Townhall Icon, a Place for Town Meeting, Lous Views

07 – Town Meeting

Lou’s Views

“Unofficial” Minutes & Comments

BOC’s Special Meeting 07/18/23

Board of Commissioners’ Agenda Packet » click here

Audio Recording » click here NA

1. Interviews for Town Boards

BOC’s Public Hearing / Regular Meeting 07/18/23

Board of Commissioners’ Agenda Packet click here

Audio Recording » click here

Public Hearing

PUBLIC HEARING: Ordinance 23-12, An Ordinance Amending the Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Chapter 157: Zoning Code (Lot Coverage)

 Proposed Ordinance 23-12 » click here

Regular Meeting

1.   Police Report – Chief Jeremy Dixon

Agenda Packet – pages 12 – 22

Police Report » click here



First few weeks in July are the busiest weeks of the year
Fairly uneventful, typical summertime fun at the beach

Jeremy clarified how they are handling vehicle citations
They  are issuing warnings to educate the public and get better compliance

Golf carts is being addressed as a priority in order to keep people safe. All rules that apply to motor vehicles apply to golf carts.

The police department currently has only nine (9) officers of the ten (10) they are budgeted to have. 

      • They are down officer Preston Conley who is out on long-term medical disability
      • John our new officer hire has been sworn in
      • So, we still only have eight (8) officers out there

What he did not say –

Remind everyone that its Hurricane Season – be prepared, have a plan!

Defensive DrivingBe mindful on the road, tourists are out there and frankly many of them are not paying attention. Defensive driving is driving characterized by prudence, diligence, and reasonable cautiousness. Its aim is to reduce the risk of collision by anticipating dangerous situations, despite adverse conditions or the actions of others.

If you know something, hear something, or see something –
call 911 and let the police deal with it.

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

A reminder of the Town’s beach strand ordinances:
Chapter 90 / Animals / § 90.20 / Responsibilities of owners
pets are not allowed on the beach strand except between 5p.m. and 9a.m. daily
dog’s must be on a leash at all times
owner’s need to clean up after their animals
Chapter 94 / Beach regulations / § 94.05 / Digging of holes on beach strand
digging holes greater than 12 inches deep without responsible person there
holes shall be filled in prior to leaving
Chapter 94 / Beach regulations / § 94.06 / Placing obstructions on the beach strand
all unattended beach equipment must be removed daily by 6:00pm

Pets on the beach strand
Pets – Chapter 90 / Animals / §90.20
Pets must be on a leash at all times on the island.
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

Unattended Gear
Ordinance §94.06 was passed on September 14, 2010. All unattended beach equipment must be removed from the beach by its owner or permitted user daily. All unattended personal equipment remaining on the beach between the hours of 6PM and 7AM will be classified as abandoned property and will be disposed of by the Town.

Golf carts are treated the same as any other automotive vehicle.Golf carts

In the State of North Carolina, if a golf cart is to be operated on the streets, highways, or public vehicular areas, it is considered a motor vehicle and subject to all laws, rules and regulations that govern motor vehicles. In short, the golf cart must have all of the following: The driver MUST have a current, valid Driver’s License

        • Child Restraint Laws must be followed
        • Headlights
        • Tail lights
        • Turn signals
        • Rear view mirrors
        • State Inspection Sticker
        • License Plate Issued by NCDMV
        • Liability Insurance

All of the streets in the Town (including the side streets) are considered streets or public vehicular areas according to the State Law. This means that to operate a golf cart anywhere on the island, you must meet the standards above.

2.   Inspections Department Report – Inspections Director Evans

Agenda Packet – pages 23 – 25

Inspections Report » click here

Update –
Timbo briefly reviewed department activity last month, the department still remains very busy. He also reviewed the status of projects with our ADA Mediation Agreement. He has also  been working on the annual Community Rating System evaluation which gives us a fifteen (15) percent reduction in our insurance rates. 

Community Rating System (CRS)
The National Flood Insurance Program’s (NFIP) Community Rating System (CRS) is a voluntary incentive program that recognizes and encourages community floodplain management activities that exceed the minimum NFIP requirements.

As a result, flood insurance premium rates are discounted to reflect the reduced flood risk resulting from the community actions meeting the three goals of the CRS:

      • Reduce flood damage to insurable property;
      • Strengthen and support the insurance aspects of the NFIP, and
      • Encourage a comprehensive approach to floodplain management.

For CRS participating communities, flood insurance premium rates are discounted in increments of 5% (i.e., a Class 1 community would receive a 45% premium discount, while a Class 9 community would receive a 5% discount (a Class 10 is not participating in the CRS and receives no discount)). The CRS classes for local communities are based on 18 creditable activities, organized under four categories:

      • Public Information,
      • Mapping and Regulations,
      • Flood Damage Reduction, and
      • Flood Preparedness.

National Flood Insurance Program Information
The Planning and Inspections Department is providing educational reference materials as one of the requirements for continued participation in the National Flood Insurance Program. Click here to view the information. Questions can be presented for staffs’ review at [email protected].

