09 – Town Meeting

Lou’s Views

“Unofficial” Minutes & Comments


BOC’s Public Hearing / Regular Meeting 09/20/22

Board of Commissioners’ Agenda Packet click here

Audio Recording » click here


PUBLIC HEARING: Board of Commissioners’ Intent to Permanently Close a Portion of Carolina Avenue from its Intersection with Jordan Boulevard to its Intersection with Quinton Street

Previously reported – July 2022
Discussion and Possible Approval of Resolution 22-07, Resolution of Intent to Permanently Close a Portion of Carolina Avenue – Town Clerk Finnell

Agenda Packet – pages 43 – 48
At the May 17th meeting, the Board instructed staff to move forward with the process to close a portion of Carolina Avenue between Quinton Street and Jordan Boulevard. A survey for the area has been completed. The metes and bounds description has been added to the draft resolution of intent presented at the May meeting (Attachment 1).

Staff is proposing that the required public hearing be held at the September 20, 2022 meeting. This will allow staff time to advertise the public hearing for four successive weeks, post the property and mail any required notices required per North Carolina Statute §160A-299. Attached is the summary of the process that was presented at the May meeting (Attachment 2).

If the Board would like to move fo1ward with the closure of Carolina Avenue between Quinton Street and Jordan Boulevard, the suggested motion is to approve Resolution 22-07, Resolution of Intent to Permanently Close a Portion of Carolina Avenue and schedule the public hearing for September 20, 2022 at 5:00 p.m.

RESOLUTION 22-07

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Holden Beach Board of Commissioners, as follows:

Section 1. It is the intent of the Holden Beach Board of Commissioners to permanently close a portion of Carolina Avenue from its intersection with Jordan Boulevard to its intersection with Quinton Street (See Attached Exhibit A for Legal Description). Said street is located within the corporate limits of the Town of Holden Beach, North Carolina.

Section 2. A public hearing on the matter of the above-described proposed permanent closure of the described portion of Carolina Avenue is hereby called and is to be held at the regular meeting of the Holden Beach Board of Commissioners on September 20, 2022 at 5:00 p.m. in the Holden Beach Town Hall Public Assembly, 110 Rothschild Street, Holden Beach, NC 28462. At said public hearing, any person may be heard on the question of whether or not the intended closing of the specified portion of Carolina Avenue would be detrimental to the public interest or the property rights of any individual.

§ 160A-299. Procedure for permanently closing streets and alleys.
(a) When a city proposes to permanently close any street or public alley, the council shall first adopt a resolution declaring its intent to close the street or alley and calling a public hearing on the question. The resolution shall be published once a week for four successive weeks prior to the hearing, a copy thereof shall be sent by registered or certified mail to all owners of property adjoining the street or alley as shown on the county tax records, and a notice of the closing and public hearing shall be prominently posted in at least two places along the street or alley. At the hearing, any person may be heard on the question of whether or not the closing would be detrimental to the public interest, or the property rights of any individual. If it appears to the satisfaction of the council after the hearing that closing the street or alley is not contrary to the public interest, and that no individual owning property in the vicinity of the street or alley or in the subdivision in which it is located would thereby be deprived of reasonable means of ingress and egress to his property, the council may adopt an order closing the street or alley. A certified copy of the order (or judgment of the court) shall be filed in the office of the register of deeds of the county in which the street, or any portion thereof, is located. Upon the closing of a street or alley in accordance with this section, subject to the provisions of subsection (f) of this section, all right, title, and interest in the right-of-way shall be conclusively presumed to be vested in those persons owning lots or parcels of land adjacent to the street or alley, and the title of such adjoining landowners, for the width of the abutting land owned by them, shall extend to the centerline of the street or alley.

The intent is to close Carolina Avenue from its intersection with Jordan Boulevard to its intersection with Quinton Street. David provided a draft of a proposed Resolution that will have to be adopted by the Board in order to proceed. A Public Hearing will also be required to move forward. He outlined the steps necessary to make this happen. Motion was made to move forward with the process as outlined.

NCGS 160A-299 state the Protocols for Permanently Closing Streets. The Resolution adopted by the Board is necessary in order to proceed. A Public Hearing is required to move forward and was scheduled.

Update –
Public Hearing was held  on their intent to close a portion of Carolina Avenue from its intersection with Jordan Boulevard to its intersection with Quinton Street.


1.   Status Update and Additional Work Needed for Corps’ Coastal Storm Risk Management Study – Colonel Bennett (Assistant Town Manager Ferguson)

Agenda Packet – pages 8 – 11
The Army Corps of Engineers will be presenting recently communicated proposed changes in the Coastal Storm Risk Management Study duration, scope, costs, and potential funding options (slides included in agenda packet) . The board should consider this as an opportunity to obtain clarity on its options going forward. The board may need to consider a letter of intent regarding changes to study para meters.

Efforts and Expenditures to date

Hydrographic Survey Contract

$183,610

ERDC Inlet Model Evaluation$ 81,434
USACE Labor$699,989
Total Expenditure$965,033

Additional scope required for the study
EIS, borrow source investigations, backside waterway flooding analysis
Resulting in an additional 11 months of study and a cost increase of – $1.25 M.

Previously reported – January 2020
Last week they held a “what’s next”  call with Ward & Smith regarding Federal Coastal Storm Damage Study. Holden Beach is competing for a new study as part of USACE 2021Work Plan authorized by the Energy and Water Development Appropriations bill. Wilmington District USACE has affirmed Holden Beach is at the top of their priority list. Town staff is working with Ward & Smith to maintain formal contact with Office of Management and Budget and Corps to ensure that the continuity of the Town’s position is maintained through changes in the federal administration. Ward & Smith has reiterated that if included in the work plan, the Town would need to sign an agreement with the Corps committing the Town to participate in a study effort at a cost of $1.5mm spread over course of three years; $500k of which would need to be included in fiscal year 21/22. David received a call today informing him that Holden Beach has been selected, which means we have been made a priority.

Breaking News
It appears that we have also been funded.

ARMY CIVIL WORKS PROGRAM / FY 2021 WORK PLAN – INVESTIGATIONS

Study: BRUNSWICK COUNTY BEACHES (HOLDEN BEACH), NC
Allocation: $500,000
Summary of Work: Initiate a General Reevaluation Report for Holden Beach

Previously reported – July 2020
Congressman Mike McIntyre of Poyner Spruill made presentation to the Board with an update on Poyner Spruill and The Ferguson Group’s most recent advocacy efforts.

Board was presented with four options for moving forward and recommended pursuing the following two options:

1) Coastal Storm Damage Reduction Study Authorization Section 7001 program – three / three / three. Three years / three million dollars / reviewed at all three levels – District / Division/ Washington. Deadline to file a Letter of Intent application, is the end of next month, this just gets us in line to be included for consideration. If we are selected and we have made the cut, we would then have to sign a contract probably sometime around 2024 making a commitment to pay our share. That would be half the cost, so our portion would be $1.5 million. At best this is a long shot and years down the road. That said, we would still be committing to pay $1.5 million for the study with no assurances  that we will actually have the project constructed.

2) Congressional authority to do study was approved in 1966 but was never completed. We could pursue this option simultaneously with the 7001 process. However, as it stands now, we would be obligated to pay the costs that were incurred during the original study request. This is like a Hail Mary pass. We would attempt to run the 1966 Brunswick County Beaches Project up the flag pole.  USACE spent $8.5 million, and the beaches are obligated to pay half of that.  We could ask for forgiveness, where we would not agree to pay for our share which is $1.1 million and do a new study. Uncertain whether USACE would go for this.   

The whole purpose of the study is to identify a plan of improvement that is in the public’s best interest which comprises of three prongs that includes being technically feasible, environmentally acceptable, and cost justified.

Board agreed to give authority to proceed with both options, with no financial obligation at this point.

A decision was made – Approved (3-2)
Commissioners Kwiatkowski and Sullivan voted against the motion

Editor’s Note
Water Resources Development Act of 2020 (S. 1811)
Backlog of Authorized Projects
S.
1811 (§301) addresses the authorization of various types of projects in the backlog.
.     * 
deauthorize projects authorized prior to November 17, 1986, that had not been started or were unfunded for 10 years;

HB commissioners vote for beach nourishment application submission
“Let’s not leave any stone … any pebble of sand unturned,” said Mike McIntyre, Poyner Spruill partner and former congressman, during discussion of Holden Beach’s beach restoration options. Holden Beach Board of Commissioners met with McIntyreon Tuesday, July 21, for a special meeting regarding the possibility of partaking in a Coastal Storm Damage Reduction Study with U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). Three individuals from The Ferguson Group (TFG) joined via conference call to provide guidance in the commissioners’ decision. On call was Rodger Gwinn, CEO; Earl Stockdale, council and senior advisor; and Stephanie Missert, principal and manager of policy and regulatory affairs. McIntyre described The Ferguson Group as “a strategic monitoring and legislative research group that is right there in Washington. They are our eyes and ears on the hill so that we can monitor legislation daily.” TGA is working as the advocate for Holden Beach, committed to do whatever it takes to help them. Stockdale explained that TGA is trying to devise a path forward that will get Holden Beach a plan of improvement on the shortest timeline with a clear understanding of what that means to them on terms of cost and with part of the strategy involving when they would be expected to pay for either options. “The idea here is basically to preserve a path forward,” Stockdale said. McIntyre opened the meeting by providing background context of what is going on in Congress in the first half of 2020. He said the House energy and water appropriation bill has funding for USACE of $49.6 billion, an increase of 3 percent from last year. In addition, money has been appropriated for seven new study starts, which McIntyre said is a major feat compared to their normal one study start appropriation. An additional $43.5 billion has been appointed for emergency spending money for COVID-related items. McIntyre said this budget might help free up money for projects such as beach nourishment. “These are at least the silver lining around the dark clouds of the coronavirus, in looking at the funding that’s been added to the core to deal with some of its projects,” McIntyre said. McIntyre reported having extensive discussions about status of authorization from Flood Control Act of 1996 for Brunswick County beaches with both senator offices and committee staff over this past month. The Wilmington District USACE has heeded the Lockwood Folly and beach nourishment status at Holden Beach. They recommended the town apply for Section 7001 of Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) of 2014. According to the Congressional Research Service, for USACE studies and projects, congressional study and project authorization generally is required prior to being eligible for federal appropriations. Congress generally considers an omnibus USACE authorization bill, known as WRDA, biennially. WRDA is an annual process for identifying proposals for site-specific studies and projects under USACE’s water resource mission and authorities for congressional consideration of the proposal’s authorization. The submission period for the 2021 WRDA opened May 1 and closes Aug. 31. McIntyre presented the board with four options. Option A, they do nothing. Option B, apply for the Section 7001 to request authorization and start the process over. Option C, request a new study using the existing 1966 Brunswick County Beaches authority. The final option is to submit a letter of intent (LOI) for the new study using the existing 1966 Brunswick County Beaches Authority and commit to paying back the town’s share of construction costs. “It may be worthwhile to go ahead and put your name in the pot because if it’s not in the pot it’s not going to be considered and it’s not costing you anything right now,” McIntyre said. While Section 7001 requires a payment of $1.5 million, the town does not have to pay anything upfront. McIntyre estimated the payment would not be made until 2023. “I guess the sweetener for that deal is that, sure if the prior authorization works and it saved you a few years of waiting on getting a construction project done, then that may have been worth paying that $1 million back,” McIntyre said. Commissioner Mike Sullivan asked if the board decided to go forward with the Section 7001 program whether that would preclude them from being eligible for FEMA reimbursements in the future. Similarly, Commissioner Woody Tyner questioned the difference between FEMA and USACE funding. TGA employees said the advantage of USACE funding is they can apply pressure and be watchdogs in D.C. USACE also allows projects to be paid for, get technical expertise and bring the beach back up to USACE level. Commissioner Gerald Brown motioned to start the Section 7001 application process, authorizing town manager David Hewett to do preliminary work in conjunction with TGA. “We’re not obligated to spend one dime, but at least we’re rolling the ball in the right direction,” Brown said. The vote was passed with three in favor and Commissioners Pat Kwiatkowski and Sullivan opposed. To learn more about Section 7001 Annual Report Process, go to fas.org/sgp/crs/natsec/R45185.pdf. The meeting was livestreamed on the Town’s Facebook page at facebook.com/holdenbeachtownhall to provide social-distancing measures.
Read more » click here

Previously reported – August 2020
Submitted Letter of Intent using existing authorization which could make us eligible to be included in workplan as early as next Spring. Therefore, we will wait to submit 7001 application until we know how that plays out.

Previously reported – April 2021
Presentation and Possible Action on Holden Beach Coastal Storm Risk Management Study Federal Cost Share Agreement (FCSA) – Bob Keistler, Corps (Assistant Town Manager Ferguson)
.  a.
Ordinance 21-09, An Ordinance Amending Ordinance 20-10, The Revenues and Appropriations Ordinance for Fiscal Year 2020 – 2021 (Amendment No. 11)

Agenda Packet – slide presentation pages 14 to 40

In order for us to become a USACE beach requires a new study be authorized
Three (3) years / Three (3) levels of review / Three (3) million dollars
     *
$1.5 million Feds and $1.5 million Town of Holden Beach

Why consider doing a study?

    • FEMA is not an insurance policy
    • The rule book is changing
    • We have to consider risks

Coastal Storm Risk Management Study
This attached draft agreement for a Coastal Storm Risk Management Study (Attachment 1) between the USACE and the Town of Holden Beach represents the inclusion of the study in the Corps work plan for this federal fiscal year. The study was the Town’s number one advocacy priority at the federal level as a proposed means of storm damage reduction . The Town will not know if it is economically and environmentally feasible for us to become a federal beach unless the study is conducted. The attached budget amendment (Attachment  2) in the amount of $500,000 represents the town’s commitment for the upcoming FY for the Town’s share of the total non-federal (Town) study cost of $1,500,000.

If the BOC chooses to pursue the study, a motion will need to be made to authorize the Town Manager to execute the contract document and self-certification of financial capability with the USACE and approve the attached budget amendment.

ORDINANCE NO. 21-09
Moved funds of $500,000
From Revenue account #50.0398.0300 to Expense account#50.0710.5008

Christy went through a slide presentation briefly reviewing how we got to this point. The abridged version is that FEMA continues to change the rules for engineered beaches maintenance programs. The study with the USACE gives us another option if we can’t count on FEMA moving forward. Commissioner Kwiatkowski was prepared as usual and had a number of questions for the USACE representatives that were in attendance at the meeting. The Corps representative walked them through the process. Commissioner Sullivan asked a couple additional questions regarding funding. An important takeaway is the federal government contributes 65% of the costs for initial construction, the cost split is 50% between federal and non-federal funding for maintenance nourishment projects. Of course, the major concern is whether there will be adequate funding for not only the study but for an approved project. The Corps rep made it very clear that there is no guarantee, but he felt confident that they both would be funded. He understands that the Town is looking to obtain the best deal possible. FEMA and USACE organizations are both here to help and each have a place. The difference between them is that the USACE is more of a designed project, build, and maintain whereas FEMA is primarily there to help cover emergencies. The BOC’s decided to fund the  $1.5 million study and take the funds from the BPART account instead of the Capital Reserve account.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously

We just approved spending $1.5 million to potentially switch to USACEwait for itafter we just received $45 million for FEMA projects. I have some reservations about making the change and was really disappointed that there was not more serious discussions prior to spending that kind of money.  Just to be clear I’m for beach nourishment, but I am generally opposed to moving forward with the federal project due to the uncertainty of the funding. Congressional authorization of a project does not necessarily mean that the project will receive federal construction funds. Project authorizations over the years have far outpaced the level of federal appropriations provided. Our portion is $1.5 million just for the Storm Risk Management study, which is a huge amount of money when we don’t even know if the study will be completely funded let alone whether the project will be approved or funded.

Update –
USACE briefly reviewed the process and gave us a status update. Hat in hand, they said they are not able to get it done as presented to us; neither in the time frame three (3) years nor for the budget of three (3) million dollars. Additional work beyond what they planned is needed. They realize that they need to take other variables into consideration, and they need to address it now. Colonel Bennett stated that they were not here to advocate for or against the project but were here to communicate capability. The sooner that they get Board approval the better, it would likely be a greater opportunity to be selected. The Board allowed the public to ask any questions that they had. Town Manager will draft letter of intent and the BOC’s will discuss at the Special Meeting scheduled for September 28th.

No decision was made – No action taken

Let me get this straight we already committed $1.5 million for our portion just over one (1) year ago and now they want us to ante up another 1.25 million? The additional cost prohibits us from doing other things that we planned on doing.


2.   Police Report – Chief Jeremy Dixon

Police Patch
Jeremy reviewed the actions that were taken by them last month

 Experienced a normal decline of activity after the Labor Day weekend

 Agenda Packet – pages 12 – 18

Otto connect the paid parking vendor, is handling parking issues and issued 344 citations last month.

