feel you can’t reach shore, relax, face the shore, and call or wave for help. Remember: If in doubt, don’t go out!
  • If at all possible, only swim at beaches with lifeguards.
  • If you choose to swim on beaches without a lifeguard, never swim alone. Take a friend and have that person take a cell phone so he or she can call 911 for help.Sharks
    Sharks are a fear on most every swimmer’s mind, regardless of the actual dangers posed by the large predatory fish. “NOAA states that while shark attacks are rare, they are most likely to occur near shore, typically inshore of a sandbar or between sandbars where sharks can be trapped by low tide, and near steep drop-offs where sharks’ prey gather. While the risks are small, it’s important to be aware of how to avoid an attack,” according to previous reporting.

Suggestions from NOAA for reducing the risk of a shark attack include:

  • Don’t swim too far from shore.
  • Stay in groups – sharks are more likely to attack a solitary individual.
  • Avoid being in the water during darkness or twilight when sharks are most active.
  • Don’t go in the water if bleeding from a wound – sharks have a very acute sense of smell.
  • Leave the shiny jewelry at home – the reflected light resembles fish scales.
  • Avoid brightly-colored swimwear – sharks see contrast particularly well.Sunburns
    Most everyone has experienced a sunburn at one point in their life and while not often thought as a major concern for many, overexposure to UV light can cause serious long-term problems including skin cancer. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends using at least S.P.F. 15 sunscreen at least 15 minutes prior to sun exposure. Wearing a hat, long sleeves, and other protective clothing is also recommended to keep skin protected.

Jellyfish
Jellyfish and Portuguese Man of War have been spotted along the beaches of New Hanover County and surrounding area beaches already this season and the little floating creatures can pack a punch. Often times beachgoers will spot them washed up on shore and other times they can be spotted in the water, but it is best to avoid them when you can. “While all jellyfish sting, not all contain poison that hurts humans. Be careful of jellies that wash up on shore, as some can still sting if tentacles are wet. NOAA recommends that if you are stung by a jellyfish to first seek a lifeguard to give first aid. If no lifeguards are present, wash the wound with vinegar or rubbing alcohol,” NOAA suggests. And what about that … other method of treating stings? Turns out, it’s a myth. In fact, urine can actually aggravate the stinging cells of jellyfish, making things worse. These cells, which detach and stick into the skin of prey, can continue to inject venom. Urine, as well as fresh water, can cause an imbalance to the salt solution surrounding the stinging cells, causing them to continue to fire. According to Scientific American, if you don’t have vinegar or rubbing alcohol, rinsing with salt water may be your best bet.
Read more » click here


This and That –


.

Beachcombing Guide

 

.
How to Collect Seashells
“It helps to have a search image in your mind,” says José H. Leal, the science director and curator at the Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum in Florida. Research ahead of time what kind of mollusks you might encounter so that your eyes are primed to pick out specific shapes and colors. Leal has collected seashells since he was a boy in Rio de Janeiro. On his first trip to New York, in his 20s, he was so shell-focused that he dove to the sidewalk before realizing that what he thought were small, unusual clams were actually pistachio shells. “You get fixated,” he says. Consult a tide chart; go out within an hour of low tide when the beach is most exposed. Storms tend to wash more shells ashore in the winter months. In popular shelling destinations such as Sanibel Island, near where Leal lives, collectors often search at night to avoid competition. (If turtles are nesting in the area, avoid using flashlights, which disrupt brooding females and disorient their hatchlings.) If shells are abundant, pick a spot and settle in. Rather than hoard shells, take only the most beautiful specimens of each variety. Make sure the shell is uninhabited. With the spiral-shaped gastropods, you should be able to see the creature. “A shell is usually much heavier when there’s an animal inside,” Leal says. Know the relevant regulations; many places curtail or outright ban the collection of shells, and the United States has various import restrictions, including a prohibition on queen conch shells from the Caribbean. The urge to beachcomb is natural, however. Humans have been using mollusk exoskeletons as art, adornment, currency, and tools since before we were even human beings. (Scientists recently discovered distinct hash marks on a freshwater mussel shell they believe were engraved by our extinct ancestor Homo erectus.) Still, Leal is worried about the future of marine mollusks, given how vulnerable they are to pollution and ocean acidification. Maybe your urge to collect these unoccupied calcium-carbonate dwellings can serve as a sort of gateway drug. “Once you get a love for shells,” Leal says, “I hope you learn to care about the animals that make them.”
Read more » click here


