Townhall Icon, a Place for Town Meeting, Lous Views

04 – Town Meeting

Lou’s Views

“Unofficial” Minutes & Comments

BOC’s Special Meeting 04/12/24

Board of Commissioners’ Agenda Packet » click here

Audio Recording » click here

1.   Fire Department Organization and Functions – Fire Chief Todd

Agenda Packet – background information was not provided

Previously reported January 2023
The Tri-Beach VFD has been using the four bay Town owned building at 572 Ocean Boulevard West for a number of years to house fire apparatus that is used for firefighting, emergency medical calls and rescue calls on the island and off the island as needed. Housing the equipment on the island has been beneficial to Town of Holden Beach residents and vacationers on the island. Currently, staffing by the department is in place twelve hours a day (7:00 AM to 7:00 PM) during the summer months typically from Memorial Day to Labor Day. The rest of the year, 24-hour staff responds to calls on the island from the off-island fire stations. Due to the increase in permanent residents and renters staying on the island, before Memorial Day, during the summer, and after Labor Day, emergency calls on the island are on the increase. Tri-Beach is working on a plan to provide sufficient staff to man Station 2, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week all year. This will improve the response time to calls on the island during the entire year. To safely house staff 24 hours/7 days a week, upgrades to Station 2 will be necessary. The Board of Directors of the Tri-Beach Volunteer Fire Department is formally requesting the Town  of Holden Beach to put a plan in place to upgrade (or replace) the existing Station 2 building to provide the necessary facilities (such as a bunk room, kitchen, flood resistance, etc.) to support safely housing onsite staff for 24 hours a day. The Tri-Beach Chief officers and staff stand ready to assist Town personnel in the planning and execution of upgrading the Station 2 building to provide enhanced fire, emergency medical and rescue services to the residents and vacationers in the Town of Holden Beach. Please respond to the Board of Directors as soon as possible so that we can all move forward on this plan.

Fire Department Presentation » click here

Assistant Chief David Ward of the Tri-Beach Fire Department made the presentation. As a representative of the fire department, he was there to justify the request for them to either upgrade or replace the existing fire station. Call volumes have significantly increased, and they would like to staff the fire station on the island around the clock all year long so they can adequately provide protection to the public. Timbo pointed out that this is a critical facility and impacts our Community Rating System score which reduces our homeowners insurance costs. The Board members agreed that they need to create a committee so they can make an educated decision about what they should do. Mayor Holden requested additional information from the fire department to know what their options are before they proceed.

No decision was made – No action taken

Previously reported February 2023
Follow-up to the last meeting request for additional information. The current location is situated pretty much where it needs to be. The fire station could be placed between Fayetteville Street  and the eight hundred block on OBW, which is  based on a five (5) mile maximum service area. Basically, the fire station needs to stay where it’s at on Starfish Drive. That said, as their equipment gets larger he questioned whether the site was big enough to accommodate the larger vehicles. There was not any discussion about moving forward or creating a committee.
TRI Beach Fire Department, Logo and Name
Growth in Holden Beach prompts potential changes for emergency responses
Town commissioners could soon consider changes to be a critical part of the town’s emergency response. Commissioners heard from the Tri-Beach fire chief Tuesday about needed upgrades to the town’s fire station. It’s currently run mostly by volunteers and is only staffed during the day between May and September. Fire Chief Doug Todd said over the past few years, calls have increased in Holden Beach as more people spend time on the island year-round. When the town’s station isn’t staffed, the next closest station on the mainland responds, but getting to the west end of the island can take up to 15 minutes. The current building also does not have anywhere for staff to sleep or make food, and it often floods during major storms. Mayor Alan Holden said he hopes future upgrades could make the town safer. “We enjoy a great relationship with Brunswick County and the Tri-Beach Fire Department and we’re looking forward to making that an even better relationship,” Holden said. “Through that, we have to provide all the services that we can provide for them so they can help us.” Holden also said he’s proud of the growth the town and Brunswick County have seen in recent years. Commissioners have discussed putting together a committee to further analyze possible upgrades or replacements for the current fire station. They did not take action during Tuesday’s meeting.
Read more » click here

Update –
Chief Todd briefly reviewed staffing and budget issues. He stated that fire fees are not adequate to meet their financial needs. The fire fees have been in place since 2017 and are based on the square footage of the home. The contract covering us has been in place since 2003 and is still viable. They made two hundred and eighteen (218) calls on the island last year. He also touched on the status of their equipment, the replacement cost and a several year lead time. Rating is impacted by staffing, training, and equipment, which is not scheduled again till 2027. Currently, staffing by the department is in place twelve hours a day (7:00 AM to 7:00 PM) during the summer months typically from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Chief Todd committed to have staffing on the island twenty-four (24) hours a day, seven (7) days a week, all year long, only if we build a new fire station. The current building is past its useful life, the current site is acceptable to rebuild at and Timbo confirmed it is doable there.

2.   Discussion and Possible Action on Division of Water Resources’ Grant for Lockwood Folly Dredging – Assistant Town Manager Ferguson
Resolution 24-04 – Water Resources Development Grant Resolution
.   b.
Ordinance 24-05, An Ordinance Amending Ordinance 23-11, the Revenues                 and Appropriations Ordinance for Fiscal Year 2023 – 2024 (Amendment No. 5)

Agenda Packet – pages 1 – 11

Discussion and possible action in adopting a resolution for submission of a DWR grant. The grant is for dredging of the Lockwood Folly Inlet using the Miss Katie.

The town was contacted about the availability of the Miss Katie to accompany the sidecast operation of the Corps scheduled in May with a follow up hopper operation. Should the Corps not be able to keep their calendar the Miss Katie could perform the sidecast and hopper functions prior to our main tourist season.

a huge ship on the sea with the US Flag

The attached resolution (attachment 1) is necessary to apply for grant funding through the State of North Carolina for a dredging project to aid deteriorating inlet conditions. The Corps revealed they plan to conduct a sidecast dredge operation in May using the Merritt. The Town was previously successful in obtaining a shallow draft inlet permit and is equipped to perform this operation should the Corps schedule vary, as well as, having hopper dredge capabilities using the Miss Katie in conjunction with this project. Using the hopper dredge will allow for a better end product for the upcoming tourist season and the dredge results to last longer than simply using the Merritt alone. The Town has coordinated with Dare County and the Oregon Inlet Task Force to obtain permission to use the Miss Katie which is a requirement should the BOC want to engage in this endeavor. The navigability of the Lockwood Folly Inlet impacts the fishing industry in Brunswick County as well as the many residents and visitors to Holden Beach that utilize the inlet for recreational water pursuits. Tourist season is knocking on our door and safety is a paramount issue. The attached image (attachment 2) shows the latest Corps’ survey of inlet conditions. The resolution asks for $656,625 in state funding which is 75% of estimated project costs and would leave $218,875 as the projected local share of which Brunswick County has indicated a willingness to participate.