Child Passenger Safety Week – briefly reviewed seat belt requirements to increase awareness

Next major events are:
Run Holden Beach on October 1st
Mountain to Coast Ride on October 8th
Festival by the Sea is scheduled for October 29th – 30th
Expect significant traffic delays

The police department currently has only eight (8) officers of the ten (10) they are budgeted to have. Otto handling the majority of parking issues.

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 has produced a safety video to improve awareness.

Public Service Announcement – Chief Dixon
Click here
to see Chief Dixon’s public service announcement regarding low-speed vehicles.

Reminded everyone its Hurricane Season be prepared, have a plan!
We are in the more active hurricane period which is from August to October


3.   Inspections Department Report – Inspections Director Evans

Agenda Packet – pages 19 – 21

 Previously reported – June 2022
Timbo prepared a slide presentation. They are dedicated to keeping families and visitors safe, by enforcing the applied rules and regulations applicable to development and construction within the town corporate limits. Building on the island has picked up exponentially and he made it clear that they have been very, very, busy.

The department has the inability to cut corners, they can’t reduce process and carry out their core responsibilities.

Apparently Timbo took umbrage to the criticism of the department at the last meeting and prepared this report in response. We get it, there is a lot going on.

Previously reported – July 2022
Bottomline, a lot of building is going on. They have a new inspector in training, so we now have two people out there. The department is down an  administrative person which will affect turnaround time. They are trying to do the best they can. Don’t really see the need for a monthly update, I’d think his time is better spent elsewhere.

Previously reported – August 2022
Timbo reported what the department is busy doing. Finally, activity has started to be trending down. The department is now fully staffed, they have two (2) trainees.

Update –
Timbo briefly reviewed what’s going on. He feels that the personnel have been able to improve the service they are providing to the community.


4.   Discussion and Possible Action on Statements of Qualifications Received for Block Q and the Pier Properties – Town Manager Hewett

Agenda Packet – page 22, plus separate packet

Block Q/Pier Proposals

As directed, staff readvertised the Requests for Qualifications (RFQ) for the Block Q and HB Pier properties.

In response to the RFQs, we received Statements of Qualifications from the following firms for the Block Q properties: McGill Associates, Bowman Murray Hemingway Architects and Pinnacle Architecture. The same firms, along with Stature Engineering provided a statement in response to the RFQ for the HB Pier property.

The Statements of Qualifications are included for the Board’s review and discussion on how to proceed.

Previously reported July 2022
The Board was not comfortable with having only one response. They gave direction to the Town Manager to reach out and attempt to get more responses. 

Previously reported – August 2022
As directed, staff readvertised the Requests for Qualifications (RFQ) for the Block Q and HB Pier properties. In addition to placing an ad in the Star News, advertising on our website and sending the RFQ to the original directly solicited recipients, the RFQs were sent to additional firms as requested by the Board. These firms include Withers & Ravenel, WK Dickson and Co., McPherson Engineering Design, Moffatt and Nichol, Gary Gurganus, Applied Technology and Management and Stature Engineering.

In response to the RFQs, we received Statements of Qualifications from two firms. McGill Associates provided statements for both the HB Pier and Block Q properties. Stature Engineering provided a statement in response to the RFQ for the HB Pier property.

The Statements of Qualifications are included for the Board’s review and discussion on how to proceed.

A number of firms were contacted. But after re-advertising, only one (1) firm submitted for Block Q and two (2) for the Pier. The Board was still not comfortable with this few responses. The BOC’s would like to have at least three (3) responses for each property. They gave direction to the Town Manager to reach out and attempt to get more responses.
No decision was made – No action taken

Update –
They finally have at least three (3) responses for each property. BOC’s need to select an engineering firm for the Block Q and Pier properties plan for development. They need to follow the process for grant funding, which means that they are  required to select an engineering firm based on their qualifications. David put together a score sheet to help them make the selection. The BOC’s will discuss and select engineering firm at the Special Meeting scheduled for September 28th.

No decision was made – No action taken


5.   Discussion and Possible Action on Ordinance 22-20, An Order Closing Carolina Avenue from its Intersection with Jordan Boulevard to its Intersection with Quinton Street – Town Clerk Finnell

Agenda Packet – pages 23 – 26

A public hearing on the proposed closure of a portion of Carolina Avenue will be held at the September
20th meeting.

If it is found to the satisfaction of the Board that closure is not contrary to public interest and no individual owning property in the vicinity of the street would be deprived of reasonable ingress or egress to the property, the Board could adopt Ordinance 22-20 (Attachment 1). The ordinance orders that the portion of Carolina Avenue from its intersection with Jordan Boulevard to its intersection with Quinton Street be closed effective immediately and directs that the order be filed in the office of the Register of Deeds.

Update –
Commissioner Murdock questioned whether it was necessary for a portion of the street to be closed immediately since we currently do not have a plan in place to utilize the property. Decision was to hold in abeyance until they have a plan in place.

No decision was made – No action taken


6.  Discussion and Possible Scheduling of a Date to Hold a Special Meeting to Interview Potential Candidates to Fill the Vacancy on the Board of Commissioners and to Select a New Member to Fill the Vacancy – Town Clerk Finnell

Agenda Packet – page 27, plus separate packet

Commissioner Vacancy

The following people have submitted their information to be considered to fill the vacancy on the Board of Commissioners: Gerald Arnold, Jim Bauer, Mike Felmly, Richard Griffin, Luke Lodge, Rick McInturf, Sylvia Pate and Keith Smith.

As directed at the last meeting, the Board will need to set a date for a special meeting to hold  interviews. Based on everybody’s availability that I received,  I  would  recommend  it  be  set  for  Wednesday,  September 28th at 5:30 p.m.

Previously reported – August 2022

Filling a Vacancy on the Town Council

§ 30.11 TERMS OF OFFICE; FILLING OF VACANCIES.
     (A)     Commissioner shall be two years, both of which begin on the day of first regular meeting in December following their election, except in case either is elected to serve an unexpired term, in which case the newly elected officers shall qualify and commence serving immediately upon the declaration of the result of the election by the Town BOC.

     (B)     Vacancies shall be filled as provided for in North Carolina General Statute § 160A-63

§ 160A63. Vacancies.
A vacancy that occurs in an elective office of a city shall be filled by appointment of the city council. If the term of the office expires immediately following the next regular city election, or if the next regular city election will be held within 90 days after the vacancy occurs, the person appointed to fill the vacancy shall serve the remainder of the unexpired term. Otherwise, a successor shall be elected at the next regularly scheduled city election that is held more than 90 days after the vacancy occurs, and the person appointed to fill the vacancy shall serve only until the elected successor takes office. The elected successor shall then serve the remainder of the unexpired term.

Holden Beach Commissioner Gerald Brown passes away
Holden Beach Town Commissioner Gerald Brown has passed away after battling health issues for the past several weeks, according to Mayor J. Alan Holden. Holden said Brown passed away in the hospital on Sunday. Brown was elected as Town Commissioner in November 2019. He served as Mayor Pro Tem after taking office. Holden said he hoped to have additional details on services for Brown in the next couple of days. According to the mayor, the Board of Commissioners will appoint a replacement to serve the remainder of Brown’s current term, which ends in December 2023. Holden said he did not know when that selection would take place.

Although the statute  states that the position is to be filled by appointment by the Board, they decided that instead they would consider anybody in the Town that wants to be a Commissioner. The Board agreed to request that anybody interested should submit their qualifications in the next thirty (30) days. Applications will be accepted, and candidates will be interviewed by the Board at a Special Meeting. They will be selected, but not seated until the October meeting.

A decision was made – Approved (3-1)
Commissioner Smith opposed the motion

Board of Commissioners’ Vacancy
There is currently a vacancy on the Holden Beach Board of Commissioners.

If you are a resident and interested in filling the vacancy, please send your name, qualifications/background and a description of why you would like to serve to Heather Finnell at heather@hbtownhall.com or to 110 Rothschild Street, Holden Beach, NC 28462 by September 20th.

The Board of Commissioners will review the submissions and schedule a special meeting to interview the interested candidates. If there are any dates that you are unavailable (through mid-October) please indicate that on your submission. 

Update –
The BOC’s will hold interviews to select person to fill vacancy at the Special Meeting scheduled for September 28th.


7.   Discussion and Possible Action on Potential Funding Options Presented by Brunswick County for Biosolids Disposal – Public Works Director Clemmons

Agenda Packet – pages 28 – 31

The West Brunswick Regional Wastewater Treatment Plan is in need of upgrading in order to effectively manage the disposal of biosolids during wet weather. Over the past several years, the facility has experienced operational issues caused by the inability to dispose of biosolids during wet weather that have caused an increase in operational costs and are the underlying reason for Notices of Violation in previous years.

The county selected Dewberry Engineers to conduct a comprehensive study for a solution to effectively manage the disposal of biosolids from the facility. The cost of identified needed upgrades is estimated at $6.6 million. The Brunswick County Finance Department has developed several financing scenarios that are attached for your review.

Option 1 – Project funding could be borne by the individual participants based on their existing allocation in the facility

Option 2 – Use of 20-year debt funding term over a 5 or 20-year rate increase term to finance the project with an associated rate adjustment to meet the debt service requirements of the project.

      • 5-year rate increase option
      • 20-year rate increase option

Option 3 – County issuance of long-term debt (bond issuance).

Estimate Average Annual Cost
2022 Usage                            98,383,672
Usage %                                 6.9%
5-Year rate Increase            $145,596
20-Year Rate Increase         $36,399

Basics of Biosolids
Biosolids are a product of the wastewater treatment process. During wastewater treatment the liquids are separated from the solids. Those solids are then treated physically and chemically to produce a semisolid, nutrient-rich product known as biosolids. The terms ‘biosolids’ and ‘sewage sludge’ are often used interchangeably. 

Biosolids that are to be beneficially used must meet federal and state requirements. Examples of beneficial use include application to agricultural land and reclamation sites (e.g. mining sites). When applied to land at the appropriate agronomic rate, biosolids provide a number of benefits including nutrient addition, improved soil structure, and water reuse. Land application of biosolids also can have economic and waste management benefits (e.g., conservation of landfill space; reduced demand on non-renewable resources like phosphorus; and a reduced demand for synthetic fertilizers). Biosolids also may be disposed of by incineration, landfilling, or other forms of surface disposal.
For more information » click here

Update –
Discussed financing options for the Town’s portion of the upgrade to the wastewater treatment plant. County is currently polling; we need to tell them what our preference is. Based on polling results the County not us decides which option they want to implement. Chris recommended that we select option 2b the 20-year rate increase option. This would translate into a $36,399 increase for the Town. Motion was made to choose option 2b.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


8.  Discussion and Possible Direction on Establishing a Stormwater Management Program – Public Works Director Clemmons

Agenda Packet – pages 32 – 43 which is too large to include here

Stormwater has been a major challenge for years on the island and is getting worse with increased development.

I would like to request that the Board approve sending out a Request for Qualifications for engineering services to develop an island-wide stormwater master plan that would better equip the Town for these issues moving forward.

Update –
BOC’s approved sending out a Request for Qualifications for an island-wide Stormwater Master Plan. They said that Grant money may be available too.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously

The last communication that we were given indicated that we should be just six (6) to twelve (12) months from the Ocean Boulevard street paving and bike path projects. It seems to me that this is pretty late in the game to first request a stormwater master plan. Don’t you think we should have done this before now?  Can’t imagine that we can develop and implement a stormwater plan before these projects start. Well, I guess better late than never.


9.  Discussion and Possible Action on Encroachment Agreement between the Town and Jerry Fairchild (222 Ocean Boulevard East) – Inspections Director Evans

Agenda Packet – pages 44 – 48

The owner Jerry Fairchild of 222 Ocean Blvd East is asking for the town to approve an encroachment agreement so that he may have access across the portion of the dune located over the top of Hillside Drive. There are several of these agreements in place along this portion of road that is now below the frontal dune.

Previously reported –
Hillside Drive no longer exists and lies below / underneath the dune pictured
Property owner requested easement for walkway across the dunes
Right is not transferable that’s why we have to do this with each new owner
Walkway would encroach on the public right-of-way owned by the Town
Town policy has been to control access
We have approved this action several times before
Action would be consistent with what we have done for others
Staff recommends approval

Update –
Property owner has requested to encroach upon Hillside Drive, which is under the dunes, for the purpose of constructing   a  walkway  to  cross  the  dunes  and  gain  access  to  the  beach.  They need  to  have  an encroachment agreement in place before a permit can be issued. Standard practice staff recommended approval.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


  • 10.  Discussion and Possible Action on Jordan Boulevard Restrooms – Commissioner Kwiatkowski

Agenda Packet – page 49

The Board was recently informed that Staff considers that the public restroom facility should be relocated to Block Q because the existing structure is partly located on property not owned by the Town.

Restroom relocation has not been discussed/debated at Board level. What would have been done had the Board not decided to purchase Block Q? All opt ions should be put on the table and pros and cons considered before a decision is made.

Update –
Renovation of the restrooms has been in the budget for years. NCDOT has communicated to us that there are issues with locating public facilities in a federally controlled highway easement. Discussion about having to move the public restrooms under the bridge to Block Q properties. Request was made that staff bring all the possibilities to the Board. David stated that they do not have staff capability to do that type of analysis.

No decision was made – No action taken


11. Inlet Hazard Area Situation Update from Town Staff – Commissioner Kwiatkowski

Agenda Packet – page 50

Proposed changes to rules and IHA boundaries for several coastal municipalities, including THB, were the subject of a DCM public meeting in Brunswick County held in May. What comments were made by Town staff to argue against the proposed IHA boundaries? What are the expected final results of the THB IHA boundaries and the proposed rule changes? What are the anticipated impacts on THB property owners?

Inlet Hazard Areas

Update –
Discussion of the changes Coastal Resources Commission approved last month to both the rules and Inlet Hazard Area boundaries. Commissioner Kwiatkowski was asking the staff  what will be the impact on us here at Holden Beach. Timbo informed us that the boundary and vegetation line overall impact will be minimal to us.


12.  Discussion and Possible Action on Planning for Dry Sand Placement of Mats and Discussion of Potential Residential Use for Walkways – Commissioner Kwiatkowski

Agenda Packet – pages 51 – 54

Request for staff opinion on moving forward with planning for dry sand placement of mats at select THB public accesses to enhance handicap access to the beach based on information in the CRC-22-17 document (provided as background). Request for staff opinion to allow residential use of mats for beach walkways, including consideration as a potential solution to debris concerns arising from construction of long wooden walkways over multiple dunes.

Memo from North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality
Last year, the Commission amended the rules that established specific use standards  for structural pedestrian accessways (dune crossovers) that allow for public access to the beach. You will recall that the use standards previously limited these accessways to elevated, piled-supported structures terminating on the beach near the seaward toe of the frontal dune. Due to numerous local governments expressing interest in using synthetic or wooden roll-out matting as a handicap-accessible alternative for beach access, the accessway rules were amended to allow the use of these types of mats for public beach access. However, the use these materials was limited to State, federal or local governments due to concerns expressed by the NC Wildlife Resources Commission (NC WRC) and the U.S . Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) about potential adverse impacts on sea turtle habitat resulting from their use waterward of the frontal dune.

Since the amendments went into effect, Staff has had further discussion regarding the use of beach matting for residential applications as an alternative to structural accessways. As you are aware, during storms, dune crossovers (including stairways) can account for a great deal of the debris that wind up scattered across beaches and in waterways. Staff believes that by limiting matting to the same general standards that apply to structural accessways (six feet wide and no farther waterward than six feet from the toe of the dune), public access and wildlife protection goals will be met while reducing debris on the state’s beach during storm events. Residential application of matting material would adhere to the same standards previously approved including installation at grade and prohibiting extension onto the public trust beach.

In addition, in recent years the Commission has approved three petitions for variances from local governments (Carolina Beach, Topsail Beach and Kure Beach) seeking to install beach mats on the dry sand beach (seaward of the frontal or primary dune and vegetation line) in support of enhanced handicap accessibility. The Division and Commission have supported both variance petitions, and in both cases, efforts were taken to minimize risks to sea turtles, including changes in siting, size, and orientation of the proposed structures. However, following the Commission’s variance and issuance of a CAMA Minor Permit to the Town for installation of beach mats, the Town still assumes some liability for any “takes” of threatened or endangered species under the federal Endangered Species Act. For this reason, DCM has advised the Towns to consult directly with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to resolve this situation, potentially through the development of “Habitat Conservation Plans” or other formal approvals that can be issued by the USFWS for non-federal entities in accordance with the Endangered Species Act.

Staff are proposing a change to 07H.0308(c)(2)(C) to potentially allow beach mats on the dry sand beach without the need for a variance from the Commission, where they are sponsored by a local government for the purpose of enhanced handicap accessibility and are subject to review by the NC WRC and USFWS. The proposed amendments to 07K .0207 would also add residential use of matting material to the exemption language for beach accessways.