Factoid That May Interest Only Me –

State Wildlife Resources Commission: Expect coyote sightings
The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission says people should expect coyote sightings the rest of the spring. The NCWRC says coyotes are common throughout the state, even in cities and suburbs, but frequently are not seen because they are adept at avoiding people. The commission says coyotes prefer to raise their young in secluded areas, but the animals must scout for food all over to feed their pups. Thus, people may find coyotes roaming around their neighborhoods looking for food. The NCWRC gave tips to people on how to keep themselves and their families and pets safe in the coming months:

    • Keep small pets indoors or supervise them outdoors, and remove dishes and spilled food outside
    • Have dog-proof fencing, which is at least six feet tall and prevents digging underneath, to keep coyotes out
    • Remove any food sources that could attract coyotes (keep fruit and birdseed off the ground)
    • Find ways to actively make the area uncomfortable for coyotes
    • Deter coyotes away from homes and businesses by waving your arms and shouting forcefully

Visit here to learn more about how to stay away from, and if needed, deal with coyotes.
Read more » click here

Expect Coyote sightings as pupping season peaks
Coyotes will roam a wide area searching for food, sometimes crossing through neighborhoods and densely populated areas looking for an easy meal.

Coyotes are common throughout North Carolina, even in cities and suburbs, but often go unnoticed because they are very good at avoiding people. However, biologists with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission say that coyote sightings spike in the spring, so it’s imperative to know what attracts them, and what to do if you see one. Coyotes prefer to raise their young in secluded areas but keeping a litter of pups well-fed and healthy means scouting for food at all hours and covering a large territory. Coyotes will roam a wide area searching for food, sometimes crossing through neighborhoods and densely populated areas looking for an easy meal. Coyotes mostly eat rabbits, small rodents, insects, fruits and dead animals, but will also dine on outdoor pet food and food scraps left near homes. Smaller pets, such as cats and small-breed dogs, should always be closely supervised when outdoors, as they can easily be mistaken for a coyote’s natural prey.
Dog-proof fencing, which is at least 6 feet tall and prevents digging underneath, is the only guarantee of a no-coyote zone, but there are other ways to keep coyotes from hanging around. “Try to remove any food sources that could attract coyotes and find ways to actively make the area uncomfortable for them,” says Falyn Owens, extension biologist for the Wildlife Commission.

Owens offers these tips to deter coyotes:

    • Feed pets inside and keep food waste in secure containers. If you feed pets outside, set specific feeding times and remove the dishes and spilled food afterward.
    • Keep fruit and bird seed off the ground. They can attract coyotes and their rodent prey.
    • Keep cats and small dogs on a leash or harness whenever they are outside.
    • Haze coyotes away from homes and businesses. Examples include waving your arms and shouting forcefully until a coyote leaves, spraying them with a water hose or throwing small rocks in their direction.