 Update –
Christy stated that the grant application and budget amendment were included in the packet. Apparently there is a sense of urgency and a number of obstacles that have to be overcome. Based on the time frame that we are working with she asked they make the motion to accept the resolution and budget amendment. In addition, they also need to give the Town Manager authority to execute the contracts. David stated that this is not a done deal and will require some heavy lifting to get it done.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously

Holden Beach seeks Miss Katie for inlet dredging
The Town of Holden Beach is seeking a state grant to help fund the dredging of the Lockwood Folly Inlet before tourist season arrives. During the Holden Beach Board of Commissioners’ April 12 special meeting, the board passed a resolution requesting state grant funding and a budget amendment for a Lockwood Folly Inlet dredging project. The project, if completed, will use the town’s Shallow Draft Permit and the Miss Katie dredge from Dare County and the Oregon Inlet Taskforce. The inlet was dredged using the Miss Katie last year due to the inlet’s emergency status. Whether this project will come to fruition is murky water, Town Manager David Hewett said. Assistant Town Manager Christy Ferguson said the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is ultimately responsible for dredging the inlet and plans to conduct a sidecast dredge operation in May using a dredge named the Merritt. Ferguson told the board that the town has requested the inlet be on a quarterly cycle for dredging. However, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have other projects and limited funding that affect when, or if, they can dredge the inlet before tourist seasons, she said. “There are a lot of obstacles in our way,” Ferguson said. The town must obtain permission from the Oregon Inlet Taskforce for the group to release the Miss Katie dredge, she said, noting the next task force meeting is not until May. The resolution requests $656,625 in state funding for the project. The estimated cost for the project is $875,500. The remaining balance of $218,875 would be paid for by the town and Brunswick County. “We can’t move forward without a grant because we don’t have the funds to do that… If we did not get the grant, we would not follow through with contracting,” Ferguson said. The grant process takes about 30 days and the town’s permit has environmental windows that are closing, she explained. The Miss Katie is the only tool available to the town under these circumstances, Hewett said. He noted it would be helpful to revise the town’s permit to allow year-round dredging to improve future inlet dredging situations. “The [Army Corps of Engineers] gets to do it anytime, but our permit has an environmental window,” Hewett said, noting the town has not nailed down details on a permit revision but may pursue a budget request for the revision next year. The town manager said he is not sure if the project will come to fruition. “It’s not a done deal. There’s still a bunch of work that’s got to be done,” he said. The board’s action includes submitting the resolution and grant paperwork to the state and giving the town manager authority to do all contracting paperwork if funding is granted. Contracting with the dredge would not come back before the board. More information can be found in the Holden Beach April meeting agenda at

Read more » click here

3.   Budget Workshop
.   a. General Fund Revenue
.   b. Tax Rate
.   c. BPART Fund Revenue

Agenda Packet – pages 12 – 15

Houston, we have a problem …

Until we pay of debt service we need to accept that we will have to
hold off on a lot of proposed projects

Commissioner Tracey Thomas was not in attendance

BOC’s Regular Meeting 04/30/24

Board of Commissioners’ Agenda Packet click here

Audio Recording » click here

1.   Conflict of Interest Check

2024 Rules of Procedure for the Holden Beach Board of Commissioners
(e) Conflict Check. Immediately after the approval of the agenda, the Presiding Officer shall poll each member to disclose any potential conflicts of interest. In the event that a potential conflict is disclosed, the members will vote on a motion to allow or excuse that member with respect to the agenda item. If excused, the member may not participate in any discussion, debate, or vote with respect to the agenda item.

The Board was polled by Mayor Holden. All of them declared that there was no conflict of interest with any agenda item at this meeting. 

2.   Public Comments on Agenda Items

There were comments made by five (5) members of the public at the meeting and additional comments were posted on the Town’s website
For more information
» click here

The Holden Beach Concerned Taxpayers Group
To better establish a cost for a new pier we asked for estimates from architect Chip Hemingway and Clancy & Theys Construction Company who are the builders of Jennette’s Pier in Nags Head, North Carolina. We need assistance from our state and federal governments to help defer the cost by making an investment in the future. Total cost estimate is $30,643,807 you can complete the parcel owners petition form on their website

3.   Police Report – Lieutenant Dilworth

Agenda Packet – pages 23 – 30

Police Report » click here

Police Patch
Business as usual, normal amount and type of activity for this time of year. 


The Ocean Boulevard paving project and bike lanes has been completed. Frank reminded everyone to watch their speed on the newly paved road,  the speed limit is only 35 mph. Also, the bike lane is not supposed to be a vehicle parking area.

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

      • Justin Hewett is our new Officer in the Police Department
      • Recruiting to fill Police Officer vacancy

Having the full complement of ten (10) police officers seems to be an elusive goal. 

Public Service Announcement –
Scams – be on guard, you need to protect yourself from scammers
Please do not send money when contacted via phone calls

NC residents lose millions to scammers: Report reveals top 10 scam categories
The 41-page report from the North Carolina Department of Justice examines artificial intelligence, the opioid crisis and its scam report.
People in North Carolina are losing millions of dollars each year to scammers, according to a report from the state Department of Justice. This 41-page report looks at everything from artificial intelligence to the opioid crisis – showing that just about any news event and spur scammers into action. The report breaks down the 10 scam categories you’re most likely to fall victim to, and some of the topics are not easy to avoid. The most common types of scams include telemarketing and robocalls, motor vehicles, credit, utilities, home improvement, the internet, landlord-tenant issues, insurance, personal service and real estate. In 2023, the North Carolina Department of Justice received hundreds and in many cases thousands of reports of scams in these arenas. Telemarketing and robocall scams were the most common, with 3,281 reports. Never give anyone your personal information and trust your gut if something feels off. Anyone who thinks they’ve been scammed in North Carolina can call 1-877-566-7226 or file a complaint on the Department of Justice’s website.

What he did not say –

Golf carts are considered a motor vehicle and subject to all laws, rules and regulations that govern motor vehicles