Coastal Resources Commission expands exemptions for beach mats
The NC Coastal Resources Commission approved new guidelines on Thursday that allows beach mats to be used in more ways. In a memo from the NC Department of Environmental Quality, staff says towns like Carolina Beach, Kure Beach, and Topsail Beach have petitioned to install the mats closer to the water. Additionally, staff says they’ve also had several requests from oceanfront homeowners to install the mats for private beach access instead of a typical wooden walkway. The commission approved an amendment at its meeting in Wilmington on Thursday allowing mats sponsored by local governments to be installed on dry sand without a variance from the commission. The amendment also allows the residential use of the matting for beach walkways.
Read more » click here

Mobi-Mat

Update –
The NC Coastal Resources Commission approved new guidelines that allows beach mats to be used in more ways. Public Comments speaker pointed out that accessibility is a need not a want. Discussion to allow dry sand placement of mats at some public beach accesses for handicap use and possibly for residential walkways too. Commissioner Kwiatkowski would like to see this done for next season. Motion made was to have staff make recommendation where mats can be utilized.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


13.  Discussion and Possible Approval of Ordinance 22-21, An Ordinance Enacting and Adopting a Supplement to the Code of Ordinances of the Town of Holden Beach, North Carolina (Supplement 17) – Town Clerk Finnell

Agenda Packet – pages 55 – 56, plus separate packet

Supplement 17

The latest supplement to the Holden Beach Code of Ordinances is included for your review (Attachment 1). The supplement codifies the ordinances the  Board  approved since the last supplement.

If you approve Ordinance 22-2 l (Attachment 2) that adopts the supplement at Tuesday’s meeting, please follow the instruction sheet and replace the old pages in your Code books. If you prefer, you could bring me your book and the supplement, and I will do it for you.

Update –
Housekeeping item adopted as submitted.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


14. Discussion and Possible Approval of Resolution 22-08, Resolution Approving Truist Signature Card – Town Clerk Finnell

Agenda Packet – pages 57 – 58

Historically, the official signatories for the Town’s Truist accounts are the mayor, mayor pro tern and two staff members. Resolution 22-08 updates the current signature card by designating Mayor Holden, Mayor Pro Tern Smith, Town Manager Hewett and Fiscal Operations Clerk McRainey as the official signatories.

Staff recommends approval of the resolution.

Update –
Housekeeping item – update of signatories.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


15.  Discussion and Possible Action on Ordinance 22-22, An Ordinance Amending Ordinance 22-14, The Revenues and Appropriations Ordinance for Fiscal Year 2022 – 2023 (Amendment No. 1) – Budget & Fiscal Analyst McRainey

Agenda Packet – pages 59 – 60

This amendment is to move outstanding appropriations from fiscal year 2022 to the current fiscal year 2023. The appropriations were encumbered in last year’s budget but due to supply chain issues the products /services were not delivered before June 30, 2022, making this amendment necessary.

Staff recommends approval of Ordinance 22-22

Update –
Housekeeping item adopted as submitted.
Moved funds of $425,609.13

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


  • 16.  Town Manager’s Report

Paid Parking

Revenue
$388,991 in revenue through August with another $28,586  in receivables due for September as of this date for a total of $417,577

ExpensesProgram expenses so far total $50,863

TotalNet program proceeds as of this date calculated to be $366,714

FEMA storm damage repair project
Requested formal project closeout
Special Obligation Bond has been retired
.      *
Interest has been approved for reimbursement
.      *
$500k in eligible project expenses reimbursement still pending until final inspection
         a.
Could take a year or more

Notice of Violation (NOV) sand compatibility
not as expected and will need to be monitored for the next two (2) years

Previously reported – July 2022
Rolled over the special obligation bond of $4.28M. We will incur interest payment charges of $617K, eligibility for reimbursement has not been determined yet

Previously reported – August 2022
David reported that as of last week the Town has received all but $45K in cost from the $23M FEMA beach renourishment project not counting interest cost. Reimbursement on the interest cost on the FEMA loan is still undetermined but we believe it is an allowable expense.

Pier Grant status
CAMA Acquisition – $180k contract award reduced to $150k
.      *
Difference in estimate vs. actual purchase price
PARTF Acquisition – $500k reimbursement award for pier purchase
CAMA Access – application submitted for $50k grant

In Case You Missed It –

Hurricane Vehicle Decals
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. These are to be used only for your primary vehicles and must be displayed in the lower left-hand corner of the windshield.  Click here for more information on decals. 

Upcoming Events

Saturday, October 1, 2022 – The Run HB event will be held from 6:45 until 11:30. There will be significant traffic slowdowns during this time and the bridge will be closing for the half-marathon participants to cross around 8am. Please plan your travel accordingly.

 Saturday, October 8, 2022 – Cycle NC will end their 400+ mile tour from the mountains of NC to the coast at Holden Beach. The majority of the riders will arrive between 11 and 2. The bridge will not close for this event. Please join us in welcoming the cyclists!

Previously reported – April 2022
Mountain to Coast Ride
The first Cycle North Carolina Mountains to Coast Ride was held in 1999. In the twenty-one years since, the Mountains to Coast Ride has traversed the state using a different week-long route each year. The Mountains to Coast Ride is not a race, but a recreational trek across the state using scenic back roads. The ride is designed to promote physical fitness, good health, and the scenic beauty of North Carolina.

David announced the 2022 ride terminus will be Holden Beach. This is another activity that gives us exposure on a much broader scale.


17.   Mayor’s Comments

Previously reported – August 2022
We are going into the more active hurricane period which is from August to October – be prepared, have a plan! Mayor Holden met with the Town staff and reviewed responsibilities, and they are on top of things. He plans to meet with the rental property management companies to review the Town plans during an emergency.

From the Mayor’s Desk (08/29/22)

The Town of Holden Beach is declaring September 2022 as Preparedness Month to raise awareness about the importance of preparing for disasters and emergencies that could happen at any time. Click here to read the full proclamation.

As mayor/emergency management director, I encourage all citizens to develop their emergency plan, build an emergency kit and communicate your plan to your household. Click here for some helpful information you can use while developing your plan. Also, make sure you have your vehicle decals in  place. Decals must be displayed in the lower left-hand corner of the windshield in the event we have an evacuation.

It is important to be prepared for potential emergencies now, do not wait.

From the Mayor’s Desk (09/24/22)
There is a hurricane possibly approaching Florida. Please monitor the weather forecast and make your preliminary plans now as we are in the heart of hurricane season. Click here for some helpful information you can use while developing your plan.


18. Executive Session Pursuant to North Carolina General Statute 143-318.11(a)(6), Personnel (Commissioner Murdock), North Carolina General Statute 143-318.11(a)(3), Consult with the Attorney (Town Manager Hewett) and North Carolina General Statute 143-318.11(a)(1), To Prevent the Disclosure of Privileged Information (Town Clerk Finnell)

No decision was made – No action taken


General Comments –



BOC’s Meeting

The Board of Commissioners’ next Regular Meeting is scheduled on the third Tuesday of the month, October 18th
.


 


  • Hurricane Season
    .
    For more information
    » click here

    .
    Be prepared – have a plan!.
  • ...


NOAA still expects above-normal Atlantic hurricane season

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather experts still expect the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season to have above-normal activity. NOAA released Thursday its annual mid-season update to the 2022 outlook issued in May by the Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service. Since the May report, which covers the six-month hurricane season that began June 1 and ends Nov. 30, forecasters have slightly decreased the likelihood of an above-normal Atlantic hurricane season from 65% to a 60% chance. Meanwhile, the likelihood of near-normal activity has risen to 30% and the chances remain at 10% for a below-normal season. NOAA’s update to the 2022 outlook calls for 14-20 named storms, which have winds of 39 mph or greater. Six to 10 of those named storms could become hurricanes with winds of 74 mph or greater. Of those, three to five could become major hurricanes with winds of 111 mph or greater. NOAA provides these ranges with a 70% confidence. “We’re just getting into the peak months of August through October for hurricane development, and we anticipate that more storms are on the way,” said NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad, in a statement. Erik Heden, warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service forecast office for Morehead City, told Coastal Review Monday that the peak of hurricane season is not until around Sept. 10. “Typically, the season really doesn’t get going until later in August through October. It’s too early to let our guard down, we aren’t even close to the typical peak yet,” he said. “Lastly, it only takes one storm to make a difference in your lives. Take this quiet time in the season to finish your hurricane kit and plan.” He recommended visiting www.weather.gov/MHX/hurricaneprep for help with a hurricane kit and plan. Heden said his office is offering more hurricane talks ahead, including one at 9 a.m. Wednesday in Emerald Isle board meeting room, 7500 Emerald Drive, and 6 p.m. Aug. 16 in North Topsail Beach Town Hall, 2008 Loggerhead Court. Sign up to virtually attend the North Topsail Beach talk. Two talks are planned for later this month on the Outer Banks, as well.
“Communities and families should prepare now for the remainder of what is still expected to be an active hurricane season,” said Ken Graham, director of the National Weather Service. “Ensure that you are ready to take action if a hurricane threatens your area by developing an evacuation plan and gathering hurricane supplies now, before a storm is bearing down on your community.”So far, the season has seen three named storms and no hurricanes in the Atlantic Basin. An average hurricane season produces 14 named storms, of which seven become hurricanes, including three major hurricanes. The outlook is for overall seasonal activity and is not a landfall forecast. Landfalls are largely governed by short-term weather patterns that are currently only predictable within about one week of a storm potentially reaching a coastline, according to NOAA. I urge everyone to remain vigilant as we enter the peak months of hurricane season,” Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo said in a statement. “The experts at NOAA will continue to provide the science, data and services needed to help communities become hurricane resilient and climate-ready for the remainder of hurricane season and beyond.” There are several atmospheric and oceanic conditions that still favor an active hurricane season. This includes La Niña conditions, which are favored to remain in place for the rest of 2022 and could allow the ongoing high-activity era conditions to dominate, or slightly enhance hurricane activity. In addition to a continued La Niña, weaker tropical Atlantic trade winds, an active west African Monsoon and likely above-normal Atlantic sea-surface temperatures set the stage for an active hurricane season and are reflective of the ongoing high-activity era for Atlantic hurricanes. NOAA’s hurricane science and forecasting information is available at Hurricane Season Media Resource Guide and the National Hurricane Center provides the latest on tropical storm and hurricane activity in the Atlantic. “Although it has been a relatively slow start to hurricane season, with no major storms developing in the Atlantic, this is not unusual  and we therefore cannot afford to let our guard down,” said FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell. She recommends being proactive by downloading the FEMA app and visiting Ready.gov or Listo.gov for preparedness tips. “And most importantly, make sure you understand your local risk and follow directions from your state and local officials.”
Read more » click here


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


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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

https://lousviews.com/ 

09 – News & Views

Lou’s Views
News & Views / September Edition


Calendar of Events –


King Mackerel Tournament - CR
U.S. Open King Mackerel Fishing Tournament
September 29th thru October 1st
Southport


The
U.S. Open King Mackerel Tournament has taken place since 1979 and is held annually the first week in October. The U.S. Open is one of the largest king mackerel tournaments on the East Coast and part of the SKA (Southern Kingfish Association) Tournament Trail. The tournament now attracts almost 400 boats annually.
For more information » click here



Sunset at Sunset
October 1st
Sunset Beach


Held the first Saturday in October each year, Sunset at Sunset is the Town of Sunset Beach’s Community Block Party.
 The 15th annual autumn event is scheduled to happen again this year, in front of Ingram Planetarium on Sunset Boulevard in Sunset
Beach.
For more information » click here 



Riverfest

October 7th thru 9th 
Wilmington        

 

Wilmington’s Riverfest is celebrated in October since 1979 and runs from the foot of Market Street to Cape Fear Community College over a half mile of free family entertainment.
For more information » click here


Oyster Festival Logo - CR

N.C. Oyster Festival
October 15th & 16th

Shallotte

.

..
The annual North Carolina Oyster Festival has taken place since 1978
. Come celebrate everything Oyster with a variety of foods, crafts, contests, children’s activities, and musical performances at Mulberry Park in Shallotte. Signature Festival events include the Oyster Shucking Contest, Oyster Eating Contest, and Oyster Stew Cook-off.
For more information » click here


N.C. Festival by the Sea
October 29th & 30th
Holden Beach


Hosted by the Holden Beach Merchants Association this two day festival occurs on the last full weekend in October. This two day event is kicked off with a parade down the Holden Beach causeway. There is a fishing tournament, horseshoe tournament, and a sandcastle building contest. Vendors provide food, arts and crafts, amusement rides and other activities. There is live musical entertainment both days at the Holden Beach’s Pavilion.
For more information »  click here


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


Calendar of Events Island –


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


Calendar of Events Island –



Run Holden Beach

October 1st
Holden Beach, NC
.


The seventh annual event includes three races –
5K                                  – 6:45 AM
Half Marathon         – 8:00 AM
1 Mile Turtle Trot    – 8:30 AM
After you’ve finished, plan to hang around a while. After party will have a DJ playing your favorite tunes, post-race food, beer, and games.
For more information » click here

Saturday, October 1, 2022 – The Run HB event will be held from 6:45 until 11:30. There will be significant traffic slowdowns during this time and the bridge will be closing for the half-marathon participants to cross around 8am. Please plan your travel accordingly.


Mountain to Coast Ride
The first Cycle North Carolina Mountains to Coast Ride was held in 1999. In the twenty-one years since, the Mountains to Coast Ride has traversed the state using a different week-long route each year. The Mountains to Coast Ride is not a race, but a recreational trek across the state using scenic back roads. The ride is designed to promote physical fitness, good health, and the scenic beauty of North Carolina.

David announced the 2022 ride terminus will be Holden Beach. This is another activity that gives us exposure on a much broader scale.

Saturday, October 8, 2022 – Cycle NC will end their 400+ mile tour from the mountains of NC to the coast at Holden Beach. The majority of the riders will arrive between 11 and 2. The bridge will not close for this event. Please join us in welcoming the cyclists!


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


Reminders –


Solid Waste Pick-Up Schedule
GFL Environmental change in service, trash pickup will be once a week. This year September 24th will be the  the last Saturday trash pick-up until June. Trash collection will go back to Tuesdays only.


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


Solid Waste Pick-up Schedule – starting October once a week

Recyclingstarting October every other week


 

Pets on the Beach Strand
Pets – Chapter 90 / Animals / 90.20
Effective September 10th

 

.
. 1. Pets allowed back on the beach strand during the hours of 9:00am through 5:00pm
. 2.
Dog’s need to be on a leash
. 3.
Owner’s need to clean up after their animals



. .


A Second Helping


.

 

They just completed the eighteenth year of the program. For the last thirteen weeks they have collected food on Saturday mornings in front of Beach Mart; the food is distributed to the needy in Brunswick County.  Their food collections have now exceeded two hundred and eighty thousand (280,000) pounds of food since this program began in June of 2005. Hunger exists everywhere in this country.  Thanks to the Holden Beach vacationers for donating again this year!  Cash donations are gratefully accepted. One hundred percent (100%) of these cash donations are used to buy more food. You can be assured that the money will be very well spent.

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

Website:
http://www.secondhelping.us



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

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

Spraying is complaint based, so keep the calls coming!


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

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



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

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

* One extra trash can per every 2 bedrooms.

.
.
§ 50.08 RENTAL HOMES.

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


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

§157.087 BUILDING NUMBERS.

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

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



BOC’s Meeting
The Board of Commissioners’ next Regular Meeting is scheduled on the third Tuesday of the month, October 18th
.


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


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


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


Waupaca Elevator Recalls to Inspect Elevators Due to Injury Hazard

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

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


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



Neighborhood Watch –

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


Upon Further Review –


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

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

Previously reported – July 2022
The NC Department of Transportation has informed the town that due to permitting issues raised during their review of the Ocean Boulevard Repaving/Bike Lane Project, construction will not begin in September as previously planned. Construction is now scheduled to start after the first of the year. The project will still have a completion date of Memorial Day.

Previously reported – June 2022
Execution of the agreement with DOT is required to construct the Ocean Boulevard Bike Lanes Project this fall in conjunction with the resurfacing of Ocean Boulevard. The project is estimated at $1,722,364 of which 42% or $723,393 is the Town’s share. The remaining 58% or $998,971 is funded by the Grand Strand Area Transportation Study (GSATS). The Board authorized the execution of the Transportation Improvement Agreement with the Department of Transportation.

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

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

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

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


Corrections & Amplifications –


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

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

EVACUATION, CURFEW & DECALS

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

How do I get decals for my vehicle…?

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


Turtle Watch Program –

Turtle Watch Program – 2022

Current nest count – (65) as of 09/24/22
*
Average annual number of nests is 57

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

 

Total number of nests historically –

        • 2012: 48
        • 2013: 73
        • 2014: 19
        • 2015: 53
        • 2016: 52
        • 2017: 50
        • 2018: 30
        • 2019: 105
        • 2020: 65
        • 2021: 68
        • 2022: 65

Nesting Season
The 2022 sea turtle nesting season is “officially” over for the Holden Beach! It has been over 14 days since we’ve had a mother turtle appearance on our beach. That makes 65 nests for this year! That doesn’t mean the turtle season is over. There are still 26 nest on the beach that have not hatched. We anticipate being on the beach “watching” nests until early October.