Pup season brings an added factor to interacting with coyotes. “Coyotes typically avoid confrontations with people, but they are diligent parents. A coyote that has young pups nearby is more likely to stand its ground rather than run away. If you are passing through a brushy or wooded area and notice a coyote watching you or following you at a distance, there could be a den nearby,” said Owens. “Calmly leave and notify others to avoid the area if you are near a public trail. Coyotes will move on once their pups are old enough to survive outside of the den.” Coyotes rarely attack people, but sometimes take an interest in our pets. Keep cats indoors, and if you are walking a small dog and notice a coyote watching or following you, pick up the dog and haze the coyote until it leaves. Teaching a coyote to have a healthy fear of people is a great way to discourage unwanted behavior and foster coexistence. If you have questions about interactions with coyotes, you can click here to be directed to the N.C Wildlife Commission’s website.
Read more » click here


As snake sightings increase due to warmer weather,
NC Wildlife urges people not to kill them
The warm weather means more snakes will start to show up along trails, in the woods, crossing roads and in our yards, according to the NC Wildlife Resources Commission. Wildlife diversity biologists request that if you see a snake, do not be alarmed, do not kill it, give it plenty of room, and if you see a rattlesnake, report it. “Snakes are an important part of the ecosystem and help control the rodent, slug and insect populations,” reptile conservation biologist Jeff Hall said. “There are many ways we can coexist with snakes, which is important because of 38 of North Carolina’s native snake species, ten are listed endangered, threatened or of special concern.” Of the six venomous snake species native to N.C., three are rattlesnakes – the timber, the pigmy and the Eastern diamondback. Each one is in decline and protected by the North Carolina Endangered Species Act. Persecution by humans and habitat destruction are the main culprits. If anyone spots a rattler, they are urged to send an email to rattlesnake@ncwildlife.org with a photo (required), date and time the snake was observed and location (GPS coordinates preferred), or they can log their sighting on the HerpMapper mobile app. If you see a snake in your yard and would prefer it to reside elsewhere, NC Wildlife says you can safely encourage it to leave by gently spraying it with a garden hose. You can also make your yard less hospitable for snakes by cleaning up clutter such as stick and rock piles, keeping your lawn mowed, closing gaps and holes in your siding and foundation, and sealing openings under doors, windows and around waterpipes. They say most snakes will leave people alone if they aren’t bothered and are provided an escape route. Watching for snakes and giving them a wide berth are effective habits for co-existing with snakes safely.
Read more » click here

There are 6 venomous snakes in North Carolina. Know what they look like.
If it’s spring, it’s time for us to remind you about some of the slithering neighbors you might encounter when you’re outdoors over the next several months. As the weather warms up in North Carolina, snakes start moving around, doing snakey things, and we are more likely to cross paths with them. They generally aren’t cause for much concern, but encounters can be a little scary for some (for the snakes as well as the people). It’s important to know that of the 38 species of snakes in North Carolina, the majority are nonvenomous and not aggressive toward people unless threatened. Arm yourself with knowledge. Learn about the venomous (sometimes incorrectly referred to as poisonous) snakes in our area, and how to distinguish them from the harmless ones.

How to tell if a snake is venomous

What’s the head shape? A commonly shared rule of thumb is that most venomous snakes have a triangular or diamond-shaped head, while nonvenomous snakes have a tapered head.

You can’t rely on that, though. Some nonvenomous snakes (such as a rat snake) can mimic the triangular shape of venomous snakes by flattening their heads when threatened (to avoid becoming the prey of another animal), so never go by head shape alone.

Can you see its eyes? Another tricky but often shared tip is to check out the pupil shape. Venomous snakes have been said to have oblong pupils that look like a slit in the center of the eye, whereas nonvenomous snakes will have a round pupil. In fact, according to a document on the NC Wildlife website, a snake’s pupils can dilate just like a human’s, and can look round.

The best way to know if a snake is venomous is to know which venomous snakes are common in your area and know what they look like.

North Carolina’s venomous snakes

There are six venomous snakes found in North Carolina:

    • The copperhead
    • The cottonmouth (also called water moccasin)
    • The Eastern diamondback rattlesnake
    • The timber rattlesnake
    • The pigmy rattlesnake
    • The Eastern coral snake

Copperhead
Copperhead snakes are the most common venomous snakes in North Carolina.