3.   Discussion and Possible Action on Ordinance 23-12, An Ordinance Amending Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Chapter 157: Zoning Code (Lot Coverage) – Inspections Director Evans
.     a. Statement of Consistency

Agenda Packet – pages 26 – 29

Ordinance 23-12, An Ordinance Amending Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Chapter 157 : Zoning Code (Lot Coverage) was prepared based on the information presented by Inspections Director Evans at the June meeting. In order to amend the Zoning Code, the Board must approve a statement describing whether the action is consistent or inconsistent with the Town’s Land Use Plan. The Planning & Zoning Board has reviewed the proposed changes and created a Statement of Consistency. The required public hearing is scheduled for the start of the meeting.

If the Board would like to adopt the proposed regulations, the suggested motion is to approve Ordinance 23-12 and accept the Statement of Consistency.

Proposed Ordinance 23-12 » click here

THB P & Z Board  Statement of Consistency and Zoning Recommendation
The Town of Holden Beach Planning & Zoning Board has reviewed and hereby recommends approval of amendments to chapter 157.058 (C)(7Xa), 157.060 (b)(7)(a) and 1S7.06l(D)(6Xa) of the zoning ordinances regarding Storm Water Management under Chapter 158.01

After review, The Planning and Zoning Board has found that the recommended amendments are consistent with the adopted CAMA Land Use plan and are considered reasonable and in the public interest for the following reasons.

Use of Property: the guidelines as written have no evidentiary benefits to the introduction and encouragement to improve properties for better stormwater retention. Chapter 6: Tools for Managing development. Stormwater Management Plan and Ordinances, which states the intent of the ordinances is to control stormwater as much as possible onsite.

Economic Impacts: The CAMA Land use plan Goals and Objectives, both identify the need to balance new development and redevelopment with a balance between land and conservation while maintaining the Family Friendly atmosphere as established under Objectives 5.1, By allowing and additional ten percent we can provide for small redevelopment of properties and encouraging participation by property owners in Stormwater Management activities outline under 158.0t. Those nonconforming lots who have no stormwater and are above the existing 30 percent often go undeveloped and may never participate because of the unintended reduction in use of properties.

Environmental Impacts: It will provide better stormwater management within the corporate limits of the town of Holden Beach. by minimizing sheet flow and utilizing Engineered stormwater control Stormwater Management (3.1.J) Policy.

Upon approval by the Board of Commissioners the Comprehensive Plan will be deemed amended and shall not require any additional request or application for amendment.

Previously reported – June 2023
Timbo explained the rationale for the proposed changes. He doesn’t see any negatives with this increase mainly because all stormwater systems will have to be engineered and if there site won’t hold the water the engineers won’t allow it. The Board agreed to move forward with the proposed changes and scheduled a Public Hearing for July 18th.

Update –
The required Public Hearing was held at the start of the meeting. The Board accepted the Statement of Consistency that was submitted by the Planning & Zoning Board. The motion was made to approve Ordinance 23-12 as submitted.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously

4.   Update on Proposed Changes to Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Section 157.025 Bulkheads on Lots – Inspections Director Evans

Agenda Packet – page 30


(A) No structure shall be erected on a canal lot prior to bulkheading; bulkheading to be on a line established by the Corps of Engineers and CAMA staff. Any lot on a canal with depth of less than 75 feet between the established bulkhead line and the front property line shall be unbuildable.  Canal lots which have a minimum depth of 75 feet may be developed. This depth shall be the average depth of the lot measured from front to back at ten-foot intervals across the width of the lot. This provision does not affect the yard requirements.

(B) No erosion shall be permitted as a result of poorly constructed or worn bulkheads. Repairs will be based on the ability of the bulkhead to prevent erosion of soil and sedimentation, not on the age of, or original materials used in the bulkhead. Any bulkhead allowing soil or sediment to travel under, over, around, or through it will be in violation and will require repair. As enforcement official for this chapter, the Building Inspector will require corrective action within 90 days of the first notice to the owner. If the repair cost will exceed 50% of the cost of a new bulkhead the owner will be required to replace the bulkhead with a new structure meeting the current building code.

(C) Bulkhead repair A bulkhead will need repairing under any one or more of the following conditions:

      • Where the structure deteriorates enough to allow sediment to filter through into a canal.
      • When any sediment goes under the bulkhead, as indicated by sinkholes behind bulkhead.
      • When the top of bulkhead leans waterward due to failing dead man anchors.

(D) Bulkheads on canal lots. Bulkheads are required on all canal lots. Every property located on Holden Beach must be brought into compliance with this requirement by February 10, 2012. For purposes of this section “all canal lots” is construed to mean the entrance, feeder and finger canals of the Harbor Acres, Heritage Harbor and Holden Beach Harbor subdivisions. Specifically excluded are lots bordering the Atlantic lntracoastal Waterway, except where they may abut the entrance, feeder and finger canals within the aforementioned subdivisions.

(E) In addition to the penalties and remedies allowed in§ 157.999(A)(1) of this chapter, violators of this section will be subject to a civil fine as provided in § 157.999(A)(3) for each day the violation continues.