Groups remind public: Disturbing sea turtle nests a crime
Skeptics blamed the wind. It was particularly windy during a series of days last month on the Crystal Coast when stakes marking off sea turtle nests were plucked out of the sand and the tape to them torn down. But the evidence, according to Dale Baquer, Emerald Isle Sea Turtle Patrol program coordinator, proved otherwise. Four nights in a row at four different nests, a single stake had been pulled from the sand. Tape used to mark off the nesting sites was ripped down. On the two nights that immediately followed, signs at two other nests were plucked up and tossed onto the shore. “The first night there were actually foot prints and a beer can left there,” Baquer said. “That’s why I was sure someone had done it.” Be it curiosity, juvenile antics, or flat out malicious intent, sea turtle nests at beaches on North Carolina’s coastal islands are subject to human interference each nesting season. The season, which begins in May and ends in October, falls within the three busiest beach tourism months, heightening the odds of human-to-nest encounters. “It’s inevitable when you have so many visitors coming to North Carolina to visit the beaches here,” said Matthew Godfrey, a sea turtle biologist with the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission. “We do have turtle nests pretty much everywhere in the state on all islands.” There’s no indication of an uptick this season in nest tampering, Godfrey said, but incidents where it’s apparent humans are purposefully messing with nests, like those in Emerald Isle, have been reported to his office this year. Sea turtle nest monitoring is mostly done through volunteer-based programs. Monitoring includes identifying nest locations, marking them off, and tracking when eggs at each nest hatch. Sea turtle monitoring programs are largely volunteer-based on all but one of the state’s coastal islands where turtles nest. Federally owned Browns Island of the coast of Camp Lejeune is strictly off-limits to people because of unexploded ordnance on the property and live-firing training exercises conducted in the area. The only option for tracking the numbers of nests on the island are through aerial surveys. Godfrey said monitoring efforts generally work well protecting turtle eggs during incubation. Eggs typically take anywhere from 50 to 80 days to hatch. But without a set of eyes on each nest 24 hours a day, seven days a week, it’s practically impossible to prevent even the occasional human disturbance. “Sometimes it’s unclear why people interfere or mess with the areas that have been marked off, whether they rip down the tape or pull up the stakes,” Godfrey said. “It could be just curiosity. Sometimes people accidentally walk into them at night. There’s definitely some accidental or curiosity-based incidents, not malicious. In general, people are pretty respectful.” Over a decade ago, there were a few instances where eggs were removed from nests. Sea turtles are federally protected. Anyone caught disturbing them or their nests face the possibility of hefty fines and possible jail time. Last year, a group of teenagers were caught after tampering with a series of nest areas on Emerald Isle’s shore where they yanked stakes from the sand. Baquer said the teens were turned over to local police. The outcome of that case was not released to the public because the teenagers were minors. “People breaking our stakes and pulling the tape down doesn’t seem harmful, but the thing is we set up the stakes and measure where the eggs are and use (the stakes) as a reference point as to how to find our eggs,” she said. When it became evident someone — it’s unknown whether more than one person was involved — was tampering with nests there last month, Baquer took to social media, asking for the community’s help. “After I put that post out it stopped,” she said. “I think my post says it all. It doesn’t seem like a big deal, but it could be a very costly game for them. Sea turtles are protected and there is up to a $50,000 fine and a year in jail. None of our eggs were harmed, but you can still get yourself in trouble tampering with sea turtle nests. Not everybody has to be a sea turtle lover, but just do no harm.” That said, a majority of people who live in and visit Emerald Isle respect the nests and turtles, Baquer said.“They come to our excavations. We talk to them and let them know what the rules are. Usually they’re really good at helping us,” she said. So far this season, more than 1,900 nests have been documented on North Carolina beaches. Thirty nests had been documented on Emerald Isle this season. That’s not a record, but it is a larger-than-average number, Baquer said. Roughly 10 nests there have hatched. Farther south at Oak Island in Brunswick County, more than half of the 136 nests hatched. Suzan Bell, co-coordinator of the Oak Island Sea Turtle Protection Program, declined to go into details about nests there that were vandalized, saying the issue appears to have been resolved since getting the word out on social media. “I think we addressed it and we’ve only had a couple of issues this season, it’s not been an uptick for us,” she said. This year’s nests are the second highest number on record. “We are one of the top numbers in the state,” Bell said. “There are so many more people on the beach. It is critical for us to have folks follow the rules.”
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Odds & Ends –


Not all East Coast states have a plan for protecting citizens from the climate crisis

North Carolina became the object of some national scorn when it ordered coastal regulators a decade ago to ignore the latest scientific predictions of how fast the seas would rise in the coming decades.

Proponents of the short-lived 2012 state law said embracing worrisome projections on sea-level rise, which they claimed were based on unproven scientific research techniques, would prompt costlier home insurance and anti-development alarmism along the tourism-dependent coast.

Critics, including comedian Stephen Colbert, accused state officials of “outlawing the climate models” and blinding themselves to the effects of climate change.

Then two record-setting flooding events, Hurricanes Matthew in 2016 and Florence in 2018, devastated many of the same parts of Eastern North Carolina.

Today, North Carolina is one of 13 states and 34 cities that have added a chief resilience officer and, in most cases, an office of recovery and resiliency, according to the Institute for Sustainable Development.

Dr. Laura Hogshead, director of the N.C. Office of Recovery and Resiliency, said the drumbeat of natural disasters occurring in quick succession helped sway Tar Heel State political and public opinion that it can’t be business as usual anymore, with rebuilding as the plan.

“It’s not a political lightning rod anymore because there’s a recognition that flooding, for example, is getting worse, more frequent,” she said. “We might not always agree on how it’s happening, but we do agree that we have to prepare better for it.”

Despite an increasingly divided political landscape, Congress has passed 21 bipartisan bills that address some aspects of resilience.

Ward said they largely focus on issues shared by officials from different areas, taking a local approach to addressing the issue of climate change rather than a big government, all-encompassing approach.

The Resilient Federal Forests Act of 2021, for example, gives authority and resources to agencies and officials in rural areas to help improve forest health and reduce the risk of massive, destructive wildfires through science-based, active management practices.

The National Ocean and Coastal Security Improvements Act, also passed in 2021, does largely the same thing for coastal communities to help them prepare for and respond to coastal threats, including extreme weather events.
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Abridged version of article


Rising seas will force NC beach towns to move. The idea of leaving isn’t easy.

Approximately 90% of North Carolina’s 320 miles of coastline are bordered by barrier islands. Unlike manmade fortifications, they don’t stay in place, and never have. They move constantly, growing and shrinking, even disappearing, depending on conditions such as sea levels.

Sea levels are predicted to rise 11 to 13 inches along southeastern North Carolina by 2050, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Communities like Ocean Isle Beach try to counteract these forces by freezing their islands in time through beach replenishment or building sand trap systems called “groins.” Experts rate it a losing battle. Stopping barrier island movement won’t work because “you’re pouring sand in the top of the hourglass as the sand continues to flow out the bottom,” said Robert Young, director of Western Carolina University’s Program for the Study of Developed Shorelines. “Most oceanfront communities spend huge amounts of money trying to defend what is ultimately indefensible,” Young said.

Scientific research into the effectiveness of terminal groins has found that the projects aren’t cost-effective and might cause more harm than good with the threat of sea-level rise. North Carolina’s Coastal Resources Commission found in 2010 that they can protect some properties at the end of barrier islands, but it recommended they be used “after all other non-structural erosion control responses, including relocation of threatened structures, are found to be impracticable.”
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Abridged version of article


This and That –

Shallotte brewery to close this weekend after four years in the Brunswick beer scene
One of Brunswick County’s only breweries will close its doors for good this Sunday. Red Hare Brewing Company in Shallotte announced in a social media post-Friday this would be its final weekend in business. “Over the past four years, our Red Hare Team has had the pleasure of becoming a part of the wonderful Shallotte community,” the brewery shared on its Facebook Page. “We cannot express how thankful we are for your support & the relationships we have made throughout the years.” The brewery’s taproom, 4802 Main St., has been part of the Brunswick County beer scene since 2017 when it became the second brewery to open in the county. Red Hare Brewing originated in Marietta, Georgia, and the company plans to focus its energy back on its Georgia location. The Shallotte facility opened to produce a new line of sour, wild-fermented, and barrel-aged beers as well as to continue growing distribution of its flagship lineup of suds. Red Hare’s closing leaves Brunswick County with two breweries currently operating: Makai Brewing Company in Ocean Isle and Lonerider in Oak Island. However, Brunswick County’s brewing scene is preparing to take off, the StarNews reported in August. At least seven new projects are in the works in Leland, Southport, Bald Head Island, and Oak Island.
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Name:             Rx Restaurant and Bar
Cuisine:          Southern Comfort
Location:       421 Castle Street, Wilmington NC
Contact:         910.399.3080 / https://www.rxwilmington.com
Food:              Average / Very Good / Excellent / Exceptional
Service:          Efficient / Proficient / Professional   / Expert
Ambience:     Drab / Plain / Distinct / Elegant
Cost:                Inexpensive <=17 / Moderate <=22 / Expensive <=27 / Exorbitant <=40
Rating:           Three Stars
Rx is located in downtown Wilmington on the corner of Fifth and Castle; in a residential neighborhood, away from any other downtown eatery. The name Rx pays homage to the building’s heritage, occupying the old Hall’s Drug Store. Rx offers an upscale version of Southern comfort food alongside traditional American favorites in a comfortable relaxed environment. The locally sourced menu is ingredient driven and changes daily in order to bring in the freshest ingredients that they can. I now know what all the hype is about. They could easily become one of my favorite restaurants. I’d put it on your short-list of must try Wilmington restaurants. 

OpenTable, a provider of online restaurant reservations, recently released its list of the 50 Best Southern Cuisine Restaurants in America for 2018 and RX Restaurant and Bar is on it.

Rebrand, relaunch: Castle Street restaurant adds oyster farming, ‘brewstillery’ to new casual approach
Covid-19 has changed the way many industries operate, restaurants included. James and Sarah Doss can attest to this firsthand. Like other restaurateurs, they closed and reopened their Castle Street eatery, Rx, numerous times throughout the pandemic — due to both virus spread and health of staff and shutdown and protocol mandates. The Dosses said adapting Rx food to takeout wasn’t something easily approachable, seeing as the menu leaned more toward fine dining. “It really illuminated the challenges of our industry and our long-term sustainability,” Sarah said. While the struggles haven’t been easy, they have provided space for reflection, which have guided the Dosses toward rebranding their Southern restaurant. Enter Rx Chicken and Oysters, slated to reopen by December, if all goes according to plan (currently, it’s a location for locally filmed “The Supremes at Earl’s All-You-Can-Eat”). “What we’re changing to is a little more of our original vision when we arrived,” James said. All flavors will remain seasonal, with the core menu rotating four times a year; previously, it switched daily. The restaurant is amping up its fried chicken menu, too, adding buckets that feature whole birds from Hampstead’s Changin’ Ways Farms. The idea is to reach all diners and price points, Sarah said: “We will have things that are on the higher end, too, so it’s kind of like a customer’s choice.” In July, Rx celebrated a decade serving Wilmingtonians, though the restaurant has been closed since February. The Dosses have been concentrating on renovations and mapping out changes. Covid-19 isn’t completely done with the industry either, as seen by rising inflation and supply-chain issues. An electrical panel needed for the kitchen is not expected to arrive until mid-November, the owners indicated. The kitchen is being transformed to become more energy efficient, with solar panels installed and appliances changing from electric to gas. “It’s really about going green,” Sarah said. Their newly launched oyster farming business also adds to that goal. “One oyster filters 50 gallons of water every day,” Sarah said. “That’s really important to us.” The Dosses are subleasing half-an-acre in Topsail and a full acre in Stump Sound to harvest the oysters. ”We seeded 500,000 this spring,” James said. The restaurateurs established an apprenticeship under James Hargrove of Middle Sound Mariculture, learning the ins and outs of the industry. Their first batch — which will likely produce 60% of what was planted — won’t be ready until next year, they estimate. The long-term goal is to sell the oysters in the restaurant but also wholesale. The couple also began harvesting clams, which James said have been hard to come by locally. They have planted 30,000 on the same acreage. “We still plan on buying from local fishermen,” Sarah said. “Because we also plan to have more seafood on the menu. We have become a bit more connected with some of our local shellfish growers and fishermen since farming.” Rx Chicken and Oysters will have a menu of tacos — both fish and pulled pork — and more sandwiches, including a Crystal Coast shrimp or oyster burger (fried shellfish piled with homemade coleslaw and ketchup). “Every time we go to Morehead that’s our first stop in and our last stop out,” Sarah said. A raw bar section will feature Rx’s Lucy Beas oysters (named after the owners’ dogs), which James said will also allow for more price control. “I’ve seen some oysters go up to $5 apiece at restaurants,” he said. “We are thinking $2 or $2.50 apiece and we will have a happy hour.” The restaurant’s staples will still be served, such as the wings and the chili cheeseburger, once only offered during weekend brunch but soon to be available daily. Specials will rotate, including barbecue and the famed pig ears appetizer. High-quality local ingredients will be the base of every dish, also to be carried into another outpost of the brand: Rx Brewstillery. Located next to the restaurant is a home the Dosses purchased to become the tasting room and maker space of both craft beer and spirits. They have enlisted the help of their employees to run the operation, including Trae Wheeler, who is training to become the brewmaster, and Sarah Wiland, who is finishing up her biology degree at UNCW, to focus on the distillery side. Gin, vodka, moonshine and liqueurs will be made, while the brewery will start off with a light pale ale, Kolsch, pilsner, stout, sour and IPA. But the Dosses don’t expect first-batch releases to come until a year or so down the road. “We’re going to ease into it,” Sarah said. The long-term vision is to go into distribution and wholesale. “We’re just diversifying the business,” James added, “and really getting back to our roots, to something that’s just a little bit more fun.”
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Name:           Savorez
Cuisine:        Latin American
Location:     402 Chestnut St, Wilmington, NC 28401
Contact:       910.833.8894 / https://savorez.com/
Food:            Average / Very Good / Excellent / Exceptional
Service:        Efficient / Proficient / Professional / Expert
Ambience:   Drab / Plain / Distinct / Elegant
Cost:              Inexpensive <=$18 / Moderate <=$24 / Expensive <=$30 / Exorbitant <=$40
Rating:         Two Stars
After years in area kitchens like K-38 and Ceviche’s, local chef Sam Cahoon opened Savorez, his first restaurant. The name says it all, Savorez is flavors in Spanish. Savorez spices up homegrown southern style with Latin flavors with a focus on fresh sustainable local ingredients. They are located just off the beaten path, nothing fancy, the place is really small with seating for only thirty (30) people. The venue is just too small for how popular they are, and they do not accept reservations. The menu is the same for lunch and dinner, so it is a better lunch than dinner venue. Surprisingly, according to a Yelp report, Savorez is the Best New Restaurant to try in North Carolina in 2018, frankly it did not live up to that kind of rating.