What they look like: They are brownish in color with an hourglass shaped pattern, which resembles a Hershey Kiss. Copperhead babies are born with a yellow or green tail tip, which turns brown or black after they are about a year old. Adult copperheads grow to about 3 feet long.

The bite: The Carolinas Poison Center in Charlotte says it receives about 10 times the number of calls about copperhead bites than all other snakes combined. Copperhead bites can be severe, but about half of copperhead bites result in only mild swelling and pain.

Where are they? Copperheads are found all over North Carolina.
(Source: Carolinas Poison Center)

 


Cottonmouth (water moccasin)

What they look like: Cottonmouth snakes have dark bands on dark or olive skin, but are most well-known for the white, cotton-like interior of their mouths.

Young cottonmouths can be lighter in color and can resemble copperheads. Juvenile cottonmouths have bright yellow or greenish tail tips, and the details of the cross-band pattern are most evident in this age group. Older cottonmouth snakes are often completely dark and with no pattern.

Adult cottonmouths grow to about 3-4 feet in length but have been known to grow to 6 feet.

The bite: The bite severity of a cottonmouth is similar to that of a copperhead.

Where are they? Cottonmouths are found mostly in the eastern part of North Carolina and prefer freshwater environments (but can also be found on land).
(Source: Carolinas Poison Center)


Eastern diamondback rattlesnake

What they look like: The eastern diamondback rattlesnake has gray or yellowish skin with a dark diamond pattern outlined in black. They have large, broad heads with two light lines on the face.

The Eastern diamondback rattlesnake is the heaviest, though not the longest, venomous snake in the Americas, and it is the largest rattlesnake in the world. These snakes can weigh up to four or five pounds and typically grow to about 4-5 feet in length (the largest ever recorded was 8 feet long).

These snakes are known for the bone-chilling rattle sound they make.

The bite: Bites from rattlesnakes are more severe than bites from copperheads or cottonmouths, and are considered a medical emergency.

Where are they? They are found in the southeastern parts of North Carolina, preferring sandy, coastal regions.
(Source: Carolinas Poison Center, Savannah River Ecology Lab)


Pigmy rattlesnake

What they look like: Pigmy rattlesnakes have gray, pinkish or red skin with a dark, spotted pattern. They grow only to about 1-2 feet in length.

Pigmy rattlesnakes do rattle, but the rattle sounds more like a buzz.

The bite: Bites from rattlesnakes are more severe than copperheads or cottonmouths and are considered a medical emergency.

Where are they? These snakes are found in the southeastern part of North Carolina, particularly in forests.
(Source: Carolinas Poison Center)


Timber rattlesnake

What they look like: The timber rattlesnake can vary in color but has dark bands on lighter skin with a rattle at the end of its tail. Coastal varieties have what looks like a brown or orange “racing stripe” down the middle of the back.

Timber rattlesnakes grow to about 4 feet in length.

The bite: Bites from rattlesnakes are more severe than copperheads or cottonmouths and are considered a medical emergency.

Where are they? Timber rattlesnakes can be found throughout North Carolina, preferring forests.
(Source: Carolinas Poison Center)


Eastern coral snake

Coral snakes are actually extremely rare in North Carolina and are considered endangered, but they are quite venomous.

What they look like: These snakes are slender with red, yellow, and black rings. The coral snake closely resembles the scarlet kingsnake (which is harmless), but there’s an easy way to tell them apart. Just remember this rhyme: “Red touches black, friend of Jack; red touches yellow, kills a fellow.”

Another way to tell a scarlet kingsnake from a coral snake is by the color of its snout. A scarlet kingsnake has a red snout, and a coral snake has a black snout.

A coral snake’s snout is also blunt shaped, especially compared to most snakes.

The bite: Coral snake venom attacks the central nervous system, and death, if it occurs, is usually the result of respiratory failure.