Previously reported – June 2023

The Board will need to set a public hearing and consider a Consistency statement from the Planning Board.

In an effort to keep clear the centerline of the navigable canals, and establish uniformity for use by those using the public Trust waters Staff proposes the addition of this language to, § 157.025

 (F) A 20-foot navigational channel (ten feet on either side the center) shall be established with in the natural concrete canals and a 12- foot clear navigable channel (six feet on either side of the center) shall be established within the Ts of the canal.

   1. in an effort to insure the property owner’s flexibility in the size of the watercraft they wish to dock either permanently or temporarily, the establishment of a navigational channel will provide a clear zone of travel in the canals. Should the property owner already own or wish to purchase a watercraft that would interfere with the navigable channel, the property owner would have the option of decreasing the width and or design of his dock.

Timbo took responsibility for communication breakdown; this was just a test balloon to see if they want to move forward or not. He is proposing that this be sent back to the Planning & Zoning Board for additional input from the community and to work on it some more. The board agreed to send it back to P&Z.

Update –
Timbo stated that the majority of the public is against taking this action. The board agreed not to send it back to the Planning & Zoning Board since the issue has been resolved. Apparently there are regulations in place through the Department of Coastal Management that address this issue. Therefore, no further action is required from the Planning & Zoning Board.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously

5.   Discussion and Possible Action on Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Section 157: Zoning Code (Accessory Uses) – Mayor Holden

Agenda Packet – pages 31 – 40

No platted lot shall be occupied by more than one principal building. No part of a yard, court, or other open space provided about any building or structure for the purpose of complying with the provisions of this chapter shall be included as a part of a yard or other open space required under this chapter for another building or structure. A residence shall always constitute a principal use.

Update –
Alan introduced the topic, but Timbo explained the issue. Basically, you can’t have an accessory structure before you have a primary structure. Property owners are required to have a bulkhead, but you can’t have a floating dock or pier without the principal structure which is the house.  Changes in the state law have made piers and docks an accessory structure.  The Board requested that Timbo to come back to them with proposed changes to the ordinance concerning accessory uses for the Board to review.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously

6.  Discussion and Possible Scheduling of a Date to Hold a Public Hearing for the 2023 – 2024 Public Beach and Waterfront Access Grant (Block Q) – Assistant Town Manager Ferguson

Agenda Packet – page 41

The town was invited to submit a final application for the Block Q restroom facility as part of the 2023-24 Public Beach and Waterfront Access Grant Program. Final applications are due Monday, August 28. Staff suggests that the board hold the required public hearing at the beginning of the August l 5th  meeting for the process.

Update –
The Board scheduled a Public Hearing at the beginning of the next Regular Meeting in August.

7.   Sewer  Lift Station 2/EPA Grant Update  –  Assistant Town Manager Ferguson  

Agenda Packet – page 42

The town engaged with the new project coordinator with EPA and to date met all requirements until we hear back about the NEPA review and whether it is needed for this project. Since we are working on someone else’s timeline , the borrowing calendar will not mesh with the construction and federal calendars to complete the project this year. If the town wants to continue to move toward the EPA grant funding, we will need to postpone the project for one year. As an alternative, the town could choose to fund the entire project to achieve a deliverable of construction this winter.

Grant Update » click here

Update –
This is one of the Congressional earmarks for $2,669,867 for the Greensboro Street Lift Station #2 Hazard Mitigation Project. Despite the federal budget appropriation and that that  the grant was Congressional directed we still have to apply for the money. The Board was given two (2) options, either to move forward with grant funding and postpone the project or the town would need to fund the entire project. Town staff all seemed to lean towards walking away from the grant and proceeding with the project now. Andrew our financial advisor remotely joined the meeting and gave them additional input. Unfortunately, based on the timelines they were given the decision has to be made tonight. The federal share is $2,669,867  and our  match would be at least $667,467 for a total of $3,337,334. They decided to forego the grant money and proceed with the project paying for it through town funding only. David said that the Water/Sewer Fund has funds of $3,869,859. The recommendation is to do a fifty-fifty split between cash and borrowing. It was a difficult decision for them, either way people were going to be unhappy with whatever they decided to do. The Board struggled with the decision weighing waiting for the grant funds vs. moving forward now to prevent not having an operating sewer system should it be destroyed in a storm event. Tentatively construction would start as soon as this October. A lot of moving parts and Town Manager Hewitt explained that this was a very compressed schedule, and we may not be able to make it work as planned. The motion was made to proceed with self-funding for this critical asset of the island.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously

Animated Image of a Old Man with My Two Cents TextJust to be clear, we just walked away from a $2,669,867 grant for lift station #2

8. Discussion and Possible Selection of Members to Serve on Town Boards – Town Clerk Finnell

Agenda Packet – pages 43 – 46, plus separate packet

Interviews for people interested in serving on various Town boards are scheduled for July 18th at 4:45p.m. Just a reminder that current members are not normally interviewed again, so I did not ask them to be at the meeting. Below is a breakdown of the vacancies on each board.