Wilmington’s ‘Savorez’ named top brunch spot in North Carolina
Everyone has their favorite eating spot around the Cape Fear, but a local brunch location has received top honors in a recent Yelp post. The post listed the top-reviewed brunch spot in every state around the country. For North Carolina, the number one reviewed brunch spot is Savorez, according to Yelp. Savorez is located at 402 Chestnut Street in Wilmington. It currently has 4.5 stars out of 5 stars from 478 reviews.
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Factoid That May Interest Only Me –


NC visitor spending increased 45% last year
Compared to 2020, visitor spending across the state was up 45% in 2021. Visitor spending was $79 million a day in 2021 statewide, and $6.4 million in visitor-generated taxes per day, according to a study the North Carolina Chamber of Commerce released Wednesday. The numbers show a strong recovery seen from 2020, and for many counties from 2019, officials said. All 100 counties in the state benefited, including those on the coast. For example, Dare County spending increased by 30%, or $1.8 billion, and also had an increase in direct tourism employees of 4%, or 12,295. Top percentage spending increases from 2020 were in Gates County, up 83%, and Beaufort County, up 71%. Gates also had a 25% increase in tourism employment. “The strong economic results for one of our most vital industries speak to the resilience of our local tourism partners and to the state’s enduring appeal,” said North Carolina Commerce Secretary Machelle Baker Sanders. “We celebrate the qualities that make North Carolina an attractive destination and are inspired by the people who provide visitors to our state an outstanding travel experience.” The preliminary findings are based on an annual visitor spending study commissioned by Visit North Carolina, a unit of the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina, and conducted by Tourism Economics in collaboration with the U.S. Travel Association. The annual spending study provides preliminary estimates of domestic and international traveler expenditures as well as employment, payroll income, and state and local tax revenues directly generated by these expenditures. The statistical model draws on detailed data from VisitNC as well as data derived from federal and state government sources, nationally known private and nonprofit travel organizations, and other travel industry sources. Domestic travel statewide increased in 2021, as international visitation lagged. The spending total of $28.9 billion fell about 1% below the record set in 2019. The sum represents a 45% increase from pandemic-stricken 2020. “Just as we’re gratified by the achievement statewide in 2021, the county-level report underscores the value of each destination,” said Wit Tuttell, director of Visit NC. “This is where travelers experience the state, from its natural beauty to the character of our people. It’s also the heart of the economic impact, the sustenance for thousands of businesses and local governments. We look forward to raising the arc even higher as we welcome more people to places they won’t find anywhere else.”
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2021 Visitor Impact for Brunswick County released
Domestic and international visitors to and within Brunswick County spent $975.11 million in 2021, an increase of 33.4% from 2020. Brunswick County ranked 6th among the state’s 100 counties in visitor spending in 2021. This data comes from an annual study commissioned by Visit North Carolina, a unit of the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina. Bonnie Cox, Chairperson of the Brunswick County Tourism Development Authority, responded to the release of the 2021 visitor spending data, “Tourism has remained strong in Brunswick County throughout the pandemic. In fact, 2021 was a record year for visitor spending in our county. Tourism is a major economic driver for Brunswick County’s overall economy.”
Tourism impact highlights for 2021
The travel and tourism industry directly employed more than 4900 people in Brunswick County. Total payroll generated by the tourism industry in Brunswick County was $191.9 million. State tax revenue generated in Brunswick County totaled $32.3 million through state sales and excise taxes, and taxes on personal and corporate income. About $45.9 million in local taxes were generated from sales and property tax revenue from travel-generated and travel-supported businesses. These statistics come from the “Economic Impact of Travel on North Carolina Counties 2021,” which can be accessed at partners.visitnc.com/economic-impact-studies. The study was prepared for Visit North Carolina by Tourism Economics in collaboration with the U.S. Travel Association. Statewide, visitor spending in 2021 rebounded by 44.9% to reach $28.9 billion. Following the devastating pandemic-related losses of the 2020, the total fell just short of the record $29.22 spent in 2019. Direct tourism employment increased 10.5% to 197,500. “These findings are something that everyone in North Carolina can celebrate,” said Visit NC Director Wit Tuttell. “They’re a testament to the resilience of our businesses and our residents, and to the enduring appeal of destinations that include everything a traveler might want. The economic well-being of the state and all its communities rises with the pleasures travelers find in the natural beauty of our public spaces, our culinary traditions and innovation, our remarkable towns and our spirited cities. North Carolina can claim it all.”

Statewide highlights include:

      • Total spending by domestic and international visitors in North Carolina reached $28.9 billion in 2021.
      • Visitors spent more than $79 million per day in North Carolina. That spending added $6.4 million per day to state and local tax revenues (about $3.3 million in state taxes and $3.1 million in local taxes).
      • North Carolina hosted nearly 45 million visitors in 2021.

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Hot Button Issues

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


Climate
For more information » click here

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


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

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


 

GenX
For more information » click here
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DEQ approves permit to reduce PFAS contamination in the Cape Fear River
The North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality has issued the discharge permit for a treatment system to remove PFAS compounds from contaminated groundwater on the Chemours Fayetteville Works site. The treatment system is part of the larger barrier wall remediation project to substantially reduce PFAS entering the Cape Fear River and impacting downstream communities.
After a comprehensive review and public process, DEQ’s Division of Water Resources has issued a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit for a granular activated carbon (GAC) filtration treatment system. After consideration of the public comments and further review of data and information contained in the permit record, the permit limits for the three indicator compounds have been significantly reduced beyond the 99% removal required in the Consent Order. During an initial period to optimize the performance of the system, the permit limits will be: 120 ng/L (ppt) for GenX, 100 ng/L (ppt) for PMPA and 320 ng/L (ppt) for PFMOAA. After the 180-day optimization period, the limits will drop to less than 10 ppt for GenX, 10 ppt for PMPA, and less than 20 ppt for PFMOAA. These limits represent an estimated removal efficiency of greater than 99.9%. The NPDES permit includes weekly monitoring upstream and downstream of the treatment system during barrier wall construction to track progress and efficiency. It also allows for an evaluation after one year to incorporate new data and further tighten limits if appropriate. The permit can also be reopened to add limitations based on new toxicity data, introduction of Federal or state PFAS standards, and if another PFAS compound breaks through the treatment system more quickly than the three current indicator parameters. The massive remediation project is the largest of its kind to address PFAS. The system involves a mile-long underground barrier wall, more than 70 extraction wells and the GAC treatment system to intercept and treat groundwater contaminated by years of pollution at the facility. The groundwater will be pumped and treated to ultimately remove an estimated 99.9% of PFAS compounds before being released into the river. Currently the contaminated groundwater flows untreated directly into the Cape Fear River. This project is designed to reduce the largest ongoing source of PFAS contaminating the river and reaching downstream water intakes and must be operational by March 15, 2023. In addition, DEQ issued an approval letter for the design of the barrier wall. The approval includes conditions for additional monitoring wells, sampling of extraction wells, and management of contaminated groundwater during barrier wall construction. DEQ is also finalizing the 401 Water Quality Certification to minimize and address impacts during the construction of the barrier wall in conjunction with the 404 Permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The NPDES permit, hearing officer’s report and approval letter are available on the NCDEQ website at bit.ly/ 3Sdasmd.
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  • Homeowners Insurance

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  • Hurricane Season
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NOAA still expects above-normal Atlantic hurricane season
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather experts still expect the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season to have above-normal activity. NOAA released Thursday its annual mid-season update to the 2022 outlook issued in May by the Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service. Since the May report, which covers the six-month hurricane season that began June 1 and ends Nov. 30, forecasters have slightly decreased the likelihood of an above-normal Atlantic hurricane season from 65% to a 60% chance. Meanwhile, the likelihood of near-normal activity has risen to 30% and the chances remain at 10% for a below-normal season. NOAA’s update to the 2022 outlook calls for 14-20 named storms, which have winds of 39 mph or greater. Six to 10 of those named storms could become hurricanes with winds of 74 mph or greater. Of those, three to five could become major hurricanes with winds of 111 mph or greater. NOAA provides these ranges with a 70% confidence. “We’re just getting into the peak months of August through October for hurricane development, and we anticipate that more storms are on the way,” said NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad, in a statement. Erik Heden, warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service forecast office for Morehead City, told Coastal Review Monday that the peak of hurricane season is not until around Sept. 10. “Typically, the season really doesn’t get going until later in August through October. It’s too early to let our guard down, we aren’t even close to the typical peak yet,” he said. “Lastly, it only takes one storm to make a difference in your lives. Take this quiet time in the season to finish your hurricane kit and plan.” He recommended visiting www.weather.gov/MHX/hurricaneprep for help with a hurricane kit and plan. Heden said his office is offering more hurricane talks ahead, including one at 9 a.m. Wednesday in Emerald Isle board meeting room, 7500 Emerald Drive, and 6 p.m. Aug. 16 in North Topsail Beach Town Hall, 2008 Loggerhead Court. Sign up to virtually attend the North Topsail Beach talk. Two talks are planned for later this month on the Outer Banks, as well.
“Communities and families should prepare now for the remainder of what is still expected to be an active hurricane season,” said Ken Graham, director of the National Weather Service. “Ensure that you are ready to take action if a hurricane threatens your area by developing an evacuation plan and gathering hurricane supplies now, before a storm is bearing down on your community.”So far, the season has seen three named storms and no hurricanes in the Atlantic Basin. An average hurricane season produces 14 named storms, of which seven become hurricanes, including three major hurricanes. The outlook is for overall seasonal activity and is not a landfall forecast. Landfalls are largely governed by short-term weather patterns that are currently only predictable within about one week of a storm potentially reaching a coastline, according to NOAA. “I urge everyone to remain vigilant as we enter the peak months of hurricane season,” Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo said in a statement. “The experts at NOAA will continue to provide the science, data and services needed to help communities become hurricane resilient and climate-ready for the remainder of hurricane season and beyond.” There are several atmospheric and oceanic conditions that still favor an active hurricane season. This includes La Niña conditions, which are favored to remain in place for the rest of 2022 and could allow the ongoing high-activity era conditions to dominate, or slightly enhance hurricane activity. In addition to a continued La Niña, weaker tropical Atlantic trade winds, an active west African Monsoon and likely above-normal Atlantic sea-surface temperatures set the stage for an active hurricane season and are reflective of the ongoing high-activity era for Atlantic hurricanes. NOAA’s hurricane science and forecasting information is available at Hurricane Season Media Resource Guide and the National Hurricane Center provides the latest on tropical storm and hurricane activity in the Atlantic. “Although it has been a relatively slow start to hurricane season, with no major storms developing in the Atlantic, this is not unusual  and we therefore cannot afford to let our guard down,” said FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell. She recommends being proactive by downloading the FEMA app and visiting Ready.gov or Listo.gov for preparedness tips. “And most importantly, make sure you understand your local risk and follow directions from your state and local officials.”
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Inlet Hazard Areas
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Lockwood Folly Inlet
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Seismic Testing / Offshore Drilling

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Offshore Wind Farms

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Things I Think I Think –

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

Restaurant Review:
Dinner Club visits a new restaurant once a month. Ratings reflect the reviewer’s reaction to food, ambience and service, with price taken into consideration.
//// August 2022
Name:            Catch
Cuisine:         Seafood
Location:      6623 Market St., Wilmington NC
Contact:        910.799.3847 / https://catchwilmington.com/
Food:              Average / Very Good / Excellent / Exceptional
Service:         Efficient / Proficient / Professional / Expert
Ambience:    Drab / Plain / Distinct / Elegant
Cost:               Inexpensive <=17 / Moderate <=22 / Expensive <=27 / Exorbitant <=40
Rating:          Three Stars
Located in a nondescript strip mall on the main drag away from downtown Catch prepares modern seafood cuisine and is an award-winning eatery. Celebrity chef and owner Keith Rhodes opened Catch Restaurant in 2006. He has always favored wild caught or sustainably raised seafood and continually supports local fisheries and organic farmers. They have a very limited menu, that only offers
about a dozen entrée choices following the trend of menu simplification. At Catch it’s all about the food, which is amazing!  If you dine out just for the food, not for anything else, Catch is one of Wilmington’s top restaurants. Despite the food being outstanding it was still over-priced. The prices are those of an upscale restaurant and they just aren’t one. Therefore, it’s hard to justify the expense. They still are on my short list of favorite restaurants.



Dining Guide – Guests

Dining Guide – Local

Restaurant Reviews – North

Restaurant Reviews – South


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

CITY ON FIRE by Don Winslow
First installment of a planned trilogy about the conflict between two rival crime families in 1986 Providence, Rhode Island. The Murphy and Moretti families have been at odds for years, the two families have managed to coexist and maintain a cooperative business arrangement in the city in relative harmony for decades. The Irish control the docks, while the Italians run the drugs and hijack the trucks. A tenuous peace exists between rival gangs. Everything was copacetic until an incident ignites a full-scale mob war that will see them kill each other, destroy an alliance, and set a city on fire.


  • .That’s it for this newsletter

    See you next month


    Lou’s Views . HBPOIN

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

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

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08 – Town Meeting

Lou’s Views

“Unofficial” Minutes & Comments


BOC’s Public Hearing / Regular Meeting 08/16/22

Board of Commissioners’ Agenda Packet click here

Audio Recording » click here


Public Hearing

NC Public Beach and Coastal Waterfront Access Grant Application

Previously reported – July 2022
Discussion and Possible Setting of Public Hearing for NC Public Beach and Coastal Waterfront Access Grant Application – Assistant Town Manager Ferguson

Agenda Packet – pages 23 – 25

Based on the BOC’s direction to pursue grant opportunities to assist with the development of the pier properties, the staff submitted a pre-application to the Division of Coastal Management for the development of the 50-foot lot for beach access to include a Hatteras ramp and walkway for a total project cost of $63,535.00. The agency approved the pre-application, and the town has been asked to complete a final application that will come before the BOC in August. As part of the application, a public meeting or hearing is required, and the staff determined that a public hearing would demonstrate the town taking the most formal approach to submission requirements. If awarded the grant, the BOC would still have to choose to accept or decline funds.

Suggested Motion: Set the public hearing for 5:00 p.m. on August  16th  prior  to  the start of the  regular  board meeting and ask the town clerk to advertise accordingly .

For more information » click here

Our preliminary request for funding of the Pier Access Improvements Public Beach Access by the Public Beach and Coastal Waterfront Access Grant Program has been reviewed by the Division of Coastal Management (DCM) and we are invited to submit a final application for further consideration in the 2022-23 grant cycle. As part of the application a Public Hearing is required, they scheduled it prior to the next BOC’s meeting.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously

Update –
As part of the application, a public hearing is required, and the staff determined that a public hearing would demonstrate the town taking the most formal approach to submission requirements.


Regular Meeting


1.   Police Report – Chief Jeremy Dixon

Agenda Packet – pages 15 – 22

Police Patch
Jeremy reviewed the actions that were taken by them last month Typical summertime fun at the beach
Home stretch, only twenty (20) days left until Labor Day (09/05/22)

 

The police department currently has only eight (8) officers of the ten (10) they are budgeted to have. Otto handling the majority of parking issues.

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. 

Originally reported that they will implement the no left turn coming off the bridge on Saturdays from 9am to 3pm. Have not had the need to close the left turn lane on the bridge, traffic never backed up there. Watching the situation and if the need arises they will implement no left turn coming off the bridge again.

Reminded everyone its Hurricane Season be prepared, have a plan!
We are going into the more active hurricane period which is from August to October

Defensive Driving
Be 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.


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

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.


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

Public Safety Announcement
The Police Department would like to remind everyone that it is important to protect your personal property. Remove all items of value from your vehicle when you are not driving it. Always lock your vehicle doors when you are not in it. Leaving items on display, whether on the dashboard or sitting on a passenger seat, is an invitation to opportunist individuals. Make sure to follow these important tips!


A reminder of the Town’s beach strand ordinances:
…..1)
Chapter 90 / Animals / § 90.20 / Responsibilities of owners
…….a)
pets are not allowed on the beach strand except between 5p.m. and 9a.m. daily
…….b)
dog’s must be on a leash at all times
…….c)
owner’s need to clean up after their animals
…..2)
Chapter 94 / Beach regulations / § 94.05 / Digging of holes on beach strand
…….a)
digging holes greater than 12 inches deep without responsible person there
…….b)
holes shall be filled in prior to leaving
…..3)
Chapter 94 / Beach regulations / § 94.06 / Placing obstructions on the beach strand
…….a)
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
Golf carts are treated the same as other automotive vehicles. Town ordinances state no parking anytime on OBW. Therefore golf carts are illegally parked when left by any beach access points.


Parking
§72.02 PARKING REGULATED ON PUBLIC STREETS AND RIGHTS-OF-WAY.
(1) All vehicles must be as far off the public street rights-of-way as possible; and
(2) No vehicle may be left parked on any portion of any roadway; and
(3) No vehicle may be parked on portion of the sidewalk. … 


Previously reported – July 2022
Discussion and Possible Action on Golf Cart Violation Reporting Tasker – Mayor Pro Tem Smith and Commissioner Kwiatkowski

Agenda Packet – page 30

Request for Golf Cart Infraction Details

Issue and Action Requested:

Golf cart parking and moving vehicle violations have become highly visible with the increasing number of golf carts being used by renters and property owners. In order to judge whether the Town’s increased communication and police department efforts are improving golf cart “safety” and compliance, the Board needs to see golf cart infraction details.

Background and Potential Implications:
Golf cart safety has become a major concern of many of our residents-we see frequent cases of underage drivers, unsafe driving, seat belts not used, babies in laps, and illegal parking. One of the justifications for increasing the THB police force last year was to be able to better enforce traffic and parking rules, with golf carts acknowledged as a particular problem. It is hoped that police warnings and, when necessary, ticketing early in the rental week leads to reduced infractions as the week progresses.

Without detailed golf cart infraction data neither the BOC or Town Staff can judge whether ongoing Town communication efforts and Police Department focused activities are reducing unsafe practices and illegal parking of golf carts. The BOC needs a report specific to golf carts that provides for all warnings and tickets. Below is a suggested list of information that would help Town Staff, the Board and our residents measure improvements and determine whether changes in education and/or enforcement activities would be appropriate.

Violation description:

    • Parking
    • Underage driver
    • Seat belt infraction
    • Child seat infraction Unsafe driving
    • Unlicensed vehicle

Warning or ticket
Date and day of week
Time of day
Location on island

A summary of findings would be presented at our monthly BOCM’s , suggested to start in August.

This time I would like to request we task the Town Manager with making sure we get this information every month with the Police report until the BOC can determine if we need to make changes or add an ordinance to protect our citizens and visitors.