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

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

After five years, Holden Beach Police need new detective
After five years of waiting, Holden Beach’s Police Chief Jeremy Dixon has pleaded his case to the Holden Beach Board of Commissioners to fund a police detective position in the town’s fiscal year 2024-2025 budget. During the commissioners budget meeting on March 18, Dixon requested a detective position be approved and funded in the upcoming budget because the town needs a detective. Cases are going unsolved and suspects are not being interviewed because the town does not have anyone to do the work, he said. “It’s a bad look on the department and it makes me look terrible,” he said. Dixon told The Brunswick Beacon in October that his department is allotted a 10-person staff with one chief, one lieutenant, one sergeant and seven patrol officers. He said an ideal full staff would include eight patrol officers, two patrol sergeants, one detective, one lieutenant and one chief. If 13 officers were on staff, patrol shifts could be adequately covered, and investigations would be more thoroughly conducted, he added. “Our department has not been allotted a detective position,” he said in October. “Therefore, we have no dedicated investigator to follow-up on incident reports. This, in itself, is a disservice to the town.” Dixon told commissioners in March that the department has identified criminal suspects, but it has had no one to interview the suspects. Though officers are taking reports, there is no follow up to the reports and potentially solvable cases are being left untouched, he explained. “Trying to explain to our community that we cannot do our job because we do not have the resources is very stressful,” he told The Brunswick Beacon in October. A detective would allow the town to work on and possibly solve cases that require collaboration with other towns and counties. Some cases, such as breaking and entering, involve repeat offenders that jump from town to town and some suspects are from out of town, like Charlotte, and would require a detective to travel for an interview. If approved, Dixon said, the detective would have the time and resources to conduct interviews, investigate cases and even help the department as an extra patrol officer when needed. “The resources out there are vast if you have the person that’s dedicated to doing the job,” he added. Dixon was promoted to chief on April 1, 2019 and served as the last town detective. The position has not been funded since Dixon’s promotion; Town Clerk Heather Finnell told The Brunswick Beacon. Asked if the town is required to have a detective, Finnell said she does not know of any such requirement. Dixon told the board during the meeting that a detective could have investigated 90 cases in just the past two years. “In the last two years, 90 cases that somebody should have looked at better than we did,” he said. “Let’s say for instance a house is broken into. The officer responds and takes a report, and then the report goes nowhere,” he told The Brunswick Beacon in October. “There is no follow-up.” Commissioner Tracey Thomas questioned if highly intense investigative crimes, such as a murder, are handled by the county or state. “Things that happen inside this jurisdiction are the responsibility of the Holden Beach Police Department,” Dixon said in response. The Town of Holden Beach does not currently see many investigative crimes but, the chief explained, the police department does not have the staff to handle an increase in those crimes either. “God forbid those cases start rolling in, because there’s no one that has the time, specialty, expertise, training to go investigate those cases properly,” he said. Though the Town of Holden Beach has 10 police officer positions, only nine of those positions are filled. A detective could help and perform other officer duties like patrolling, the chief said. It would be easy for a detective to go on patrol but, he noted, it is “unrealistic” for a regular officer to conduct interviews with suspects and complete detective work. The board during its March 18 meeting did not take any action on the detective position. The Brunswick Beacon reached out to Chief Dixon multiple times for follow-up on his previous comments. Dixon did not respond to those inquiries prior to this paper’s publication on Monday morning, April 15. The March 18 meeting packet can be found on the Town of Holden Beach’s website at Video recordings of meetings can be found on the town’s website at or YouTube at
Read more » click here

Animated Image of a Old Man with My Two Cents Text

Although I support having a larger Police Department I cannot condone saying cases are going unsolved and suspects are not being interviewed because the town does not have anyone to do the work in the local newspaper. What was he thinking?

4.   Inspections Department Report – Inspections Director Evans

Agenda Packet – pages 31 – 33

Inspections Report » click here

ACTIVE NEW HOME PERMITS                                                                = 41
OTHER ACTIVE PERMITS                                                                         = 312
PERMITS ISSUED OVER $30,000                                                             = 45
PERMITS ISSUED OVER $100,000                                                           = 15
PERMITS ISSUED WAITING PICK UP                                                     = 16
TOTAL PERMITS                                                                                         = 369

PERMITS IN REVIEW                                                                                 = 4
CAMA ISSUED                                                                                             = 1
ZONING ISSUED                                                                                         = 6

PERMITS SERVICED FOR INSPECTIONS FROM 12/12-1/11                = 136
TOTAL INSPECTIONS MADE                                                                 = 507

Update –
Timbo briefly reviewed department activity last month, the department still remains extremely busy. He has a Americans with Disabilities Act/Key Bridge Mediation Agreement meeting scheduled and will report on the status of those items at the next scheduled Regular Meeting.

Same As It Ever Was

5.   Finance Department Report – Finance Officer McRainey

Agenda Packet – pages 34 – 36

Finance Report » click here

Three graphs were presented, with monthly comparisons of the following funds:
    1) General Fund
Water/Sewer Fund

BPART Fund – Beach Preservation / Access & Recreation / Tourism
BPART is a Special Revenue Fund authorized by act of the General Assembly which allows the Town to collect six cents of an Accommodations Tax for the purposes of funding beach preservation and tourism related expenses.

Update –
Funds are tracking similar to last year’s numbers.

6.   Discussion and Possible Action on Ordinance 24-06, An Ordinance Amending Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Title VII: Traffic Code – Town Clerk Finnell

Agenda Packet – pages 37 – 39

 Ordinance 24-06 » click here

Discussion and Possible Action on Ordinance 24-06, An Ordinance Amending the Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Title VII: Traffic Code

The proposed ordinance allows the Town to extend the paid parking program to year round. It also removes H63 from Section 72.02(8) to reflect the changes made at the March meeting.

Recommend approval if the Board would like year round parking.

Previously reported – March 2024
The first motion made was to extend the season and charge for parking year-round. The justification used was that the expenses that we incur are not seasonal. The counter argument made is that we have not provided the services we committed to yet and we should wait to do this until we provide these services.
A decision was made – Approved (3-2)
Commissioners Smith and Dyer opposed the motion

Update –
This Ordinance codified the motion that was made last month. It removes parking areas on McCray and extends the season charging  for parking year-round. The motion was made to approve it as submitted.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously

7.   Block Q
. a)
Discussion and Possible Action on the Block Q Site Plan –
.      Assistant Town Manager
. b)
Discussion and Possible Action on Constructing Bathrooms at Block Q –              .      Mayor Pro Tem Myers and Commissioner Thomas

Agenda Packet – pages 40 – 47


Discussion and possible action on the Block Q site plan. The PRAB worked on this concept design for several months which included holding special meetings.

The BOC directed the PRAB to work with the current architect to develop a new site plan for Block Q that includes a concert space with dance floor, the planned ADA compliant bathrooms, greenspace, and other potential amenities. Some items from the list were eliminated as part of the PRAB’s meeting discussion.

The members of the PRAB voted to adopt the Block Q plan presented at their last meeting and attached to this document.

BOC receive and favorably consider the PRAB’s conceptual plan.


The attached site plan (attachment 2) was developed in response to the tasker (attachment 3) sent from the BOC to the PRAB (Parks and Recreation Advisory Board). The PRAB held meetings, including special meetings over the last few months, working with the architect to develop what they deemed the best conceptual plan for the sit e. The final document considered the public feedback  they received throughout the process . The tasker mentioned things like playground equipment and food trucks and those were eliminated because Bridgeview Park already has equipment on site and food trucks could be positioned in other parts of Jordan Boulevard if the BOC voted for an ordinance change. There was also feedback from a local restaurant owner that this type of service would severely impact his business. The conceptual plan as presented does not show details like sidewalks or benches and picnic tables because their location could change based on final stormwater installation, etc.

Update –
The Parks and Recreation Advisory Board (PRAB) developed and presented a site plan for Block Q. Commissioner Parfus made the motion to accept/receive the work product from the PRAB while curtailing any further work from them on this project. The Board did not take action  since it does not address several important issues. Consensus is that the plan still requires additional work before we can move forward.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


Discussion and possible action on constructing bathrooms at Block Q

The Parks & Recreation Advisory Board (PRAB) has recommended a site plan for the development of Block Q, including bathrooms, a pavilion, and parking .

Block Q will be developed in phases.  This first  phase will only  involve the bathrooms  and  bathroom  parking since  a grant has been accepted for this work. Additional B1ock Q features  will  be developed  and approved  in future phases of work . Since this future work is still  tentative, at  this time storm  water plans  will only  be developed  for  the bathrooms and bathroom parking.