Where are they? Coral snakes live in sandy areas nearer the South Carolina border and stay underground most of the time.
(Source: Herps of NC)


If you have been bitten by a snake, you SHOULD:

Sit down and stay calm.

Gently wash the bite area with warm, soapy water.

Remove any jewelry or tight clothing near the bite site.

Keep the bitten area still, if possible, and raise it to heart level.

Call the Carolinas Poison Center: 1-800-222-1222.

Note: If a snakebite victim is having chest pain, difficulty breathing, face swelling or has lost consciousness, call 911 immediately.


If bitten by a snake, you SHOULD NOT:

Cut the bitten area to try to drain the venom. This can worsen the injury.

Ice the area. Icing causes additional tissue damage.

Apply a tourniquet or any tight bandage. It’s actually better for the venom to flow through the body than for it to stay in one area.

Suck on the bite or use a suction device to try to remove the venom.

Attempt to catch or kill the snake.

Call Carolinas Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222 for questions about a snake bite or for more information.
(Source: Carolinas Poison Center)

Read more » click here


Hot Button Issues

Subjects that are important to people and about which they have strong opinions


Climate
For more information » click here

There’s something happening here
What it is ain’t exactly clear


.

Flood Insurance Program
For more information » click here
.


National Flood Insurance Program: Reauthorization
Congress must periodically renew the NFIP’s statutory authority to operate. On March 11, 2022, the President signed legislation passed by Congress that extends the National Flood Insurance Program’s (NFIP’s) authorization to March 15, 2022.

Congress must now reauthorize the NFIP
by no later than 11:59 pm on September 30, 2022


 

GenX
For more information » click here

 


  •  

    Homeowners Insurance
    For more information » click here

     


  •  

  • Hurricane Season
    For more information » click here

 


 

Inlet Hazard Areas
For more information » click here

 

Update of Inlet Hazard Area Boundaries
Public Hearing Schedule Inlet Hazard Area Update

2019_Inlet_Hazard_Area_Boundary_Update_20190212

15A NCAC 07H .0304 for public hearing

15A NCAC 07H .0306 for public hearing

15A NCAC 07H .0309 for public hearing

15A NCAC 07H .0310 for public hearing

OSBM Approved Fiscal Analysis 2019 IHA Update

Details
The Coastal Resources Commission’s proposed amendments reference the proposed update of Inlet Hazard Area boundaries and associated development setback factors. The proposed amendments are in the public interest as they are intended to minimize the loss of property and human life by establishing development setbacks between structures and the Atlantic shoreline.

Comment Period: April 18, 2022 – June 17, 2022

Written Comments
Division of Coastal Management
400 Commerce Avenue
Morehead City, NC  28557

For more information » click here.


.

Lockwood Folly Inlet
For more information » click here
.


.

Seismic Testing / Offshore Drilling

For more information » click here
.


.

Offshore Wind Farms

For more information » click here

 

These two companies paid $315 million to develop wind energy off the Brunswick coast
More than 110,000 acres off the Bald Head Island coast will soon be home to a wind turbine farm. The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management has auctioned off the two wind energy lease sites roughly 20 nautical miles from the coast of Brunswick County for a combined $315 million. Duke Energy Renewables Wind won the right to develop offshore wind on the eastern 54,154-acre site with a bid of $155 million. Total Energies Renewables USA bid $160 million to develop the 54,937-acre western site. The combined sites are expected generate 1.3 gigawatts of renewable energy if fully developed, enough to power about 500,000 homes. Last year, N.C. Gov. Roy Cooper announced a statewide goal to produce 2.8 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030 and 8 gigawatts by 2040.
The auction comes at a time of increased urgency, as a looming 10-year moratorium on offshore wind energy development is set to take effect in July. Over the past year, several Brunswick municipalities have come out against the offshore leases, citing affects the visual impacts would have to the tourist-dependent economy. Brunswick County, Sunset Beach, Ocean Isle Beach, Caswell Beach and the Village of Bald Head Island have all passed resolutions opposing their construction. Charter fisherman have also questioned how the turbines might affect migratory fish and say the turbines are located in a popular fishing spots such as Southwest Tower Bottom and The Horseshoe. According to BOEM, they’ve responded to local concerns by reducing the wind lease area by 14%, making it less visible from the mainland, and requiring monitoring on migration patterns. The winning bidders also pledged to invest $42 million total in domestic supply chain and workforce training. A January 2022 study from the Southeastern Wind Coalition found that if the state reaches its 2.8-megawatt wind energy production goal by 2030, it will result in “a net economic benefit of up to $4.6 billion.” “Investments from two developers means increased supply chain investment and recruitment, workforce development and thousands of good-paying jobs, and infrastructure development that will support other North Carolina industries,” coalition president Katharine Kollins said in a release. An anti-competitiveness review of the auction will be conducted by the Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission before the leases are finalized.
Read more » click here