Request for Golf Cart Infraction Details


All rules that apply to motor vehicles apply to golf carts. Despite assurances that golf carts are being addressed as a priority in order to keep people safe, we have not seen any noticeable change in behavior, there still are a significant number of golf carts in violation of vehicle regulations. This is the same tasker from June of 2021. This is a safety issue and more needs to be done. They questioned whether enforcement is the issue. What we are doing is not working, they are trying to be proactive before anything bad happens. They just want to utilize measurement metrics to see if what we are doing is getting the desired effect. Jeremy objected to the Board giving them direction as to what laws to enforce, they enforce all laws on all vehicles and they can’t legally target specific vehicles. It was a convoluted response; all the Board is asking is for them to report what is being done to address the issue. The Board asked him to figure out how to make this happen and Jeremy reluctantly agreed that he will figure out how to capture the data.

Holden Beach commissioners request more information on golf cart violations Golf carts have been the talk of the county this summer and, as more and more appear on the roadways and more incidents happen as a result, one local town wants to investigate if golf cart drivers are following traffic laws, as well as how those laws are being enforced. During the Holden Beach Board of Commissioners monthly meeting on Tuesday, July 19, an agenda item was listed, presented by Mayor Pro Tem Rick Smith and Commissioner Pat Kwiatkowski, requesting monthly low-speed vehicle (i.e., golf cart) infraction reports to be given to the Board of Commissioners. “In order to judge whether the Town’s increased communication and police department efforts are improving golf cart ‘safety’ and compliance, the Board needs to see golf cart infraction details,” the agenda item reads. Smith said the board is requesting monthly reports from the Holden Beach Police Department containing information on the number of golf cart-related incidents in town. He noted these reports should include information about parking, seatbelt and child car seat violations and citations issued to unlicensed and underage drivers. The request stems from the increase in golf carts on the roads, which has been accompanied by many folks not abiding by traffic laws – which are largely the same for golf carts as they are for cars. “It’s gotten to the point where I’m getting calls from residents. We want to know, as the board, if we need to do anything other than what’s being done,” Smith said. “I think law enforcement getting a count as to what is actually happening out there, so we can actually give some kind of idea, is how we need to move forward.” Holden Beach Police Chief Jeremy Dixon, though in agreement that golf carts are creating safety issues in town, wasn’t keen on the idea and explained why. Dixon said he feels it is “bad practice” for the police department to allow the Board of Commissioners to determine what their enforcement actions should be. He also said he feels this could come across as the town targeting golf carts, which could be seen as discriminatory. Dixon noted a lawsuit in Delaware, Espinosa v. Town of Fenwick Island, that stems from that town adopting an ordinance that banned most low-speed vehicles from driving on town streets. In early July, a Delaware court ruled that the ordinance, temporarily, is unenforceable. “A golf cart or a low-speed vehicle is still a motor vehicle, and we need to treat them the same as every other motor vehicle,” Dixon said. Kwiatkowski said the board doesn’t want the police department to target golf carts, but rather to share organically gathered golf cart citation information, specifically regarding violations related to seatbelts and children riding in laps, to “see whether or not the efforts that are being made to communicate to get messages out there are actually helping.” Dixon responded, noting he understands the request but is unsure how accurate the information would even be considering officers often stop golf carts without issuing citations. Smith asked Dixon to find a way to get accurate information. “What we’re doing and what we’re seeing is not working,” he said. “I don’t want to wait until someone is killed for us to do a knee jerk reaction on doing something then,” Smith continued. “Let’s put something in place on the front end to try to curb this so we don’t have to do something drastic on the back end.” Lieutenant Frank Dilworth told the board that the way crash and citations data is collected is set by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and their classifications do not include golf carts or low-speed vehicles. Smith and Kwiatkowski both agreed the data on golf cart infractions didn’t need to be official data, but just asked the department to keep track of citations, warnings and conversations with golf cart drivers and passengers for the board to see if their safety efforts are working. “It’s what can you do outside of the existing system that’s in place to tease out golf cart information that helps us see that, yeah, it does help, or we need to focus on communication, education, something,” Kwiatkowski said. “Because I have a feeling that we still need to come up with more ways to get the word out. From week to week, it varies tremendously.” Smith said the request isn’t about cracking down on golf carts, it’s about ensuring the safety of those on the golf carts. “I don’t want to ruin anybody’s vacation, stop them and just give them a warning, give them a good talking to, especially the ones that have got the babies in their arms.” In the end, Dixon agreed to provide the board with data on golf cart citations, incidents and warnings but he was unsure if it would help address the safety issues.
Read more » click here


Five things to know about driving golf carts at Brunswick’s beaches
Earlier this summer, Southport Police Chief Todd Coring was riding through town when he saw something that stopped him in his tracks. A golf cart, driven by an underage driver, was cruising the streets, pulling a teen riding a skateboard and holding a dog on a leash. Coring held his breath as they approached the intersection. The golf cart stopped; the skateboard didn’t. Thankfully, all were safe and unharmed. “The boy held onto the dog, jumped off the skateboard, and never missed a beat,” Coring recalled. “The skateboard rolled out into the road, but thankfully, the cars stopped, and everything was all right.” While Coring took a minute to joke with the boy about his amazing balance and coordination, he also educated the kids about the city’s low-speed vehicle ordinance, which mandates golf cart drivers must be at least 18 years old. Coring’s not alone. Across Brunswick County, beach towns are seeing an increase in the number of violations. Sunset Beach Police Chief Kenneth Klamar noted in addition to tourists who may be unfamiliar with the rules, one of the issues driving the increase in violations is the volume of golf carts on the roads during the summer months. While it may be a fun, easy way to get around town, leaders in several Brunswick municipalities say they are concerned for the safety of the riders and those around them, and they are considering how to address the issue. Here are five things to know if you plan to operate a golf cart in Brunswick’s beach towns.
Understand local ordinances
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to golf cart ordinances, and towns don’t have to allow them. On Bald Head Island, golf carts are the primary mode of transportation and are permitted, but it’s a bit different on Sunset Beach. Klamar explained that while they don’t allow traditional golf carts, they do allow Low Speed Vehicles (LSVs) as outlined in North Carolina General Statute 20-121.1. Like Bald Head Island, the City of Southport also permits golf carts, but they must be registered with the city annually. Most municipalities have their ordinances listed on their website. Check it before you hit the road to be sure you are in compliance.
‘Golf cart’ and ‘low-speed vehicle’ terms not interchangeable
North Carolina General Statute defines a golf cart as “a vehicle designed and manufactured for operation on a golf course for sporting or recreational purposes and that is not capable of exceeding speeds of 20 miles per hour.” A low-speed vehicle, or LSV as it if often called, is covered in the North Carolina General Statutes, which defines it as “a four-wheeled electric vehicle whose top speed is greater than 20 miles per hour but less than 25 miles per hour.” The statute permits low-speed vehicles on “only on streets and highways where the posted speed limit is 35 miles per hour or less.” Low-speed vehicles must be registered with the state and insured.
Drivers must be of age
Daisy Ivey, town administrator for Ocean Isle Beach, said the issues they primarily see are underage drivers and unsecured children. These issues were reported across the board by officials in Brunswick’s beach towns, and they say it’s a safety concern. Even though it’s not a car, a golf cart still poses significant injury risk. “You don’t have as much protection around you as you do in a vehicle,” Coring said. While some towns allow 16-year-olds to operate golf carts, others, like Southport, require drivers to be at least 18 years old.
Traffic laws still apply
Driving a golf cart means obeying traffic laws by stopping at stop signs and stoplights. Golf cart drivers should also know even though golf carts are smaller than most traditional vehicles, they still should be parked in traditional parking spaces. Officials also note that when it comes to drinking and driving, golf carts are treated the same as motor vehicles, and intoxicated drivers will be charged with Driving While Impaired (DWI).
Towns are cracking down on violators
After seeing an increase in violations over the summer, towns are working to address the issue through education and increased enforcement. On July 21, the Oak Island Police Department reported 24 LSV stops in a single hour. The most common citations were for no child restraints, unregistered vehicles which did not possess the necessary equipment, and overloaded capacity. Michael Emory, public information officer for Oak Island, said that in addition to increased enforcement, the town is attempting to educate the public on the rules.  “We have already begun this effort with an increased social media push, as well as redesigning and reprinting our ‘Respect the Road’ information cards, which are being provided by the Police Department, available at Town Hall, and available to all LSV rental companies,” Emory said in an email. Coring also reported that Southport is increasing enforcement efforts and hosting golf cart registration events to ensure that golf carts have the necessary safety equipment and are registered with the city. He said the goal is to ensure everyone’s safety. “We welcome golf carts,” he said. “We just want people to be safe on the roads.”
Read more » click here

Update –
There have been a lot of incidents, they would like to remind everyone that it is important to protect your personal property. For the month of July, the Police Department issued eight (8) citations/warnings for LSVs and Golf Carts.  The paid parking vendor, Otto Connect, issued 492 citations.


2.   Inspections Department Report – Inspections Director Evans

Agenda Packet – pages 23 – 24

Previously reported – June 2022
Timbo prepared a slide presentation. They are dedicated to keeping families and visitors safe, by enforcing the applied rules and regulations applicable to development and construction within the town corporate limits. Building on the island has picked up exponentially and he made it clear that they have been very, very, busy.

The department has the inability to cut corners, they can’t reduce process and carry out their core responsibilities.

Apparently Timbo took umbrage to the criticism of the department at the last meeting and prepared this report in response. We get it, there is a lot going on.

Previously reported – July 2022
Bottomline, a lot of building is going on. They have a new inspector in training, so we now have two people out there. The department is down an  administrative person which will affect turnaround time. They are trying to do the best they can. Don’t really see the need for a monthly update, I’d think his time is better spent elsewhere.

Update –
Timbo reported what the department is busy doing. Finally, activity has started to be trending down. The department is now fully staffed, they have two (2) trainees.


3.   Discussion and Possible Action on Filling Gerald Brown’s Vacant Seat – Mayor Holden

Agenda Packet – background information was not provided

Filling a Vacancy on the Town Council

§30.11 TERMS OF OFFICE; FILLING OF VACANCIES.

     (A)     Commissioner shall be two years, both of which begin on the day of first regular meeting in December following their election, except in case either is elected to serve an unexpired term, in which case the newly elected officers shall qualify and commence serving immediately upon the declaration of the result of the election by the Town BOC.

     (B)     Vacancies shall be filled as provided for in North Carolina General Statute § 160A-63

§160A63. Vacancies.

A vacancy that occurs in an elective office of a city shall be filled by appointment of the city council. If the term of the office expires immediately following the next regular city election, or if the next regular city election will be held within 90 days after the vacancy occurs, the person appointed to fill the vacancy shall serve the remainder of the unexpired term. Otherwise, a successor shall be elected at the next regularly scheduled city election that is held more than 90 days after the vacancy occurs, and the person appointed to fill the vacancy shall serve only until the elected successor takes office. The elected successor shall then serve the remainder of the unexpired term.

Holden Beach Commissioner Gerald Brown passes away
Holden Beach Town Commissioner Gerald Brown has passed away after battling health issues for the past several weeks, according to Mayor J. Alan Holden. Holden said Brown passed away in the hospital on Sunday. Brown was elected as Town Commissioner in November 2019. He served as Mayor Pro Tem after taking office. Holden said he hoped to have additional details on services for Brown in the next couple of days. According to the mayor, the Board of Commissioners will appoint a replacement to serve the remainder of Brown’s current term, which ends in December 2023. Holden said he did not know when that selection would take place.

Update –
Although the statute  states that the position is to be filled by appointment by the Board, they decided that instead they would consider anybody in the Town that wants to be a Commissioner. The Board agreed to request that anybody interested should submit their qualifications in the next thirty (30) days. Applications will be accepted, and candidates will be interviewed by the Board at a Special Meeting. They will be selected, but not seated until the October meeting.

A decision was made – Approved (3-1)
Commissioner Smith opposed the motion

Board of Commissioners’ Vacancy
There is currently a vacancy on the Holden Beach Board of Commissioners.

If you are a resident and interested in filling the vacancy, please send your name, qualifications/background and a description of why you would like to serve to Heather Finnell at heather@hbtownhall.com or to 110 Rothschild Street, Holden Beach, NC 28462 by September 20th.

The Board of Commissioners will review the submissions and schedule a special meeting to interview the interested candidates. If there are any dates that you are unavailable (through mid-October) please indicate that on your submission. 


4.   Discussion and Possible Action on Ordinance 22-19, An Ordinance Amending Town of Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Chapter 71: Traffic Schedules – Town Clerk Finnell

Agenda Packet – pages 25 – 26

Ordinance 22-19, An Ordinance Amending the Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Chapter 71: Traffic Schedules was prepared based on the Board’s direction at the July  meeting. If  approved,  the speed limit on Ocean Boulevard will be 35 MPH year-round.

The suggested motion is to approve Ordinance 22-19.

Previously reported – July 2022
Discussion and Possible Action on Speed Limit on Ocean Boulevard – Commissioner Dyer
Agenda Packet – pages 31 – 32
The main concern I have is for safety and to try and get crosswalks distinguished after paving. With the increase in permanent residents and addition of two bike lanes, I feel like a speed limit of 45 MPH is not safe. With the higher speed and more distracted drivers, I am concerned that there will be an incident. For example, a child will dart out and drivers can’t react in time at that speed. The increased population is year-round, not just in the summer.

Once again they are proposing lowering the speed limit on Ocean Boulevard to 35 miles per hour year-round. In 2019 the HBPOA survey had a very strong response of almost 80% for keeping the 45mph speed limit in the off season. A little over a year ago the NCDOT said that they support the current posted speed limits, and we can leave the ordinance as it is written. Police Chief acknowledged that we have not had any issues with the higher speed limit. Yet here we are.  Their default position is that Public Safety is what’s most important and the driving force for the change. They are not actually changing ordinance at this meeting; they will have to bring back ordinance to implement the change.

A decision was made – Approved (3-1)
Commissioner Smith opposed the motion


Commissioners vote to reduce speed limit on Ocean Boulevard
The Holden Beach Board of Commissioners voted during its Tuesday, July 19 meeting to permanently lower the speed limit on Ocean Boulevard from Greensboro Street to the west end of the road. The speed limit on the road will now be 35 miles per hour all year. With the addition of bike lanes coming to Ocean Boulevard early next year and the year-round increase in people and traffic on the island, the commissioners agreed the reduction was the right move. The board also hopes the reduction will make it possible for the NCDOT to install crosswalks on that portion of the street (crosswalks are only installed in areas with a speed limit of 35 mph or below). Previously, the speed limit on Ocean Boulevard changed in the off season. From April 1 to September 30, the speed limit has been 35 mph, while from October 1 to March 31, the speed limit has been 45 mph. A December 2020 engineering report found that a year-round decrease in the speed limit was not necessary, but Commissioner Page Dyer, who brought the issue to the board, had concerns that the report does not factor in the changes and growth in the town over the past two and half years. “My concern is the [number] of residents, full-time, has increased since that engineering report,” Dyer said. “I’m also concerned that it was done in December of 2020 — which is still considered Covid time. We’ve had an increase in houses being built, we’ve had an increase in the number of residents that live on [the island] full time.” Dyer said the town should not wait until someone is injured or killed to act. Commissioner Pat Kwiatkowski echoed Dyer’s sentiment, noting that the reduction should be made prior to the installation of bike lanes. “When the bike lanes go in, we need to go 35 [miles per hour]” Kwiatkowski said. “So, the bike lanes are going to go in next year in the first part of the year, we may as well just start all year round 35 and let people get used to it.” Kwiatkowski also requested that Town Manager David Hewett reach out to NCDOT to officially request the addition of crosswalks in the area. Mayor Pro Tem Rick Smith voiced his disagreement with permanently reducing the speed limit, noting that there have been no issues in the past due to the 45-mph offseason speed limit and that reducing the limit by 10 mph won’t make a difference regarding safety. “Anybody that comes out the side of the trashcans [onto Ocean Boulevard], whether it’s 35 or 45 miles an hour, it’s not going to be pretty,” Smith said. Smith also reference a 2019 poll conducted by the town in which 90% of residents were opposed to permanently changing the speed limit in that area. Commissioner Brian Murdock noted that he didn’t want to change the speed limit but, once the bike lanes are added, it will end up being lowered anyway. He added reducing the speed limit in the area is the best thing for public safety. “If we as a community lose track of public safety in favor getting somewhere in another minute, then we’re going to have bigger fish to fry at some point,” Murdock said. Murdock also echoed Dyer’s remarks on the 2020 engineering report being outdated. “There’s been a ton of development on this island since that survey was taken and there’s a lot of people here a lot of the time.” Dyer, Kwiatkowski and Murdock voted in favor of keeping the speed limit at 35-mph year-round, while Smith voted against.
Read more » click here

Update –
The motion proposes permanently lowering the speed limit on Ocean Boulevard to thirty-five (35) miles per hour year-round. They decided to implement the change; therefore, the speed limit will not increase to forty-five (45) miles per hour on October 1st  as usual.