Possible Action:
Approval to move forward with construction of bathrooms at Block Q and the development of the associated storm water plans only for the bathroom and bathroom parking.

Previously reported – March 2024

Discussion and possible action in accepting a grant from NC Department of Environmental Quality for bathrooms, associated parking, site prep, and landscaping on Block Q (see memo for more details).

The BOC’s directed the staff to submit the grant in both a pre-application and final application process. The grant has been awarded and current action rests with the BOC.

Block Q Access Development (Bathrooms /Associated Parking)
The town applied for and has received a grant from DEQ through the NC Public Beach and Coastal Waterfront Access Program. The total of the grant is $560,000 of which the town’s obligation will be $140,000 to construct a restroom facility, associated parking, site prep and landscaping. There is a contractual obligation that we must maintain the facilities built using grant funds for 25 years. If the board accepts /approves the contract, a budget amendment would need to be adopted so that the funds can be recognized in this year’s budget. Since we will not be executing the project this fiscal year, they will be reappropriated in next fiscal year’s budget. Accepting the grant includes authorizing the manager to execute the grant paperwork.

The Board discussed whether or not to accept the grant at this time. The bottom-line is that we can’t put bathrooms on the site without doing stormwater work, an additional $300,000 expense, for the entire site. Motion was made to accept the grant and pass the associated budget amendment. They decided it was in our best interest to accept the grant now, so they can move forward with this project, and then work on modifying the stormwater plan.
A decision was made – Approved unanimously

Update –
Commissioner Thomas stated that since last month we accepted the grant for the bathrooms we should just spend money on this phase of the project. The motion was made to move forward with construction of the bathrooms there and the development of the associated storm water plans only for the bathroom and bathroom parking area. The Board instructed the town  staff to revise the stormwater plan to include only the stormwater work necessary for the bathrooms and associated parking as accepted in the grant.

A decision was made – Approved (3-2)
Commissioners Smith and Dyer opposed the motion

8.   Discussion and Possible Approval of Ordinance 24-07, An Ordinance Amending Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Section 92.32, Unlawful Lights – Inspections Director Evans

Agenda Packet – pages 48 – 51

Text Amendments to Light Ordinance 92.32

Revision of the Light Ordinance to remove conflicting portion of the ordinances.

Update –
Last month Timbo requested that the Board charge the Planning & Zoning Board to review our lighting ordinance. The Board tasked P&Z to address the issues Timbo has with that ordinance. Timbo informed them that what he presented is not a finished product. The Board has the opportunity to make any changes they want before the Public Hearing. We have modified this ordinance several times already without obtaining the desired effect. The primary change that was made this time is that P&Z  clarified the difference between holiday lights as opposed to decorative lighting so that ordinance is enforceable. The Board requested that Timbo work on the verbiage of a few items for additional clarity and bring the revised ordinance back to them at the next scheduled Regular Meeting.

No decision was made – No action taken

9.   Discussion and Possible Scheduling of a Date to Hold a Public Hearing on Ordinance 24-08, An Ordinance Amending the Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Chapter 154: Flood Damage Prevention – Inspections Director Evans

Agenda Packet – pages 52 – 62

Ordinance 24-08 » click here

Text Amendments to NFIP Section 154 of the Town’s Ordinance as recommended by FEMA. A Public Hearing needs to be scheduled.

Recommendations by FEMA and NC Department of Public Safety

After review, the Board of Commissioners has found that the recommended amendments are consistent with the adopted CAMA (Coastal Area Management Act) Land Use Plan and are considered reasonable and in the public interest for the following reasons.

Use of Property: The amendment as recommended by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the North Carolina Department of Public Safety to align better with the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) goals.

Update –
At the last annual evaluation, FEMA made several recommendations to the town that are simply text amendments to our Ordinance. The critical five (5)  year evaluation is this fall which could impact our Community Rating System (CRS) that impacts our insurance premium rates discount. The motion made was to move forward,  accept the submitted consistency statement, and schedule a Public Hearing before our June Regular Meeting.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously

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 Community Rating System
For more information » click here

10.  Discussion and Possible Action on the Transfer of Files and Papers from the Former Attorney – Mayor Pro Tem Myers and Commissioner Thomas

Agenda Packet – pages 63 – 64

Discussion and possible action on the transfer of files and papers from the former attorney. Discussion and possible action on selecting a new Town Attorney.

Our former attorney was terminated in January and has not transferred files or surrendered papers as required by the NC State Bar Rules of Professional Conduct. Our interim attorney has contacted the former attorney three times by  phone (on  Feb 8th,  Mar 12th,  and  Mar 21st ) and  twice by email (on  Feb  12th and 21st )    requesting  the documents. Enough time has now passed to refer this issue to the NC State Bar Attorney-Client assistance program.

Update –
Apparently our former attorney Richard Green turned over the documents requested earlier today. Therefore, there is no need to refer this issue to the NC State Bar Attorney-Client assistance program.

No decision was made – No action taken

11.  Discussion and Possible Action on Selecting a New Town Attorney – Mayor Pro Tem Myers and Commissioner Thomas

Agenda Packet – pages 63 – 64, plus separate packet

Attorney Proposals » click here

We have received responses to our RFP from multiple law firms and need to proceed with selecting a new Town Attorney .

Possible Action:

    • Determine finalist(s)
    • Schedule interviews, if needed
    • Instruct the Town to contact the Attorney-Client assistance program with the NC State Bar regarding the prompt transfer of files and surrender of papers from our former attorney

Update –
They have begun the process of hiring a permanent Town Attorney.  They discussed scheduling interviews including doing some remotely to avoid unnecessary travel. Town Clerk Finnell will contact the candidates to determine their availability for interviews.

12.  Discussion and Possible Action on Conflict-of-Interest Concerns Related to the Holden Beach Property Owners Association – Mayor Pro Tem Myers and Commissioner Thomas

Agenda Packet – pages 65 – 66

Attorney Determination » click here

Discussion and possible action on conflict-of-interest concerns related to the HBPOA

During the March BOC meeting, Commissioners Smith and Dyer raised concerns that the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) emails made it very apparent that there is a conflict of interest that exists with Commissioner Myers and Thomas in regards to matters related to the pier since they also serve on the board of the HBPOA, and because they are on the two different boards and they are discussing business about the pier, they think it would be a conflict of interest doing business as a board of the POA and then voting on it in the Town as a board. Therefore, they should recuse themselves from any vote related to the pier.

The Town Attorney stated that she had already cleared them of a conflict-of-interest for solely serving on the HBPOA board and offered to provide extra research reviewing the emails and the possibility of a conflict when voting on matters related to the pier.

That extra work has now been completed and the Town Attorney has made her determination.

Possible Action:
Accept the Town Attorney’s findings and determination related to the conflict-of-interest matter.