Parks & Recreation Advisory Board: There are four terms expiring. They are all eligible and willing to serve another term.

Planning & Zoning Board: There are two alternate member terms and one regular member term expiring . Alternate members Mark Francis and Aldo Rovito are eligible and willing to serve another term. One of them could be moved to a regular member position if the Board desires since regular member Greg Shue has already served two terms.

Board of Adjustment: There are three regular member terms and two alternate member terms expiring. All the current members are eligible and willing to serve another term. There is also a vacant alternate position.

If the Board would like to assign additional terms to the current eligible members, I would recommend the Board make a motion to appoint the current eligible members of the Board of Adjustment and Parks & Recreation Advisory Board to serve another term. I would suggest that the Board vote on the Planning & Zoning Board in a separate motion or by ballot in order to accommodate filling the vacancy of the Regular Member (potentially with one of the current alternate members). Ballots will be supplied at the meeting if the Board desires to vote by ballot.

Separate Applicant Packet » click here

No regular member shall serve for more than two consecutive terms, and a member having served two consecutive terms shall not be eligible for reappointment until after remaining off the Board for one year.

Update –
The Board reappointed everyone that was eligible. On the Board of Adjustment, they selected Aldo Rovito as a regular member of the Board.

The Board selected the following candidates to fill the vacancies:

Parks & Recreation
Grace Bannerman
Melanie Champion
Mike Pearson
Candace Vick

Planning & Zoning
Aldo Rovito
Mark Francis / alternate
Ashley Royal / alternate

Board of Adjustment
Anne Arnold
Marylou Lahren
Phil Caldwell
Rick McInturff
Richard Roberts

A decision was made – Approved unanimously

Animated Image of a Old Man with My Two Cents Text

I’m of the opinion that our Board term policy unnecessarily creates vacancies.

Volunteers Needed
The Town has vacancies on several of the Town Boards. Interviews for the vacancies will be held on Tuesday, July 18th at 4:45 p.m. Click here to access an application if you are interested in applying to serve. Completed applications can be emailed to [email protected] or dropped off at Town Hall.

9. Promotional Video for Dogs on the Beach –   Asst. Town Manager Ferguson        

Agenda Packet – page 47

As part of the campaign to address dogs on the beach, the staff asked Dr. Dyer to provide some educational information regarding the dangers of dogs on the beach during the hours of 9:00a.m. to 5:00p.m. The video will be unveiled at the meeting and launched to the public.

Dogs on the Beach Video » click here

Update –
Commissioner Dyer a veterinarian created an educational video about pet safety on the beach strand for the public that debuted here tonight, it is posted on the Town’s website.

10.  Town Manager’s Report

Financial Report
David gave a budget slide presentation of the quarterly budget report as of end of June (fourth quarter/end of year) with a brief explanation of each fund balance. It’s all good! Budget is posted on the Town website.

June Statement » click here

Budget Report » click here

In Case You Missed It –

2022 Consumer Confidence Report
The 2022 Consumer Confidence Report is now available. Click here to view the water quality results.

Hurricane Season
Today is the official start to the hurricane season in the Atlantic. 

Would your family be prepared in the event of a hurricane? Click here to visit the Emergency Information section of our website. You will find helpful tips to implement now, before the threat of a storm. 

Please make sure you have your vehicle decals in place now. Do not wait! These decals are necessary for re-entry to the island in the event of an emergency situation that restricts access to the island. Click here for more information on decals. 

Pets on the beach strand
Pets – Chapter 90 / Animals / §90.20
Pets must be on a leash at all times on the island.
From May 20th through September 10th
It is unlawful to have any pet on the beach strand
. * During the hours of 9:00am through 5:00pmSolid Waste GFL Pick-Up Schedule

Solid Waste Pick-up Schedule
starting the Saturday before Memorial Day (May 27th) twice a week


starting after Memorial Day (May 23rd) weekly pick-up

National Flood Insurance Program: Reauthorization
Congress must periodically renew the NFIP’s statutory authority to operate. On December 23, 2022, the President signed legislation passed by Congress that extends the National Flood Insurance Program’s (NFIP’s) authorization to September 30, 2023.

 Upcoming Events –

Concerts on the Coast SeriesConcerts 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 

General Comments –

Commissioner Gerald Arnold  – was not in attendance (AGAIN)
* He has missed four (4) out of the seven (7) BOC’s Regular Meetings so far this year

BOC’s Meeting

BOC’s Meeting
The Board of Commissioners’ next Regular Meeting is scheduled on the third Tuesday of the month, August 15th

Municipal Elections » click here

Filing for Municipal Office
In Brunswick County, municipal elections are held in odd-numbered years to elect governing officials (mayors, city councils, town councils). The municipal election is open to residents who live in the municipality and must have lived in the district for at least 30 days before Election Day. The two-week filing period for municipal elections has ended. Candidates were able to file for municipal office from noon Friday July 7th until noon Friday, July 21st. The following candidates have officially filed for Holden Beach municipal elections before the deadline.