A decision was made – Approved (3-1)
Commissioner Smith opposed the motion


5.   Discussion and Possible Action on Statements of Qualifications Received for Block Q and the Pier Properties – Town Manager Hewett

Agenda Packet – pages 27, plus separate packet

Qualifications McGill Block Q

Qualifications McGill Pier

Qualifications Stature Pier

As directed, staff readvertised the Requests for Qualifications (RFQ) for the Block Q and HB Pier properties. In addition to placing an ad in the Star News, advertising on our website and sending the RFQ to the original directly solicited recipients, the RFQs were sent to additional firms as requested by the Board. These firms include Withers & Ravenel, WK Dickson and Co., McPherson Engineering Design, Moffatt and Nichol, Gary Gurganus, Applied Technology and Management and Stature Engineering.

In response to the RFQs, we received Statements of Qualifications from two firms. McGill Associates provided statements for both the HB Pier and Block Q properties. Stature Engineering provided a statement in response to the RFQ for the HB Pier property.

The Statements of Qualifications are included for the Board’s review and discussion on how to proceed.

Previously reported – July 2022
Discussion and Possible Action on Statements of Qualifications Received for Block Q and the Pier Properties – Town Manager Hewett

Agenda Packet – page 49, plus separate packets

Separate RFQs to provide comprehensive Engineering and Architectural services for the development/redevelopment of the Block Q and the Pier properties were advertised in June. McGill and Associates was the only firm that submitted responses. (Atch 1 & 2). Should the Board desire to utilize McGill for the Pier and/or Block Q project(s) it would need to direct staff to have contract proposal(s) prepared for consideration/approval.

Pier and Block Q

The  Request for Quotation (RfQ) for engineering for the Pier and Block Q is out and due back by June 24th  

Food trucks are operating at the pier but are struggling due to lack of customers  

Some reservations have been made for the camper spaces the Town owns 

The CAMA grant reimbursement 9$180k) for the for the access parcel is expected sometime next month  

RFQ Response – Pier

RFQ Response – Block Q

The Board was not comfortable with having only one response. They gave direction to the Town Manager to reach out and attempt to get more responses.

Update –
A number of firms were contacted. But after re-advertising, only one (1) firm submitted for Block Q and two (2) for the Pier. The Board was still not comfortable with this few responses. The BOC’s would like to have at least three (3) responses for each property. They gave direction to the Town Manager to reach out and attempt to get more responses.

 No decision was made – No action taken


6.   Discussion and Possible Action on Pier Financial Reporting – Town Manager Hewett

Agenda Packet – pages 28

At the July meeting Board tasked development of an expanded line-item detail for the two pier properties to enable a more refined view of actions forthcoming with pending improvements and new operations. The current BPART budget contains appropriations described as follows:

      1. 441 OBW
      2. Debt Service 441 OBW

After consulting with Commissioner Kwiatkowski, the following new account descriptions  are proposed to augment the existing chart of account descriptions for the purpose of housing associated expenses for the properties.

      1. Pier House Renovations & Repair
      2. Pier Renovations & Repair
      3. 441Professional Services
      4. 441 Utilities & Insurance
      5. 441West Beach Access

If approved the new account descriptions will be added to the existing chart of accounts and incorporated into the budget ordinance when the Board authorizes appropriations to individual expense accounts.

Update –
David suggested five (5) additional account descriptions be added to the budget report to allow for better expense tracking. Motion was made to add the five (5) lines which will be added to the existing chart of accounts and incorporated into the budget ordinance.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


7.   Discussion and Possible Action on NC Public Beach and Coastal Waterfront Access Grant Application – Assistant Town Manager Ferguson

Agenda Packet – pages 29 – 43 which is too large to include here

Based on the BOC’s direction to pursue grant opportunities to assist with the development of the pier properties, the staff submitted a pre-application to the Division of Coastal Management for the development of the 50-foot lot for beach access to include a Hatteras ramp and walkway for a total project cost of $63,535.00. The new estimate based on increased costs for construction is $66,985.00. The agency approved the pre-application, and the town has been asked to complete a final application. As part of the application, a public meeting or hearing is required, and the staff determined that a public hearing would demonstrate the town taking the most formal approach to submission requirements. If awarded the grant, the BOC would still have to choose to accept or decline funds. The application is in the packet for the public hearing and for possible action by the board on the agenda.

Suggested Motion: Approval of the 2022-2023 North Carolina Public Beach and Coastal Waterfront Access Program Final Application with instructions for the town manager to execute paperwork for final submission.

Update –
This application is for the development of the fifty-foot lot west of the pier building for beach access to include a Hatteras ramp and walkway. Commissioner Kwiatkowski recommended that all the parking on the lot to be handicapped parking.  Board agreed to move forward with the application.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


  • 8.  Town Manager’s Report

FEMA storm damage repair project
David reported that as of last week the Town has received all but $45K in cost from the $23M FEMA beach renourishment project not counting interest cost. Reimbursement on the interest cost on the FEMA loan is still undetermined but we believe it is an allowable expense.

Previously reported – July 2022
Rolled over the special obligation bond of $4.28M. We will incur interest payment charges of $617K, eligibility for reimbursement has not been determined yet

 Audit
The audit is on track with no issues so far.

Personnel
We have filled two (2) of the open positions, the Inspections Department Permit Specialist and the Public Works Technician. 

Previously reported – July 2022
Manning, recruitment, and retention continue to be challenging for the Town staff. Of the twenty-nine (29) full time positions only twenty-four (24) of those are filled. Currently have five (5) vacant positions, staffing levels only at 82%.


9.   Mayor’s Comments

We are going into the more active hurricane period which is from August to October – be prepared, have a plan!
Mayor Holden met with the Town staff and reviewed responsibilities, and they are on top of things. He plans to meet with the rental property management companies to review the Town plans during an emergency.

Alan said that he is getting a lot of complaints about the causeway.  He reminded everyone that the causeway is not part of the Town of Holden Beach, but it is a part of Brunswick County. There is an ongoing effort to make improvements and they are discussing a number of opportunities to beautify the causeway.


Corrections & Amplifications

Peddling
Previously reported – July 2022
Discussion and Possible Action on Ordinance 22-17, An Ordinance Amending Town of Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Chapter 112: Peddlers – Inspections Director Evans
a. Fee Schedule Revision

Agenda Packet – pages 38 – 42

Ordinance 22-17 was prepared for consideration and possible approval by the Board of Commissioners, Staff prepared the draft ordinance as directed by the Board at its last scheduled meeting. The dates of operation and times were excluded and can be entered if the Board so approves the amended section.

Ordinance is so designed to allow only those merchants with established businesses to conduct such business remotely on the strand with specific guidelines, locations and dates by permit only.

 

Proposal is for allowing peddling on the beach strand with specific guidelines as follows:

      • Only Vendors With a Brick-and-Mortar Presence on the Island
      • Permits Required
      • Associated Fees ($250 permit / $1,000 per pushcart)
      • Food & Beverages Only
      • Locations Permitted
      • Restricted Dates
      • Restricted Times
      • Pushcart Design
      • Insurance Requirements

Unable to benchmark off of other locations that have an ordinance that addresses peddling. Timbo felt it was easier to modify our existing ordinance. Vendor will need to meet the conditions stated in the ordinance to get an annual permit. They will be permitted to operate Easter through October from 10:00am to 6:00pm. That gives them the option to be out there when it makes business sense to be on the beach strand. Our Town attorney will review the submitted ordinance for consideration. Plan is for final version of ordinance will be submitted for approval by the Board at the next meeting.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


Holden Beach Commissioners vote to allow vendor carts on strand
Holden Beach Commissioners during the monthly meeting on Tuesday, July 19, voted to allow local businesses to venture out into the vending world on the Holden Beach strand. The peddler ordinance will allow local businesses inside the town to purchase an off-premise permit which will allow them to sell products from a pushcart on the strand. “Each year, we will offer off premise sales to established businesses by permit only,” Holden Beach Planning and Inspections Director Tim Evans said. “And then with that permit, you will be able to get permits for five push carts. So, you’ll get an off-premise permit and then you’ll have the capability of buying permits for push carts.” An off-premise permit for the business will be $250 alone. Once approved for a permit, the business will be able to pay a fee of $1,000 to push a cart. Each business must supply its own cart and pay the $1,000 fee for each cart they would like to use. Each permit holder is allowed up to five carts. “For those that are listening in the room and elsewhere, please make sure there is no misunderstanding that this is consideration to be given to anyone that qualifies,” Mayor Alan Holden said. Evans explained that in order to obtain an off-premise permit, the local business must go through an approval process that includes multiple conditions. Two of these conditions include that a business must be legal and have a brick-and-mortar store within town limits. The ordinance affirms that if the permit is denied or revoked, the business must file the appeal with Town Clerk Heather Finnell within 10 days of the denial. “Only those merchants with established businesses [can] conduct such businesses remotely on the strand with specific guidelines, locations and dates by permit only,” Evans said. At other Brunswick County beaches such as Ocean Isle Beach and Oak Island, the town allows off premise sales using pushcarts. Those beaches have much cheaper costs to do so, Commissioner Pat Kwiatkowski noted. Drew Sellers, co-owner of Sunset Slush Classic Italian Ice, told commissioners that Easter is typically when Sunset Slush starts pushing carts on the beach. He added that being allowed to push the carts through October would be ideal. The local business is often seen on other Brunswick County beaches between 11:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., depending on weather and other conditions. “I don’t see a problem linking it to when we have paid parking and letting it happen from April to the end of October,” Kwiatkowski said. The recently approved paid parking ordinance states: “Parking permits will be required from April 1 through Oct. 31 between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. each day.” Kwiatkowski noted that aligning the two ordinances gives vendors ample time to do their business when it’s profitable for them. Commissioners agreed that once the times are set, no selling of merchandise will be allowed after or before the permitted hours. The timeframe includes the set up and take down of all carts. The ordinance differentiates off premise sales from peddling and sales by itinerant merchants, explicitly prohibiting the latter two. It states that, “No itinerant merchant/peddler shall conduct any business sale, or offer to conduct any business sale, from any public road, other public thoroughfare, public beach, sidewalk, parking lot, or any other public property whatsoever, unless permitted.” Peddlers and itinerant merchants are, therefore, still not allowed to sell in the town of Holden Beach or on the beach. A peddler is considered a private seller who travels from place to place with goods without a store; an itinerant merchant is defined as an individual who transports goods and displays them for sale. A peddler or itinerant merchant does not meet the specified requirements for this ordinance, so they will not be able to obtain an off-premises permit. “You cannot peddle in the Town of Holden Beach. Open vending is not allowed,” Tim Evans said. Although the ordinance has been approved, it will not go into effect until the town attorney Richard Green has read it and given his approval. Since the matter was discussed at the meeting, the specified times, dates and requirements for liability insurance must be inserted into the document that is pending Green’s approval. “If I’ve got a problem, I’ll send it back,” Richard Green said. “The only variables we’ve got [to add] are times and dates in there as far as I can tell… and liability insurance.” Green plans to have the document ready to go into effect by Aug. 1 and anticipates no issues.  If there are problems, Green will send it back to the commissioners and there will be another discussion with a final vote.
Read more » click here

Update –
Last month I reported that they are not actually changing ordinance at this meeting; they will have to bring back ordinance to implement the change. Well, that is what usually happens but not this time. What happened is the ordinance was sent to the Town attorney and pending no issues it went into effect on August 1st. What that means is that Sunset Slush has been on the beach strand this month


General Comments –



BOC’s Meeting

The Board of Commissioners’ next Regular Meeting is scheduled on the third Tuesday of the month, September 20th
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  • Hurricane Season
    .
    For more information
    » click here

    .
    Be prepared – have a plan!.

  • .
    ..


Weather Permitting: Hurricane season has been quiet so far in 2022.
Will it stay that way?
About a month ago, it seemed the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season was off and running. From the Carolinas to Central America, tropical storms were slogging ashore, with a seemingly endless freight train of low-pressure systems chugging across the Atlantic. Fast-forward to early August. No hurricanes, no storms. Not even a promising swirl for Hurricane Hunters to check out over the past month. It’s like someone pulled the tropical plug. For only the fourth time in the past 30 years, the stretch from July 4 to Aug. 4 has passed without any named storm activity. The tropics, it seems, are drier than the Baptist state convention. Were all the dire predictions of another hyperactive hurricane season just a lot of hot air? Or have weather enthusiasts just been spoiled by the nonstop tropical spin-ups we’ve seen over the past couple of years? The answer is probably a little bit of both. This 2022 season is the first in the past five years that got to August without at least one hurricane forming. And in the last 30 years, only four seasons have been storm-free from July 4 through Aug. 4: 1993, 1999, 2000 and 2009. Remember this week two years ago? The Cape Fear region was bracing for the arrival of Hurricane Isaias — the ninth named storm of the season. Another storm, Hanna, had already become the first hurricane of the season, and by the end of the year, the National Hurricane Center was deep into the Greek alphabet of storm names. Last year saw another batch of storms — but oddly there was a four-week breather during July into August as well. That rest was rudely ended when a trio of named storms — Fred, Gracie and Henri — all dropped off the African coast within a few days of each other. The 2021 season went on to feature 21 named storms. So, we’ve been conditioned over the last couple of years to expect a parade of storms, especially with conditions that are conducive to development. A continuing La Nina, with above-average sea temperatures, would bode well for storm formation. And, as the hurricane season shifts from “homegrown” systems to the long-tracking Cape Verde storms, all eyes turn to the west coast of Africa. What we’ve seen for the last couple of weeks has been surprising. An extreme layer of bone-dry, dusty Sahara Desert air has cloaked the eastern Atlantic, choking potential storms as they wade off the coast. This dust cloud is a common summer feature, but it has been particularly potent during July. In addition, strong low-level winds have helped rip potential systems apart, and sinking air west of Africa prevents the towering storm clouds we associate with tropical systems. It doesn’t matter how warm the water is if the storms can’t use it. And right now, conditions in the central Atlantic are downright hostile.
What’s next
Will things stay that way? Not likely. Already there are indications that the Sahara Dust Layer is beginning to ease. As sea temperatures continue to creep up, sinking air should become less of an issue. And the wave train off Africa shows no sign of stopping. A few past “slow start” seasons may offer a hint for this year: The 2019 season saw an equally quiet start, with the Atlantic producing only a “C” storm (Chantal) by mid-August. A week later, the gates opened, and 2019 ended up with 18 named storms. In 2010, Tropical Storm Colin didn’t arrive until the first week of August, another slow start to the season. However, by the end of the month, two Category 4 storms formed (Danielle and Earl) and the season ended up with 19 named systems. Finally, the “slow start” season of 1999 made its mark on North Carolina. By early August, only one named storm had formed. By the end of the season, five Category 4 storms had formed, and two (Dennis and Floyd) teamed up that September to produce devastating floods in eastern North Carolina. And, for those keeping track, 1999 was another La Nina year. So, while things may seem quiet in the Atlantic, we’re actually not that far off the 30-year average for hurricanes. August is the traditional first month for hurricanes to form, with early September the peak of the season. Keep an eye on conditions in the Central Atlantic starting in mid-August. I think we’ve got a long way to go. Stay tuned!
Read more » click here


NOAA still expects above-normal Atlantic hurricane season
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather experts still expect the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season to have above-normal activity. NOAA released Thursday its annual mid-season update to the 2022 outlook issued in May by the Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service. Since the May report, which covers the six-month hurricane season that began June 1 and ends Nov. 30, forecasters have slightly decreased the likelihood of an above-normal Atlantic hurricane season from 65% to a 60% chance. Meanwhile, the likelihood of near-normal activity has risen to 30% and the chances remain at 10% for a below-normal season. NOAA’s update to the 2022 outlook calls for 14-20 named storms, which have winds of 39 mph or greater. Six to 10 of those named storms could become hurricanes with winds of 74 mph or greater. Of those, three to five could become major hurricanes with winds of 111 mph or greater. NOAA provides these ranges with a 70% confidence. “We’re just getting into the peak months of August through October for hurricane development, and we anticipate that more storms are on the way,” said NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad, in a statement. Erik Heden, warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service forecast office for Morehead City, told Coastal Review Monday that the peak of hurricane season is not until around Sept. 10. “Typically, the season really doesn’t get going until later in August through October. It’s too early to let our guard down, we aren’t even close to the typical peak yet,” he said. “Lastly, it only takes one storm to make a difference in your lives. Take this quiet time in the season to finish your hurricane kit and plan.” He recommended visiting www.weather.gov/MHX/hurricaneprep for help with a hurricane kit and plan. Heden said his office is offering more hurricane talks ahead, including one at 9 a.m. Wednesday in Emerald Isle board meeting room, 7500 Emerald Drive, and 6 p.m. Aug. 16 in North Topsail Beach Town Hall, 2008 Loggerhead Court. Sign up to virtually attend the North Topsail Beach talk. Two talks are planned for later this month on the Outer Banks, as well.
“Communities and families should prepare now for the remainder of what is still expected to be an active hurricane season,” said Ken Graham, director of the National Weather Service. “Ensure that you are ready to take action if a hurricane threatens your area by developing an evacuation plan and gathering hurricane supplies now, before a storm is bearing down on your community.”So far, the season has seen three named storms and no hurricanes in the Atlantic Basin. An average hurricane season produces 14 named storms, of which seven become hurricanes, including three major hurricanes. The outlook is for overall seasonal activity and is not a landfall forecast. Landfalls are largely governed by short-term weather patterns that are currently only predictable within about one week of a storm potentially reaching a coastline, according to NOAA. I urge everyone to remain vigilant as we enter the peak months of hurricane season,” Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo said in a statement. “The experts at NOAA will continue to provide the science, data and services needed to help communities become hurricane resilient and climate-ready for the remainder of hurricane season and beyond.” There are several atmospheric and oceanic conditions that still favor an active hurricane season. This includes La Niña conditions, which are favored to remain in place for the rest of 2022 and could allow the ongoing high-activity era conditions to dominate, or slightly enhance hurricane activity. In addition to a continued La Niña, weaker tropical Atlantic trade winds, an active west African Monsoon and likely above-normal Atlantic sea-surface temperatures set the stage for an active hurricane season and are reflective of the ongoing high-activity era for Atlantic hurricanes. NOAA’s hurricane science and forecasting information is available at Hurricane Season Media Resource Guide and the National Hurricane Center provides the latest on tropical storm and hurricane activity in the Atlantic. “Although it has been a relatively slow start to hurricane season, with no major storms developing in the Atlantic, this is not unusual  and we therefore cannot afford to let our guard down,” said FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell. She recommends being proactive by downloading the FEMA app and visiting Ready.gov or Listo.gov for preparedness tips. “And most importantly, make sure you understand your local risk and follow directions from your state and local officials.”
Read more » click here