Moore Law

 During the Board of Commissioners meeting on March 19, 2024, this Board discussed conflicts of interest. As with any potential conflict of interest, I ask that you provide me with any and all information relevant to the potential conflict so said conflict may be explored in full. In North Carolina, a governing board member has a duty to vote and may only be excused from voting in specific situations allowed by statute. The North Carolina General Statutes (C .S.) allow governing board members to be excused from voting only on the following matters:

    • Matters involving the consideration of the member’s own official conduct of financial interest; or
    • Matters on which member is prohibited from voting under statutes :
    • When directly benefit under a public contract approved or considered by the Board (G.S 14- 234);
    • Zoning matters likely to have a “direct, substantial, and readily identifiable impact on the member” (G.S. 153A-340(g); S. 160A-38l(d)); and
    • Quasi-judicial decisions on land-use matters where member’s participation would violate the constitutional requirement of an impartial decision maker (G. lS3A-341.1; GS 160A- 888(e2))

In all of these matters. there are requirements necessitating some sort of gain, be it personal financial impact. personal interest, or direct benefit.

 After analyzing the statutes, Town Conflict of lnterest Policy, and other relevant literature , as well as reading every email distributed in the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Request for emails released in February 2024, there does not appear to be any direct benefit, personal impact or interest, or familial benefit directly related to any Town business that can be attributed to Commissioner Tom Myers or Commissioner Tracey Thomas. As a result, no conflicts of interest have been declared for Commissioners Myers and Thomas to serve on the Board of the HBPOA and on the Board of Commissioners for the Town of Holden Beach.

 Given the subject matter of this letter , I believe it is best that I also formally inform the public and the Board that I have no ties to the HBPOA. I have never been hired by or worked for the HBPOA in any capacity. I am not a member of the HBPOA, nor have I ever attended a meeting. This letter and a similar letter I submitted to the HBPOA for its March 2024 meeting only serve to clarify my answer to the conflict of interest question raised at the March 2024 Board of Commissioner’s Meeting.

Update –
The motion was made to accept the Town Attorney’s findings and determination that there is no conflict-of-interest to serve on the Board of the Holden Beach Property Owners Association (HBPOA) and on the Board of Commissioners for the Town of Holden Beach.

A decision was made – Approved (3-2)
Commissioners Smith and Dyer opposed the motion

13.  Holden Beach Pier Property
. a)
Holden Beach Community Alliance Presentation of Their Petition to Save the .      Pier – Commissioners Smith and Dyer
. b)
Discussion and Possible Action on Pier Property Development – Mayor Pro  .      Tem Myers and Commissioner Paarfus
. c)
Discussion and Possible Action to Request Staff to Issue a Request for                .      Proposals to Repair or Rebuild the Holden Beach Pier that will Meet North            Carolina Building Codes – Commissioners Smith and Dyer
. d)
Discussion and Possible Action to Request Staff to Issue a Request for                     Proposals to Repair or Replace the Building at the Town Property Located at    .      441 Ocean Boulevard West – Commissioners Smith and Dyer

Agenda Packet – pages 67 – 98, plus separate packet

Holden Beach Community Alliance Feedback » click here


Allow a Representative from the Holden Beach Community Alliance to present their Petition to Save the pier.

The Holden Beach Community Alliance is a 501 (c)(3) registered NC nonprofit organization. They conducted a petition drive to Save the Pier and would like to present the petition, go over the results and how they conducted the project. The information came from property owners and the surrounding community.

Holden Beach Community Alliance Presentation » click here

At the beginning of the meeting, Commissioner Thomas proposed that they limit the presentation to ten (10) minutes per the Rules of Procedure. Despite the person making the presentation acknowledging this was enough time it was objected to by two (2) of the Commissioners. They are unnecessarily making everything an issue. The vote was strictly to limit the time allowed for the presentation.

A decision was made – Approved (3-2)
Commissioners Smith and Dyer opposed the motion

Update –
Lisa Ragland did a slide presentation and discussed the result of the Holden Beach Community Alliance (HBCA) survey which was in support of moving forward with the pier project. The petition statement is “If you want the Holden Beach Board of Commissioners to evaluate ALL viable options to SAVE THE PIER and are against the demolition of this historic landmark, please sign this petition”.  By design, they did not ask about spending tax payer dollars to save the pier. She claims they have overwhelming support to have the pier preserved, repaired, restored, or rebuilt. Lisa offered five (5) various options on how we could possibly move forward. Frankly, she was passionate and made a good case on their behalf.

No decision was made – No action taken

Holden Beach Community Alliance / Save the Holden Beach Pier Petition
For more information » click here


Discussion and possible action on Pier Property Development

The purpose is to develop a project approach for the pier property based on the attached information

It is imperative that it be understood that  the pier is an amenity and will have to compete against critical projects infrastructure and other non-critical for funding. Examples of critical infrastructure projects include water system capacity increases, stormwater projects, tire station replacement (for 24/7 manning), road paving, beach and inlet maintenance, etc.

The purpose of this document is to initiate discussion concerning development of the pier property by providing a baseline approach to that development. It is not intended to be the final project plan, but to serve as a starting point.  Development of  the pier property should encompass the entire property, not just the pier and pier building, with priority given to addressing the pier. Phases have been suggested to make the development financially manageable. A notional timeline for preliminary work has been outlined with possible funding scenarios to accomplish it. Last information concerning public private partnerships is provided along with stakeholder information.

Pier Property Development Plan » click here

Update –

Commissioner Parfus discussed a detailed plan for a project approach to develop the pier property. It appears that he really did his homework, was very prepared, knew his stuff, and offered a viable game plan to move the project forward. Motion was made to approve the development plan that he submitted for the pier property.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously

Commissioner Thomas wants the town attorney to look at the PARTF Grant which the Town accepted to determine what our legal obligations are. They decided that since it was not on the agenda it was not appropriate to consider any action. Motion was withdrawn.

No decision was made – No action taken

Mayor Pro Tem Myers wanted to direct the Town staff to determine budgetary requirements, to estimate capital costs, operating costs, maintenance costs, funding strategies, and develop a draft RFP. Motion failed with the vote two (2 ) for and three (3) against.

No decision was made – No action taken
Mayor Pro Tem Myers and Commissioner Thomas voted in favor of the action


Request staff to issue RFP (Request for Proposal) to repair or rebuild the Holden Beach Pier that will meet North Carolina Building Codes

This is a continuing effort to have the pier repaired to have it serve as a recreational activity for property owners, tourists, and the local community. The pier is a staple of Holden Beach, a part of history that has served many generations of family activities, producing memories that these generations want to pass on to future generations. There have been numerous attempts to get reasonable bids by a wider range of contractors, however the staff has not been allowed to submit RFP since original bids. There is no reason for the town to not submit RFP to see what the cost would be with different methods of engineering.

Update –
After discussion they decided to delay this until they are further along in the process.

No decision was made – No action taken


Request staff to issue RFP (Request for Proposal) to repair or replace the building located at the town property located at 441 OBW Holden Beach. The building will need to meet North Carolina Building Codes

The purpose is to have recreational space on the property that allows for retail, food vendors, restrooms/outdoor showers and an entry/ticket booth to the towns pier. A private/public partnership with town would be welcomed. The staff would direct this type of partnership.