Holden Beach Mayor
Mike Felmly                            137 Carolina Avenue              Holden Beach
Alan Holden                           128 OBW                                   Holden Beach     (incumbent)

Holden Beach Commissioner
Gerald Arnold                        193 Yacht Watch                     Holden Beach     (incumbent)
Jim Bauer                                329 OBW                                  Holden Beach
Page Dyer                               149 Scotch Bonnet                   Holden Beach     (incumbent)
Brian Murdock                      3003 Holden Beach Road       Supply                  (incumbent)
Tom Myers                             301 OBW                                   Holden Beach
Maria Surprise                      159 OBE                                    Holden Beach
Tracey Thomas                      109 Frigate Drive                    Holden Beach

Holden Beach Commissioner (unexpired)
Richard McInturf                  122 Frigate Drive                    Holden Beach
Rick Paarfus                           140 Tarpon Drive                   Holden Beach
Sylvia Pate                              111 Charlotte Street               Holden Beach

Commissioner Smith did not need to file for office since he has two (2) years left of his four (4) year term.

Sylvia Pate, Rick Paarfus and Richard McInturf are running for the unexpired term of Commissioner Kwiatkowski which has two (2) years left of the four (4) year term.

Board of Commissioners Duties and Responsibilities include:

      • adopting the annual budget
      • establishing the annual tax rate
      • enacting local ordinances and Town policies
      • formulating policies for the conduct of Town operations
      • making appointments to advisory boards and committees
      • oversee long range plans for the community

Previously reported – June 2017

Staggered Terms – Appointing the members of Boards so that all the members do not change at the same time because their terms expire at different times.

Advantage of Staggered Terms – Help preserve institutional memory by not allowing total rotation of the leadership at one time. Good institutional memory generally improves decision-making and promotes the continuity of good practices and programs.

Reinstitute Staggered Terms –
Holden Beach and Bolivia are the only Brunswick County town governments that do not have staggered terms. The Board normally would have two (2) options on how they could make a change back to staggered terms. We will need to do a referendum for it to be in effect before the November 2017 elections. It will take two election cycles to fully implement. Justification given is to preserve continuity.

Referendum – a general vote by the electorate on a single political question that has been referred to them for a direct decision.

By unanimous vote, the Board of Commissioners approved the crafting of a resolution that would put the proposed changes to voters as a referendum on the ballot in November of 2017. If the referendum is approved the staggered terms would be implemented after the November of 2019 election. To be clear, only registered voters of Holden Beach would get to vote on the referendum.

Previously reported – July 2017

Agenda Packet –

Section 2. At the regular municipal election to be held on November 5, 2019, the three commissioner candidates who   receive the   highest number   of votes shall be elected for four-year terms, while the two commissioner candidates who receive the next highest   number   of votes shall be elected for two-year terms.  At the regular municipal election to be held in 2021, and every four years thereafter, two commissioners on the Board of Commissioners shall be elected to serve for four­ year terms. At the regular municipal election to be held in 2023, and every four years thereafter, three commissioners of the Board of Commissioners shall be elected to four-year terms.

Previously reported – November 2017
The referendum was approved so we will implement the four-year staggered terms beginning in 2019.

Animated Image of a Old Man with My Two Cents Text

The municipal election is open to residents who live in the municipality. By live in the municipality it says “the address to which you intend to return”.  All of the candidates declare Holden Beach as their primary residence.

I do not believe that some of them actually live here as required.

Budget   Budget        
We did not have adequate BPART funds available to cover the 1.13 million budgeted for pier property improvements. So, they needed money from the General Fund to cover the shortfall. By approving the transfer of $783K from the General Fund to balance the BPART budget they are allowing property tax money to be used for the pier property. The Local Government Commission (LGC) examines whether the amount of money a local government borrows is adequate and reasonable for its’ proposed projects, and it also confirms if the government can reasonably afford to repay the debt.

The North Carolina Local Government Commission approved the town of Holden Beach’s request for a $3.3 million loan to pay for the Holden Beach Fishing Pier after a February 2022 meeting which was attended by Town Manager Hewett,, Mayor Holden and Mayor Pro Tem Rick Smith. These THB representatives told the LGC that the Town would not use property tax revenue for pier property repairs or renovations. Any pier property expenses would be paid for by a combination of occupancy tax and paid parking revenue in addition to any grants that we secured. They further assured us (the public) repeatedly that the Town would not raise taxes or impose assessments to pay for the pier property project. Despite all the “promises”, they just raised our taxes and essentially moved that revenue to the BPART account to pay for the pier property project. Basically, they are running a shell game on us. They are spending more than we are bringing in and covering it with transfers and fund balance appropriations from our savings. 