Duke, TotalEnergies winning bidders in wind lease auction
Federal officials Wednesday auctioned two lease areas off the North Carolina and South Carolina coast, the second major offshore wind lease sale this year. The Department of the Interior announced results late Wednesday. The provisional winner for renewable energy lease No. OCS-A 0545, the westernmost, 54,937-acre section of the Carolina Long Bay area was TotalEnergies Renewables USA, LLC, which bid $160 million. Duke Energy Renewables Wind, LLC was the provisional winner for lease No. OCS-A 0546, a 55,154-acre area, with a $155 million bid. The winning bids each dwarfed that for the Kitty Hawk offshore wind lease auction five years ago. The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management says OCS-A 0545 and OCS-A 0546 together, if developed, could generate 1.3 gigawatts or more, enough to power nearly 500,000 homes. Officials called the auction a significant milestone towards achieving the Biden-Harris administration’s goal of deploying 30 gigawatts of offshore wind energy capacity by 2030. “The Biden-Harris administration is moving forward at the pace and scale required to help achieve the President’s goals to make offshore wind energy a reality for the United States,” said Secretary Deb Haaland in the announcement. “Together with an all-of-government approach, we can combat the effects of climate change while creating good-paying union jobs that can benefit underserved communities. Today’s lease sale is further proof that there is strong industry interest and that America’s clean energy transition is here.” The Carolina Long Bay offshore wind auction included a new 20% credit for bidders, which commits to a monetary contribution to programs or initiatives that support workforce training programs for the offshore wind industry, development of a U.S. domestic supply chain for the offshore wind energy industry, or both. The credit will result in $42 million for the programs or initiatives, officials said. “This auction puts real dollars on the table to support economic growth from offshore wind energy development – including the jobs that come with it,” said BOEM Director Amanda Lefton. “The new bidding credit in the Carolina Long Bay auction will result in tangible investments for workforce training and businesses in the United States, to ultimately create jobs in the U.S. across the industries needed to support achieving our offshore wind goals.” Periodic updates on the auction, which began at 9 a.m. and wrapped up about 5 p.m., were posted at the BOEM website. Bidders could vie for one or both of the lease areas within the Wilmington East Wind Energy Area. The two lease areas include similar acreage, distance to shore and wind resource potential. The Carolina Long Bay wind energy area’s closest distance to shore is about 15 nautical miles. Federal officials have said the location and shape of the lease areas were drawn based on considerations such as vessel traffic patterns, North Atlantic right whale habitat, Defense Department considerations and visual concerns expressed in coastal communities. The Interior Department said that to advance its environmental justice goals, leaseholders are also required to identify Tribal nations, underserved communities, agencies, ocean users and other stakeholders and to report on those communications and engagement activities. “These stipulations are intended to promote offshore wind energy development in a way that coexists with other ocean uses, addresses potential impacts and benefits, and protects the ocean environment, while also facilitating our nation’s energy future for generations to come,” according to the announcement. Before the leases are finalized, the Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission must conduct an anti-competitiveness review of the auction, and the provisional winners will be required to pay any balance on the winning bids and provide financial assurance to BOEM.
Read more » click here.