Previously reported – March 2024
Commissioners Smith and Dyer are now proposing a public/private partnership. This step is simply a request to get proposals to see if there is any interest in privately doing this project. They say that there is, including one from  previous Commissioner Murdock. Commissioner Paarfus said that an RFP is premature, in his opinion we need to wait until its decided what we want to do there, so we know what we are asking for. Mayor Pro Tem Myers said that they have asked for and have gotten a lot of input and we should look at what the public said before we head down this path. Although a public/private partnership could be a viable option we are not at the point of putting out a formal request for services yet.
No decision was made – No action taken

Local Government Commission Approval of Certain Public Enterprise Agreements

Animated Image of a Old Man with My Two Cents Text

Frankly, this is not a viable location for a year-round business and does not have adequate parking for a seasonal business. The parking lot there has been full throughout the fall and winter regardless of the weather. That is without either the pier being available for use or any business running out of the building. There just is not adequate parking there to support beachgoers, fisherman, and whatever else we plan to do with the building.

Update –
Commissioners Smith and Dyer are again proposing a public/private partnership for the building at the pier property. Motion was made directing the Town staff to contact the Local Government Commission to determine what are the requirements, and what is the approval process for a public/private partnership.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously

14.  Discussion and Possible Action on Placing the Town Manager’s Report on the Board of Commissioners’ Meeting Agenda – Mayor Pro Tem Myers and Commissioner Thomas

Agenda Packet – page 99

Discussion and possible action on placing the Town Manager’s report on the BOC meeting agenda.

The Town Manager typically provides the Commissioners with an update on the status of key projects and programs, such as:

    • The sale of 796 OBW
    • Sewer Station #2 grants and upgrade work
    • Stormwater Study
    • Water System Assessment
    • RFP to demolish the pavilion

This information is typically provided to the Commissioners in written format at the beginning of the BOC meeting and discussed by the Town Manager after the Public Comments towards the end of the meeting.

Moving this report up onto the regular agenda similar to the Police Chief, Building Inspector, and Finance Director reports will allow for more discussion and possible action. It will also increase transparency by including the report information in the meeting packet for the public to review prior to the meeting .

Update –
Mayor Pro Tem Myers would like to have the Town Manager report be added to the agenda. They danced around the timeliness of the report if it is submitted early enough to be in included in the agenda packet. The Board decided to add Town Manager written report to the monthly agenda starting next month.

A decision was made – Approved (4-1)
Commissioner Smith opposed the motion

15.  Town Manager’s Report

Only received one responsive bid for demolition of the pavilion  at $25,000
Consideration of award of contract at next scheduled Regular Meeting

Sewer Lift Station #2 / Greensboro Street
EPA Grant Component $2,669.867
State Funding $1,940,000
Remaining Financing – forecast a possible need for short-term borrowing

 Preliminary paperwork has been submitted to NC Department of Environmental Quality
Waiting to receive offer to fund which will require BOC’s action

Update –
No change in status since last month’s report

Canal Dredging
Previously reported – January 2024
$343,800 Department Wildlife Resources grant awarded for Harbor Acres dredging. $257,850 state and $85,950 local which is from the Harbor Acres Canal Special Revenue Fund. Waiting for NC Department Water Quality  certification for USACE permit approval. Current Request for Proposal (RFP) is out for a 2,700 cyds bucket to barge project in Harbor Acres. Bids are due back by February 6th. Staff is preparing for BOC consideration of grant acceptance and dredger award in Special Meetings that are scheduled in February.

Previously reported – March 2024
Maintenance dredging bid from T.D Eure was the low bidder at $189,000
Dredge boat on site and has been dredging the entrance canals
So far, so good …

Update –
Project has been completed, engineer is certifying

LWF Inlet
Town is working on dredging the inlet using the dredge boat Miss Katie
Grant funding was applied for
Coastal consulting engineer is coordinating with permitting agencies
See Special Meeting 04/12/24 above for additional details

Pier Beach Access / 441 OBW
The walkway, emergency access ramp, and blue matting placement was completed by the Public Works Department. They are still working on refining the handicap parking spaces layout.

Beach Accesses
Sand is piling up on the blue matting will require regular housekeeping maintenance

Quinton Street Beach Access / 114 OBE
Town staff is still working on having bathrooms there
Most responsive bid received at $70,000 and contract has been awarded
This is part of the Key Bridge Mediation Agreement
They are making every effort to complete construction before prime tourist season

High Point Street
Paving project completed, engineer certifying

Ocean Boulevard Resurfacing and Bike Lane Project
Project is pretty much completed including bike lanes and crosswalks

They had a discussion about the crosswalks as follows:

Town Manager Hewett –
Five (5) crosswalks approved at four (4) locations with two (2) at Jordan Boulevard

Several years ago, the locations were determined by working with NCDOT on meeting their nine (9) criteria

Lieutenant Dilworth –
Still in the NC General Statute that pedestrians have the right-of-way regardless of whether it’s a marked crosswalk or any street intersection  

Inspections Director Evans –
Because of the amount of traffic at Jordan Boulevard we may be getting a crossing switch there

796 OBW
The Town owned home there has been advertised with initial offers in the upset bid process due on Friday

In Case You Missed It –

Annual Beach Monitoring
Survey completed , surveying stakes along the length of the beach strand

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

Solid Waste Pick-up Schedule
starting the Saturday before Memorial Day (May 25th) twice a week


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

Paid Parking
Annual parking passes are now available for purchase
Paid parking begins and will be enforced starting April 1st

 THB Newsletter (02/09/24)
Annual Parking Passes Now Available
Annual parking passes are now available for purchase. The Town uses SurfCast by Otto Connect Mobile Solution. This is a mobile app downloadable for Apple and Android devices. You can also visit to purchase a pass. Paid parking is enforced April 1st – October 31st, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Click here for more information on the paid parking program.

Hurricane Vehicle Decals
Property owners will be provided with four (4) decals were included in their April 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.

National Flood Insurance Program: Reauthorization
Congress must periodically renew the NFIP’s statutory authority to operate. On March 22, 2024, the president signed legislation passed by Congress that extends the National Flood Insurance Program’s (NFIP’s) authorization to September 30, 2024. 

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

Upcoming Events –

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 

16.   Mayor’s Comments

From the Mayor’s Desk (04/24/24)


It is exciting to see all of the activities taking place here at Holden Beach!

      • Ocean Boulevard paving and bike paths look great!
      • The Holden Beach causeway has been repaved too!
      • New flowers and plants are beautiful at Town Hall and the garden at the south end of the bridge. Thank you volunteers!
      • Days at the Dock happens this weekend with beautiful weather expected.
      • The first concert of the year will take place at the park next to Town Hall and our Town water tank on May 26th at 6:30 p.m. The band will be the Main Event Band.
      • The Corps of Engineers is planning to re-dredge the Lockwood Folly Inlet on or before Memorial Day. Always be careful there!
      • The new public access adjacent to the Holden Beach fishing pier on the west side is open.
      • The parsonage beside the Holden Beach Chapel has been completely remodeled. There will be an open house this Sunday immediately after the 10:00 a.m. service. Refreshments will be available. Come see it!
      • Sales and construction activity is strong. Rental season is “cranking up”.
      • Trolley Stop on Jordan Boulevard burned a few weeks ago but the site has been cleaned up.
      • The beach strand looks great and shell hunters are happy!
      • The Town commissioners are meeting often trying to complete the 2024/2025 budget. The deadline will be met, and the budget will be adopted before June 30th.
      • Holden Beach was awarded the national title of The Best Restored Beach for 2023. This took place is Washington, D.C. recently.