The details in the final budget are:

    • $431,940 is being withdrawn from the General Fund Balance savings into the General Fund to cover expenses being paid out of that account
    • $783,083 is being transferred from the General Fund to the BPART fund to cover a portion of the expenses being paid out of the BPART account
    • $346,920 is being transferred to BPART from the Beach & Inlet Capital Reserve Fund savings to cover a portion of the expenses being paid out of the BPART account
    • $493,273 is being withdrawn from the BPART Fund Balance savings to cover the remaining expenses paid out of BPART that aren’t covered by the other two transfers listed

It is the Budget Officer’s  responsibility to propose a balanced budget ordinance per The Local Government Budget and Fiscal Control Act.  It is the BOC’s primary responsibility to consider and ultimately approve a budget that addresses their priorities without mortgaging our future. Unfortunately, that is not what happened this year! But Wait, There’s More! If we have a revenue shortfall (very likely) from either occupancy tax or paid parking or if we have any unexpected expenses (probable) we are going to be in a world of hurt.

Audit Committee Chair

Appointment terms. The Chairman of the BOC Audit Committee shall be elected by the BOC at the first regular meeting in January.

The Audit Committee is comprised of a member of the Board of Commissioners, the commissioner shall be appointed to the Audit Committee by the Board. Commissioner Kwiatkowski was the Chairman, but she resigned in March. We are required to have a Chairman of the Audit Committee and it is time to fill the vacant spot. Not only have they not selected a member of the Board to serve as Audit Committee Chairman they haven’t even bothered to discuss the matter yet.


Previously reported – June 2021

   (A)   The purpose of this regulation is to establish what may be placed in street rights-of-way which are cleared by installation or repair of utilities, streets, or walkways.  This regulation is not intended to remove or destroy landscaping or structures which are presently in place.  Landscaping in street rights-of-way:

      (1)   Must not present a safety hazard;

      (2)   Must not impede traffic;

      (3)   Is placed at the risk of the individual; and

      (4)   Is encouraged.

Timbo had pictures and a video to show what property owners have put up in the rights-of-way. Many were not in compliance with the ordinance. So why hasn’t he enforced any ordinance noncompliance?

The ordinance as written states:

    • “must not present a safety hazard” so we can address any safety issues without any changes
    • “post and rope not to exceed 24 inches from grade” so we can enforce any noncompliance

The Ordinance is vague, if it stands as is written then perhaps, we should clarify exactly what can be done

    • Size of posts used
    • Minimum setback from the street

Previously reported – June 2022
Pat presented some proposed changes to the current Post and Rope ordinance. This was simply a discussion of the variables that need to be considered. All these things need to be worked out in order to put together an ordinance.

They agreed that it needs to be standardized, and easily understood by the public. The Town Manager will get feedback from the League of Municipality before they proceed.

Update – July 2023
It’s over two (2) years later and all things are as they were …
We identified properties that were not in compliance, and nothing was done
I’m not an attorney, but I believe this goes from being a liability to negligence

Liability – the state of being responsible for something, especially by law

Negligence – failure to take proper care that a reasonably prudent person would exercise in like circumstances

Maybe we should try getting ordinance compliance at least on safety hazards.

Ya think?

Well, this is embarrassing

Well, this is embarrassing …

Critical error on our website when we updated to WordPress PHP version 8.0

GoDaddy has not been able to completely restore website yet

Please accept my humble apology for any inconvenience this may cause.


Hurricane Season
For more information » click here.

Be prepared – have a plan!