Things I Think I Think –

Dining #2Eating out is one of the great little joys of life.

Restaurant Review:
Dinner Club visits a new restaurant once a month. Ratings reflect the reviewer’s reaction to food, ambience and service, with price taken into consideration.
///// April 2022
Name:              Flamingo Grill                                                                                               Cuisine:           American
Location:        7050 N. Kings Highway, Myrtle Beach SC
Contact:          843.449.5388 /
https://flamingogrill.com/
Food:                Average / Very Good / Excellent / Exceptional
Service:           Efficient / Proficient / Professional / Expert
Ambience:      Drab / Plain / Distinct / Elegant
Cost:                 Inexpensive <=17 / Moderate <=22 / Expensive <=27 / Exorbitant <=40
Rating:            Two Stars
Located one mile south of Carolina Opry and the Dunes Golf Club on the corner of 71st Ave., Flamingo Grill opened in 1986 and is operated by the owners of Cagney’s Old Place. It’s a popular casual dining spot, in an art deco setting, with something for everyone. Old school, menu including specials offers almost fifty (50) entrée choices. Despite great reviews it isn’t really anything special, we found it to be pretty standard fare. There are any number of restaurants that are as good so it’s pretty hard to justify the over one-hour drive just to eat there.


Wilmington’s Indochine restaurant group expands in Brunswick
In recent years, Indochine’s Solange “Niki” Thompson has been expanding her restaurant group — first by opening Café Chinois and Indochine Express in Wilmington and then turning her eyes to Brunswick County. Now, Southport’s Indochine Express opens today at 1131 N. Atlantic Ave. in the former Siam Thai Bistro location. She also said another Express location is months away in Leland. In Southport, the space is larger than its Wilmington counterpart, but the menu is the same. It includes a selection of soups, salads, appetizers, entrees and desserts. Many of them, like the Crab Angels, Imperial Pineapple Rice and curries are favorites at the original Indochine. Also look for lunch specials and a special ramen noodle soup. The look features the bold colors that can be found in the other locations. “We wanted it to be cute and fun,” Thompson said. She once again worked with designer Dennis Castro who helped create the distinctive look at Café Chinois. The restaurant will be open for lunch and dinner Tuesday through Saturday, and for lunch on Sunday. They will be closed Mondays. Meanwhile, they are also getting closer to opening another Brunswick County location. Thompson said that plans are underway for an Express at the former Charlie Grainger’s restaurant at 1110 New Pointe Blvd., near the Walmart. Thompson said if all goes well, that restaurant should open in a few months.
Read more » click here


Dining Guide – Guests

Dining Guide – Local

Restaurant Reviews – North

Restaurant Reviews – South 


Book Review:
Read several books from The New York Times best sellers fiction list monthly
Selection represents this month’s pick of the litter
/////

THE MADNESS OF CROWDS
by Louise Penny
This is the seventeenth entry in the Chief Inspector Gamache, the head of homicide of Quebec’s provincial police force, series. This time around, Gamache is ordered to provide security for a lecture by controversial statistics professor whose views are repulsive to him. Gamache realizes that “the madness of crowds” could be the most dangerous side effect of the pandemic. The plot’s relationship to current events is what makes the story work.

Chief Inspector Gamache tells new agents the four sayings that can lead to wisdom –
I was wrong, I’m sorry, I don’t know, I need help     


  • .That’s it for this newsletter

    See you next month


    Lou’s Views . HBPOIN

    .                               • Gather and disseminate information
    .                           • Identify the issues and determine how they affect you

    .                           • Act as a watchdog
    .                           • Grass roots monthly newsletter since 2008

    https://lousviews.com/