 Happy spring!!

General Comments –

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

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

Special Meeting Schedule 

Paid Parking

Mayor Pro Tem Myers asked Town Manager Hewett if they enforced paid parking during the festival. David answered NO. That is not what the contract with Otto says so regulations either need to be enforced or the contract changed.

Do not see anywhere that the Board approved suspending paid parking during festivals

In order not to enforce the regulations during the festival the BOC’s needed to execute an amendment to the contract which is what they have done in the past.  Since they did not approve any motion regarding festivals they should have charged for parking island wide, they cannot just decide to not enforce the regulations.

Previously reported – October 2022
Consideration of Early End to Paid Parking this Year – Town Manager Hewett
Agenda Packet – pages 30
Mr. Varner with Otto Connect contacted me regarding the possibility of ending paid parking on October 28, 2022 and allowing free parking island-wide for festival weekend, October 29th and 30th. I suggested this decision would require BOC approval. Mr. Varner needs direction so that he can plan accordingly if the season will end on October 28th.

David stated that this is a contract matter and that he needs Board direction. The thinking is that in order to promote the festival it would be advantageous to suspend paid parking. They agreed to suspend the paid parking season and Otto enforcement island wide as on October 28th
A decision was made – Approved unanimously

Town of Holden Beach Newsletter
Paid Parking Update
In an effort to better facilitate the Festival by the Sea, the Board of Commissioners voted during their last meeting to end paid parking effective October 28, 2022. We would like to remind everyone that while parking will remain free until April 2023, all other parking regulations are in effect and will be enforced. For complete details refer to our website at

Animated Image of a Old Man with My Two Cents Text

It’s a zoo out there during the festival weekend. With all the parking problems that happen during the festivals you would think we would want to continue enforcing parking in designated areas only. By suspending enforcement that was done by Otto people can and will park anywhere they want. It seems to me that they put up the white flag and surrendered. Instead of attempting to get some semblance of compliance they are going with – it is what it is.

Previously reported – December 2022
I would like to discuss possibly having the BOC direct the Town Manager to review this information and suggestions from citizens on the first year of paid parking and return staff suggestions to the BOC for the January BOC meeting.

Commissioner Smith requested that the Town Manager Hewett and his staff review these suggestions and consider making changes to the paid parking program. They would like staff suggestions to be presented to the Board at their January meeting.
A decision was made – Approved unanimously

Previously reported – January 2023
Discussion and Possible Action on Response to Parking Program Tasker – Town Manager Hewett
Agenda Packet – pages 29 – 32
Inspections Director Evans, Chief Dixon, Assistant Town Manager Ferguson, Budget & Fiscal Analyst McRainey, Town Clerk Finnell and I met with Jim Varner and Jack DeSantos from Otto Connect to discuss the Board of Commissioners tasker from the December meeting. Below are the group’s recommendations.

Discuss possibly having free parking for the two festivals and in the area of any permitted event.

 It is recommended that paid parking be suspended townwide during festival weekends. Other Town sponsored events are already addressed in Code of Ordinances Section 72.02(0).

David assembled a staff group which met with Otto Connect to discuss the recommendations that were submitted. Commissioner Smith went through each item on the list and discussed the recommendations that were made. He asked what the Board wanted to do moving forward. The Board by consensus made a decision on each item. The primary takeaway was to leave most things as they are for the time being. The only significant change that was made is that they increased the paid parking rates, they agreed to set the fees for the 2023 season at $4 per hour, $20 per day, $80 per week and $150 for an annual pass. Despite the increase the fees are still less than Otto Connect recommended and also less than what Oak Island just implemented.
A decision was made – Approved unanimously

Previously reported – February 2023
Agenda Packet
The Board reviewed the staff response provided to the Board’s parking tasker. Jim Varner and Jack Desantos joined staff in developing the response. The Board discussed the items line by line. Lieutenant Dilworth said the Police Department supports the document provided. After discussion, the Board agreed to the following changes to the paid parking program: update the contract with Otto Connect regarding the way boat trailers without tags are handled; increase fees to $4 per hour, $20 per day, $80 per week and $150 one vehicle/$300 two vehicles annual pass; and delegate Otto Connect to work with staff to install signage. The Board would also like Otto Connect to work with staff to do a street-by-street assessment of signage.

Do not see that they actually approved the tasker
that references free parking during festivals

Previously reported – March 2024
The third motion made at the March meeting was to charge for parking during festivals. Currently we just do not enforce paid parking regulations anywhere on the island when there are festivals. That is not what the contract with Otto says so it either needs to be enforced or the contract changed. The motion made is to not enforce regulations in the festival area only.
No decision was made – No action taken

 It’s not like they don’t have anything to work on …

The following twenty-one (21) items are what’s In the Works/Loose Ends queue:

        • 796 OBW Project
        • Accommodation/Occupancy Tax Compliance
        • ADA Mediation Agreement
        • Attorney
        • Beach Mat Plan
        • Block Q Project
        • Carolina Avenue
        • Dog Park
        • Fire Station Project
        • Harbor Acres
        • ICW/No Wake Zone Enforcement
        • Inlet Hazard Areas
        • Parking – 800 Block
        • Pavilion Replacement
        • Pier Properties Project
        • Rights-of-Way
        • Sewer System/Lift station #2
        • Stormwater Management Project
        • USACE/Coastal Storm Risk Management Study
        • Water System Assessment/Water Tower
        • Waste Ordinance Enforcement Policy
        • Wetland Delineation/Bulkheading

The definition of loose ends is a fragment of unfinished business or a detail that is not yet settled or explained, which is the current status of these items. All of these items were started and then put on hold, and they were never put back in the queue. This Board needs to continue working on them and move these items to closure.

Hurricane Season
For more information » click here.

Be prepared – have a plan!

‘Alarming’ Ocean Temperatures Suggest This Hurricane Season Will Be a Daunting One
An early forecast from one set of experts sees an above-average hurricane season that may rival the busiest years on record.
A key area of the Atlantic Ocean where hurricanes form is already abnormally warm, much warmer than an ideal swimming pool temperature of about 80 degrees and on the cusp of feeling more like warm bathtub water. These conditions were described by Benjamin Kirtman, a professor of atmospheric sciences at the University of Miami, as “unprecedented,” “alarming” and an “out-of-bounds anomaly.” Combined with the rapidly subsiding El Niño weather pattern, it is leading to mounting confidence among forecasting experts that there will be an exceptionally high number of storms this hurricane season. One such expert, Phil Klotzbach, a researcher at Colorado State University, said in his team’s annual forecast on Thursday that they expected a remarkably busy season of 23 named storms, including 11 hurricanes — five of them potentially reaching major status, meaning Category 3 or higher. In a typical season, there are 14 named storms with seven hurricanes and three of them major. Dr. Klotzbach said there was a “well above-average probability” that at least one major hurricane would make landfall along the United States and in the Caribbean. It’s the Colorado State researchers’ biggest April prediction ever, by a healthy margin, said Dr. Klotzbach. While things could still play out differently, he said he was more confident than he normally would be this early in the year. All the conditions that he and other researchers look at to forecast the season, such as weather patterns, sea surface temperatures and computer model data, are pointing in one direction. “Normally, I wouldn’t go nearly this high,” he said, but with the data he’s seeing, “Why hedge?” If anything, he said, his numbers are on the conservative side, and there are computer models that indicate even more storms on the way.