Emergency Preparedness

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

Here’s why this hurricane season could be unusually unpredictable
El Niño typically means a quieter hurricane season. As ocean temperatures rise, that could be changing.
Under normal circumstances, a quiet Atlantic hurricane season would be a safe bet this year: The global climate pattern known as El Niño is fast developing, and it’s known to diminish tropical cyclone activity in the Atlantic basin. But unusually warm waters — in some areas setting records for this time of year — could cancel that out, creating conditions that could instead fuel an active season of revved-up storms. That means the outlook for tropical cyclone risks is significantly more complicated just ahead of this year’s season beginning June 1. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration scientists are expected to factor that uncertainty heavily into a hurricane season forecast that will be released Thursday. Seasonal forecasting is always difficult, but it’s even harder to predict which of the competing influences will win out in the months ahead. “There’s not a lot of historic precedence for this,” said Philip Klotzbach, lead hurricane researcher at Colorado State University. As the season plays out against the backdrop of global warming — which has driven a flurry of storms that intensify quickly into devastating hurricanesmeteorologists remind people that it only takes one extreme storm to turn even a quiet season catastrophic.
Unusual ocean warmth raises storm risks
Hurricane season is set to begin with an already established trend of ocean warming that has been building since early March. By the heart of hurricane season in late summer and early fall, waters around the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico and Southeast U.S. coast are always bathwater-like. That warmth could be especially pronounced this year. “Those warm anomalies should, if anything, get stronger,” Klotzbach said. That is bad news for hurricane risks. Warm water is a necessary ingredient for tropical cyclones, and the warmer the water, the greater the potential for extremely strong hurricanes. The warmth translates to increased moisture in the air and greater available energy for a storm to unleash. And the recent ocean warming is grabbing climate scientists’ attention because of both its timing and its widespread appearance. It’s normal for ocean temperatures to rise along the surface of parts of the central and eastern Pacific when El Niño develops — something scientists have been observing off the western coast of South America in recent months. Those changes in sea surface temperatures and in winds across the Pacific have domino effects around the world and can trigger weather extremes. But the ocean warming observed as of late has developed in areas besides those Pacific hot spots — including parts of the Atlantic key for hurricane development. The deep tropics between the Caribbean and West Africa are significantly warmer than normal, something that could encourage any atmospheric disturbances moving into the Atlantic from Africa to organize and strengthen into tropical cyclones, said Brian McNoldy, senior research associate at the University of Miami and hurricane expert for Capital Weather Gang. “When waves come off of Africa, if they get that kick right away, that might help them form a little quicker,” McNoldy said. And though El Niño is known for accelerating planetary warming, the ocean trends are appearing well ahead of the climate pattern shift. Climate scientists don’t expect El Niño to arrive in earnest until some time in the coming weeks or months.
El Niño’s influence adds uncertainty
The ocean warmth notwithstanding, El Niño typically brings meteorologists a modicum of confidence in a quieter-than-average Atlantic hurricane season. It’s part of the cascade of impacts El Niño can have on weather patterns around the world. El Niño is associated with towering clouds and a rising motion in the lower atmosphere over the central and eastern Pacific, something that changes atmospheric circulation patterns in a way that tends to send dry, sinking air over the central Atlantic. That means diminished activity in the tropical zones is key for cyclone formation and development. The circulation patterns associated with El Niño also tend to bring an increase in wind shear, or a contrast in wind speeds and direction at different altitudes, over the Atlantic. High wind shear makes it difficult for storm systems to organize into classic cyclones with defined eyes surrounded by intense winds. Those factors have prompted some early hurricane season forecasts to call for below-normal storm activity. An average Atlantic hurricane season has about 14 named storms, half of which strengthen into hurricanes, according to data from 1991 through 2020. About three hurricanes a year become “major” storms, with maximum sustained winds of at least 111 mph. Klotzbach’s team at Colorado State’s Tropical Meteorology Project in April cited a budding El Niño in predicting that this season’s tallies would come short of those averages, with 13 named storms, 6 hurricanes and two major hurricanes. But the forecast also noted the outlook contained “more uncertainty than normal.” The team will offer an updated forecast June 1. Some forecasters are eyeing chances for increased tropical activity given the unusually warm Atlantic waters. The Weather Company, which owns and Weather Underground, and weather data company Atmospheric G2 predicted a near-normal season, with average hurricane activity and 15 named storms. They said in a hurricane season forecast released last month that the ocean temperature trend “gives one pause when relying on the potential El Niño event to keep the season quiet.”
Risks of a damaging season persist
That hesitation is especially true given caution from scientists over whether El Niño predictions will pan out. It is notoriously difficult to predict its development and trajectory when evaluating climate conditions during the Northern Hemisphere springtime. Even if El Niño forms as expected, weather forecasting models suggest wind shear may remain relatively limited even through the heart of hurricane season, Klotzbach said. And an active and damaging season could still develop if El Niño arrives later than expected, or in a weaker form, he added. Besides, meteorologists urge coastal residents to remain storm-ready even in quieter-than-average hurricane seasons. They stress that conditions can allow for devastating storms to make landfall despite larger climatic trends. That warning could be especially apt given the atmospheric battles meteorologists predict in the tropics between El Niño-fueled wind shear and a surge of ocean warmth. “There’s just no way of knowing which of those is going to be more important in any given week,” McNoldy said.
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NOAA predicts a near-normal 2023 Atlantic hurricane seasonNOAA predicts a near-normal 2023 Atlantic hurricane season
El Nino, above-average Atlantic Ocean temperatures set the stage
NOAA forecasters with the Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service, predict near-normal hurricane activity in the Atlantic this year. NOAA’s outlook for the 2023 Atlantic hurricane season, which goes from June 1 to November 30, predicts a 40% chance of a near-normal season, a 30% chance of an above-normal season and a 30% chance of a below-normal season. NOAA is forecasting a range of 12 to 17 total named storms (winds of 39 mph or higher). Of those, 5 to 9 could become hurricanes (winds of 74 mph or higher), including 1 to 4 major hurricanes (category 3, 4 or 5; with winds of 111 mph or higher). NOAA has a 70% confidence in these ranges. The upcoming Atlantic hurricane season is expected to be less active than recent years, due to competing factors — some that suppress storm development and some that fuel it — driving this year’s overall forecast for a near-normal season. After three hurricane seasons with La Nina present, NOAA scientists predict a high potential for El Nino to develop this summer, which can suppress Atlantic hurricane activity. El Nino’s potential influence on storm development could be offset by favorable conditions local to the tropical Atlantic Basin. Those conditions include the potential for an above-normal west African monsoon, which produces African easterly waves and seeds some of the stronger and longer-lived Atlantic storms, and warmer-than-normal sea surface temperatures in the tropical Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea which creates more energy to fuel storm development. These factors are part of the longer term variability in Atlantic atmospheric and oceanic conditions that are conducive to hurricane development — known as the high-activity era for Atlantic hurricanes — which have been producing more active Atlantic hurricane seasons since 1995. “With a changing climate, the data and expertise NOAA provides to emergency managers and partners to support decision-making before, during and after a hurricane has never been more crucial,” said NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad, Ph.D. “To that end, this year we are operationalizing a new hurricane forecast model and extending the tropical cyclone outlook graphic from five to seven days, which will provide emergency managers and communities with more time to prepare for storms.”