The United States was lucky in 2023.
Last year was unusual. Though only one hurricane, Idalia, made landfall in the United States, 20 storms formed, a number far above average and the fourth most since record keeping began. Typically, the El Niño pattern that was in force would have suppressed hurricanes and reduced the number of storms in a season. But in 2023, the warm ocean temperatures in the Atlantic blunted El Niño’s effect to thwart storms. That left Idalia as the one impactful storm of the season in the Atlantic, with 12 deaths attributed to it and over $1 billion in damage. It hit in the big bend of Florida, where few people live, and the prevailing thought among hurricane researchers is that the East Coast got lucky, Dr. Klotzbach said. That luck may change this year. The El Niño pattern is dwindling now, and the likelihood of a La Niña pattern emerging during the hurricane season could also cause a shift in the steering pattern over the Atlantic. During an El Niño weather pattern, the area of high pressure over the Atlantic tends to weaken, which allows for storms to curve north and then east away from land. That’s what kept most of the storms last year away from land. A La Niña weather pattern would already have forecasters looking toward an above-average year. The possibility of a La Niña, combined with record sea surface temperatures this hurricane season, could create a robust environment for storms to form and intensify this year. Just because there are strong signals during an El Niño year that one thing will occur, it doesn’t mean the opposite happens during a La Niña year, Dr. Kirtman said. But if the high pressure strengthens and shifts west, it will mean more hurricanes making landfall. The region where storms are most likely to form is often called the “tropical Atlantic,” stretching from West Africa to Central America and between Cuba and South America. During a La Niña year, Dr. Klotzbach said, there’s a slight increase in hurricanes forming in the western side of this main development zone — closer to the Caribbean than to Africa. When a storm forms there, it is more likely to make landfall because it’s closer to land. And while it is difficult to predict specific landfalls this far ahead of the season, the sheer odds of more storms increases the expected risk to coastal areas. Sea surface temperatures also affect the hurricane season. Over the past century, those temperatures have increased gradually. But last year, with an intensity that unnerved climate scientists, the warming ratcheted up more rapidly. And in the main area where hurricanes form, 2024 is already the warmest in a decade. “Crazy” is how Dr. Kirtman described it. The main development region is, right now, warmer than it’s historically been,” he said. “So, it’s an out-of-bounds anomaly.” There is little doubt in his mind that we are seeing some profound climate change impacts, but scientists don’t know exactly why it is occurring so quickly all of a sudden. But it is happening, and it is likely to affect the season. “The chances of a big, big hurricane that has a large impact making landfall is definitely increased,” he said.

Early forecasts aren’t always right.
It’s reasonable to take this forecast with a grain of sea salt; the seasonal forecast in April hasn’t always been the most accurate. Colorado State University’s April forecast for the 2023 hurricane season called for a slightly below-average season with 13 named storms. Instead, there were 20. Even Dr. Klotzbach admits the April forecast isn’t always the best prediction, but its accuracy is improving. The weather can be fickle, and much can change before the season officially begins on June 1. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration will issue its own forecast in late May. But for now, Colorado State and a few other forecasting groups have all called for one of the busiest seasons on record. By year’s end, Dr. Klotzbach said, he’ll be writing a scientific paper on one of two things: the incredibly active hurricane season of 2024, or one of the biggest head fakes in Atlantic hurricane season history. But he’s pretty confident it will be the former. “If it turns out to be two hurricanes,” he said, “then I should just quit and do something else.”
Read more » click here

The 2024 hurricane season could be busy.
Here’s what to expect in North Carolina.
“This is the highest prediction for hurricanes that (Colorado State University) has ever issued with their April outlook.”
The start of the 2024 hurricane season is sneaking up just as the weather warms, and forecasters are already out with their early-season predictions. But with climate change warming the oceans and air temperatures seemingly hitting new highs every month, with the European Union’s climate service declaring March to be the 10th consecutive month of record worldwide temperatures, is it only a question of how bad things will be this year? Or will Southeastern North Carolina be able to (mostly) dodge the proverbial storm bullet for another year?

What are forecasters saying?
According to forecasters at Colorado State University (CSU), who have been releasing April predictions since 1995, the 2024 season will be “an extremely active Atlantic hurricane season.” The researchers are predicting 23 named storms, with 11 becoming hurricanes and five of those becoming Category 3 or stronger systems. That’s about 170% of the usual storm activity of an average year. “This is the highest prediction for hurricanes that CSU has ever issued with their April outlook,” stated the researchers in a release.

 The probability of one of those storms making landfall on the mainland U.S.:

    • 62% for the entire U.S. coastline (average from 1880–2020 is 43%).
    • 34% for the U.S. East Coast, including the Florida peninsula (average from 1880–2020 is21%).
    • 56% probability a hurricane will come within 50 miles of the N.C. coast, 85% for a named tropical storm.

The researchers added that the predicted storm activity is exhibiting characteristics similar to the 2010 and 2020 seasons.

How bad were 2010 and 2020?
For the Wilmington area, the 2010 hurricane season didn’t bring too many impacts although Tropical Storm Nicole did drop more than 22 inches of rain on the Port City, flooding more than 100 roads in Brunswick County and leaving chunks of Pleasure Island underwater. But for the Atlantic basin as a whole, it was very busy, with some of the more brutal storms, particularly Alex and Karl, hammering the Caribbean and Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. A pair of Category 4 monsters, Danielle and Earl, also luckily stayed out mostly at sea. A decade later, 2020 proved to be the most active hurricane season ever with 30 named storms, 14 of which developed into hurricanes. That list included a record 12 U.S. landfalling storms, including Hurricane Isaias, which raked the Brunswick County beaches and knocked out power to nearly 400,000 customers in the Carolinas.

What about El Niño & La Niña in 2024?
While El Niño conditions have dominated for the past year or so, that should transition into La Niña by the time hurricane season rolls around. Dr. Michael Mann, a meteorologist and scientist at the University of Pennsylvania, said that will mean decreased wind shear in the tropical Atlantic and a more favorable environment for tropical cyclones.

Did we learn anything from the 2023 season?
Unfortunately, Mann said one of the lessons that last season reinforced was that in a world buffeted by climate change forecasters continue to have a tendency to under predict the actual number of named storms. He added that while ocean surface temperatures are somewhat retreating from the record heat we’ve seen recently, his team is still expecting to see abnormally warm water temperatures in the main development region of the Atlantic for storms. In other words, it could be a long, stormy season so buckle up and be prepared. “It takes only one storm near you to make this an active season for you,” said CSU meteorologist Dr. Michael Bell. Hurricane season starts June 1 and runs through November.
Read more » click here 

Do you enjoy this newsletter?
Then please forward it to a friend!

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