This summer, NOAA will implement a series of upgrades and improvements. NOAA will expand the capacity of its operational supercomputing system by 20%. This increase in computing capability will enable NOAA to improve and run more complex forecast models, including significant model upgrades this hurricane season:

    • In late June, the Hurricane Analysis and Forecast System (HAFS) will become operational. HAFS will run this season in tandem with the currently operational Hurricane Weather Research and Forecast Model System and Hurricanes in a Multi-scale Ocean-coupled Non-hydrostatic model, but eventually will become NOAA’s primary hurricane model. Retrospective analysis of tropical storms and hurricanes from the 2020-2022 seasons show that this model has a 10-15% improvement in track forecasts over existing operational models. This new model was jointly created by NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic & Meteorological Laboratory Hurricane Modeling and Prediction Program and NOAA’s National Weather Service Environmental Modeling Center.
    • The Probabilistic Storm Surge model upgrade on May 2, advances storm surge forecasting for the contiguous U.S. and new forecasts for surge, tide and waves for Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Forecasters now have the ability to run the model for two storms simultaneously. This model provides forecasters with the likelihood, or probability, of various flooding scenarios including a near worst-case scenario to help communities prepare for all potential outcomes.

Additional upgrades or new tools for hurricane analysis and forecasting include:

    • The National Hurricane Center’s Tropical Weather Outlook graphic, which shows tropical cyclone formation potential, has expanded the forecast range from five to seven days.
    • Over the last 10 years, flooding from tropical storm rainfall was the single deadliest hazard. To give communities more time to prepare, the Weather Prediction Center is extending the Excessive Rainfall Outlook an additional two days, now providing forecasts up to five days in advance. The outlook shows general areas at risk for flash flooding due to excessive rainfall.
    • The National Weather Service will unveil a new generation of forecast flood inundation mapping for portions of Texas and portions of the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast in September 2023. These forecast maps will extend to the rest of the U.S. by 2026. Forecast flood inundation maps will show the extent of flooding at the street level.

NOAA will continue improving new and current observing systems critical in understanding and forecasting hurricanes. Two projects underway this season include:

“As we saw with Hurricane Ian, it only takes one hurricane to cause widespread devastation and upend lives. So regardless of the number of storms predicted this season, it is critical that everyone understand their risk and heed the warnings of state and local officials. Whether you live on the coast or further inland, hurricanes can cause serious impacts to everybody in their path,” said FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell. “Visit or for readiness resources and get real time emergency alerts by downloading the FEMA App. Actions taken today can save your life when disaster strikes. The time to prepare is now.”

NOAA’s outlook is for overall seasonal activity and is not a landfall forecast. In addition to the Atlantic seasonal outlook, NOAA also issues seasonal hurricane outlooks for the eastern Pacific and central Pacific hurricane basins. NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center will update the 2023 Atlantic seasonal outlook in early August, just prior to the historical peak of the season.
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A guide for hurricane season in the Wilmington area:
Supplies, shelters, evacuations and more
It’s never too early to prepare for hurricane season. And as the Atlantic hurricane season begins on June 1, here are things to know to stay safe in the Wilmington area.
Twenty coastal counties in North Carolina have established predetermined evacuation zones to simplify the coastal evacuation process in the event of an emergency. Everyone living or vacationing in North Carolina’s coastal areas should know your zone.

Preparing for a hurricane — What you need to know about evacuations

Hurricane kit
Everyone usually remembers food and water, but what about medicine, insurance policies (home and auto), and other important documents?  Here is a list of supplies and documents you should have ready in your “go bag” or supply kit, according to FEMA and the American Red Cross.

Are you prepared for a hurricane? Here’s a list of supplies to have in your hurricane kit.

Pet friendly shelters
If you need to evacuate and want to take your pets with you, several emergency management services will open emergency shelters at local schools if a hurricane should hit.

Where to find pet friendly hurricane shelters in the Wilmington area

Hurricane watch or warning?
Living in coastal North Carolina, most people know when hurricane season begins. But it’s also important to know the difference between a hurricane watch and a hurricane warning.

Watch or warning:
What’s the difference between a hurricane watch and warning?
Here’s more on the difference.

Wilmington’s worst storms
Take a look back at hurricane activity for the worst storms to ever hit the Wilmington area. Names such as Hazel and Florence will forever be etched to the region.

Also check out the list of names for the 2023 hurricane season.

Worst hurricanes:
What are the 5 worst hurricanes to ever hit the Wilmington area?

2023 names:
Here’s the list of names for the 2023 Atlantic hurricane season.

Up-to-date weather
There are several webcams following weather on the coast. Here are a few of them. You can also follow a storm from its beginnings to now with this storm tracker.

Weather webcams:
Check the latest weather conditions via these webcams along the NC coast

Track the storm:
See where the storm is in real time

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