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


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Lou’s Views . HBPOIN

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

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

https://lousviews.com/

08 – News & Views

Lou’s Views
News & Views / August Edition


Calendar of Events –


King Mackerel Tournament - CR
U.S. Open King Mackerel Fishing Tournament
September 29th thru October 1st
Southport


The
U.S. Open King Mackerel Tournament has taken place since 1979 and is held annually the first week in October. The U.S. Open is one of the largest king mackerel tournaments on the East Coast and part of the SKA (Southern Kingfish Association) Tournament Trail. The tournament now attracts almost 400 boats annually.
For more information » click here



Sunset at Sunset
October 1st
Sunset Beach


Held the first Saturday in October each year, Sunset at Sunset is the Town of Sunset Beach’s Community Block Party.
 The 15th annual autumn event is scheduled to happen again this year, in front of Ingram Planetarium on Sunset Boulevard in Sunset
Beach.
For more information » click here 



Riverfest

October 7th thru 9th 
Wilmington        

 

Wilmington’s Riverfest is celebrated in October since 1979 and runs from the foot of Market Street to Cape Fear Community College over a half mile of free family entertainment.
For more information » click here


Oyster Festival Logo - CR

N.C. Oyster Festival
October 15th & 16th

Shallotte

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..
The annual North Carolina Oyster Festival has taken place since 1978
. Come celebrate everything Oyster with a variety of foods, crafts, contests, children’s activities, and musical performances at Mulberry Park in Shallotte. Signature Festival events include the Oyster Shucking Contest, Oyster Eating Contest, and Oyster Stew Cook-off.
For more information » click here


N.C. Festival by the Sea
October 29th & 30th
Holden Beach


Hosted by the Holden Beach Merchants Association this two day festival occurs on the last full weekend in October. This two day event is kicked off with a parade down the Holden Beach causeway. There is a fishing tournament, horseshoe tournament, and a sandcastle building contest. Vendors provide food, arts and crafts, amusement rides and other activities. There is live musical entertainment both days at the Holden Beach’s Pavilion.
For more information »  click here


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


Calendar of Events Island –


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


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


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


Reminders


Free Dump Week
The Brunswick County Solid Waste Department hosts two free cleanup weeks a year, the week prior to the third Saturday in April and September. Brunswick County property owners and residents may dispose of all materials, except for regular household trash and hazardous waste, at the Brunswick County Landfill free of charge September 13th – 17th. Metal, tires, electronics, latex paint, and yard debris can be disposed of during free dump week, but they must be placed in their designated area. Business and commercial vehicles will be charged normal tipping fees. You must show proof of Brunswick County property ownership or residency.

 Brunswick County Landfill
172 Landfill Rd NE, Bolivia, NC 28422

Hours of operation are:
Monday through Friday 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Saturday 7:30 a.m. to 3:00 pm.


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


Solid Waste Pick-Up Schedule
GFL Environmental change in service, trash pickup will be twice a week. Starting the Saturday before Memorial Day through the Saturday after Labor Day: Pick-up is every Tuesday and Saturday from May 29th through September 25th.
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Please note:
. • Trash carts must be at the street by 6:00 a.m. on the pickup day
. • BAG the trash before putting it in the cart
. • Carts will be rolled back to the front of the house


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

Recycling
after Memorial Day weekly pick-up


. .

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

.


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

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

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

Website:
http://www.secondhelping.us



Bird Nesting Area

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


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

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


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

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

Spraying is complaint based, so keep the calls coming!


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

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



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

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

* One extra trash can per every 2 bedrooms.

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§ 50.08 RENTAL HOMES.

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


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

§157.087 BUILDING NUMBERS.

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

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



BOC’s Meeting
The Board of Commissioners’ next Regular Meeting is scheduled on the third Tuesday of the month, September 20th
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News from Town of Holden Beach
The town sends out emails of events, news, agendas, notifications and emergency information. If you would like to be added to their mailing list, please go to their web site to complete your subscription to the Holden Beach E-Newsletter.
For more information » click here


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


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


Waupaca Elevator Recalls to Inspect Elevators Due to Injury Hazard

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

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


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



Neighborhood Watch –

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


Upon Further Review –


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

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

Previously reported – July 2022
The NC Department of Transportation has informed the town that due to permitting issues raised during their review of the Ocean Boulevard Repaving/Bike Lane Project, construction will not begin in September as previously planned. Construction is now scheduled to start after the first of the year. The project will still have a completion date of Memorial Day.

Previously reported – June 2022
Execution of the agreement with DOT is required to construct the Ocean Boulevard Bike Lanes Project this fall in conjunction with the resurfacing of Ocean Boulevard. The project is estimated at $1,722,364 of which 42% or $723,393 is the Town’s share. The remaining 58% or $998,971 is funded by the Grand Strand Area Transportation Study (GSATS). The Board authorized the execution of the Transportation Improvement Agreement with the Department of Transportation.

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

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

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

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


Corrections & Amplifications –


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

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

EVACUATION, CURFEW & DECALS

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

How do I get decals for my vehicle…?

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


Turtle Watch Program –

Turtle Watch Program – 2022

Current nest count – (64) as of 08/20/22
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Average annual number of nests is 39.5

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


Odds & Ends –



Wildlife Commission asks beachgoers to be mindful of nesting birds
Waterbirds are nesting and brood-rearing now through Aug. 31
Before hitting the beach this summer, visitors should remember to “share the shore” with beach-nesting birds, giving them, their eggs and chicks a wide berth. Waterbird nesting is now under way along the coast, and biologists with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission urge people to watch where they step on the beach because these birds are very sensitive to human disturbance. Eggs and chicks are well camouflaged and can be unintentionally stepped on and crushed by humans and pets. Getting too close to a nesting bird can cause it to fly off, leaving the eggs or chicks vulnerable to the elements or to predators. “Birds have their ways of letting you know when you’re too close,” said Carmen Johnson, the Wildlife Commission’s waterbird biologist. “They’ll call loudly and dive at you. Some species will pretend to have a broken wing to lure you or other perceived predators away from the nest and chicks.” Because beachgoers may not recognize bird-nesting habitats, the Wildlife Commission asks the public to observe the black-and-white signs posted by the agency and signs posted by agency partners around important beach-nesting areas and islands. The signs help people avoid nesting grounds from April 1 through Aug. 31, the sensitive nesting and brood-rearing season, and advise that entering an area can result in the loss of eggs or chicks. Wildlife Commission staff also remind boaters to be mindful of nesting birds on islands, particularly if they approach an island posted with the black-and-white signs. “You can help North Carolina’s waterbirds have a successful nesting season by observing them from outside the posted areas, and avoiding islands marked as bird-nesting areas, or unmarked islands where you see nesting birds,” Johnson said. “Some birds nest near the high tide line, and the likelihood of disturbing nests and stepping on flightless chicks is high.” Johnson added that it is especially important to adhere to the “no dogs” rule on the signs. Not only is it the law, but one dog can destroy an entire bird nesting colony in minutes. Some islands that serve as beach-nesting habitat are not marked with black-and-white signs, such as many of the state’s marsh islands in the sounds. Johnson recommends that people give these islands a buffer between their activities and any nesting birds. Likewise, not all nesting areas on the beach are posted, so coastal visitors and residents should be always aware of their surroundings. Beachgoers can help protect nesting shorebirds are by: Keeping dogs on a leash at all times. Dogs may chase and harass birds, as well as trample nests, killing chicks or crushing eggs. Following the beach driving regulations. If driving is permitted, only drive on the lower part of the beach and drive slowly enough to avoid running over chicks. Disposing of trash properly when leaving the beach, including bait and scraps from cleaned fish, which can attract predators such as gulls, raccoons, feral cats and foxes. Discarding fishing line and kite string in an appropriate receptacle. These materials can entangle and kill birds and other wildlife if left on the beach. Abstaining from feeding gulls. Gulls are a major predator of young chicks and eggs. Avoiding flying drones and kites near nesting colonies. They may be mistaken for a predator. Cooperating with these simple steps and observing the posted signs will protect valuable bird resources and preserve our amazing beaches and wild waterfronts. For more information about beach-nesting waterbirds and how to protect them, down-load the “North Carolina’s Beach-Nesting Birds” document or visit the Wildlife Commission’s conserving webpage https://www.ncwildlife.org/Conserving/Conserving-North-Carolinas-Wildlife-Resources. Beacon


Beach Strand –


‘Four deaths this year is so devastating’:
The cost of not having lifeguards on Oak Island

Independence Day celebrations on Oak Island were bittersweet last weekend, tainted with news that a beachgoer had drowned in the ocean Sunday. It is the fourth drowning death on the island this year, raising questions and concerns about what safety measures are in place and if they are enough. Sydney Napier, resident of the west end of the island, doesn’t think the city has taken ample precautions to prevent tragedies like this from recurring. Ultimately, Napier maintains there should be lifeguards on the beaches. “I honestly don’t believe everything that can be done is done,” Napier said. “The public, especially tourists that don’t know better, can’t possibly be held responsible for knowing the risk. Four deaths this year is so devastating.” According to the United States Lifesaving Association — and based on 10 years of reports from USLA-affiliated lifeguard agencies — the chance of someone drowning with a USLA lifeguard nearby is 1 in 18 million. While there are other important safety tactics in open water drowning prevention, trained lifeguards are the gold standard. It wasn’t always lifeguard-less along this area of the Brunswick County shoreline. Prior to merging with Yaupon Beach in 1999 to form Oak Island, a section of the island, then known as Long Beach, did have lifeguards. A land use plan update from 1988 showed that lifeguards had been funded on Long Beach out of the recreation budget since at least 1974. A classified ad for seasonal lifeguards appeared in The Brunswick Beacon in 1991, indicating the program was still operating at that time. Oak Island public information officer Michael Emory said comparing the former municipalities to modern day would be “somewhat skewed.” “The overall size and dynamics of population, beach length, as well as level of other required municipal services, are now completely different,” he said. US Census data for the area over the last decade reflected an increase of approximately 30% in residents, now topping out at almost 9,000. Emory said Oak Island beaches have anywhere between 20,000 to 30,000 daily visitors during peak summer months. Though Emory was unaware of any recent considerations by the town council to add lifeguards back to the budget, a 2020-2025 “Parks, Recreation and Open Space Master Plan” from 2019 shows a recommendation to implement a flag warning system between the Oak Island Fishing Pier and the Ocean Crest Fishing Pier. It also suggested hiring 20 or 25 part-time seasonal lifeguard positions before the end of 2023. 
Emory said the town often reviews its policies and looks to see what other beaches with similar sized populations are doing. Nearby in New Hanover County — wherein all of its beaches are outfitted with lifeguards — Carolina Beach has 6,000 residents with an influx of 30,000 visitors daily during the summer. In its 2022-2023 budget, it will pay over $600,000 to lifeguard needs to cover around 3 miles of beach. “Currently, there would be steep, if not prohibitive challenges for staffing, equipping, and in some cases housing lifeguards to cover all 65 of our public beach accesses across the nearly 10 miles of public beach area,” Emory said of Oak Island. “In addition to recruiting employees, the support structure of vehicles, radios, towers, and other equipment must be factored in as well.” The financial cost of prevention and response is the recurring challenge when it comes to the discussion of water safety in the area. Oak Island isn’t alone; currently, none of the six beach towns in Brunswick County have lifeguards. For now, the town is focusing on education campaigns and ways to create increased public awareness. The newly launched “OKInformation” includes a text-messaging service that will alert mobile subscribers when surf conditions are “red flag” or high risk. Oak Island also installed new signage prior to the July 4th holiday weekend, warning visitors to refrain from blocking beach accesses; 22 of the 65 are designated for emergency use. One of the four deaths this year occurred at the beach access on Napier’s street. She said the path is so narrow even a golf cart can’t pass through on a busy day. Oak Island Water Rescue posted on its social media Memorial Day weekend that the W. 23rd Street beach access was full as they tried to respond to a call-in regard to a swimmer in distress. While no vehicles were illegally parked, larger trucks and SUVs extended into access points and prevented the fire department’s wide, paramedic-equipped engine from getting through. “Fortunately, we were able to use a different beach access, without a delay in response, to make our way into the beach. That beach access was almost blocked with parked vehicles as well,” OIWR noted in its post. The town is in the process of changing the layout of several parking lots in order to ensure there is room for rescue vehicles to pass. Town council will make a consideration at its Tuesday meeting to also install white signs with red letters at every access point forewarning against dangerous rip currents. According to the agenda packet, Mayor Pro Tempore Bach is bringing the matter to council due to “the recent tragic incidents,” referring to the four deaths already this season. The agenda also states the town should “redouble efforts to inform visitors of the inherent danger of ocean swimming.” While intended to protect beachgoers, these efforts are not adequate to residents like Napier, particularly since they rely on people noticing, reading, and following visual guides without a lifeguard enforcing them. Not to mention, the critical response time is incredibly brief when a person is at risk of drowning. Brunswick County resident Kelly Helbig knows this firsthand. She started the Jack Helbig Memorial Foundation (JHMF) after her son drowned in a lake in Brunswick County at only 4 years old. She has made it her mission ever since to educate the public on water safety and drowning prevention. “In the case of a drowning, every second counts; we don’t have minutes for Ocean Rescue or EMS to respond,” Helbig said. The JHMF — in collaboration with Southport Rotary and Oak Island Water Rescue — funded $1,800 in signs they installed at public beach accesses on Oak Island. Each displays a QR code leading to a virtual risk flag and a corresponding guide explaining what each flag color means: 

      • Purple means marine pests
      • Green means low risk with calm conditions
      • Yellow means medium risk with moderate surf
      • Red means high risk with strong currents
      • Two red flags indicate that the water is closed to the public

The JHMF also worked with Eagle Scout candidate Jackson Enis to install brightly colored rescue cans and life rings on Caswell, a 4-mile stretch at the eastern end of Oak Island. The cans are buoyant, torpedo-shaped rescue devices usually used by lifeguards. They aren’t a perfect solution, but they serve as an aid for bystanders who may act as first responders. “We don’t want to encourage bystanders to run into the water, but 25% of drowning victims were attempting to save someone else,” Helbig said. “If we can have a flotation device available there, then maybe they both have a chance to survive.” Emory said the city is open to rescue cans. “If they or any other private organization would like to enhance [current safety measures] with flotation devices, I’m sure that is something the Town Council would consider,” he said. It would come down to the logistics of purchasing, maintaining, and replacing them in the event of weather damage, theft, or vandalism. The JHMF placed 14 total rescue cans at Caswell Beach this spring. Each can cost $69 and is mounted on a stand displaying a risk flag color guide and virtual QR code. The stands cost about $150 each. So far, only one rescue aid has needed replacement this year, though Helbig estimates all aids will need replacement every two years. Equipping all public 65 accesses on Oak Island would be no small undertaking but one with major life-saving potential. This year all four swimmers that passed away on Oak Island were helped first by bystanders. An ER physician from Kentucky led resuscitation efforts after an off-duty law enforcement officer pulled 52-year-old drowning victim Kevin Whitley of Hickory, N.C., out of the water last Sunday. Oak Island Water Rescue (OIWR) training coordinator Carl Mauney said he has never responded to a drowning incident where no one attempted to swim out and help. A nonprofit and volunteer-based organization, OIWR has provided water rescue and education on the island for 25 years. Mauney has been the training coordinator for the last year. The organization operates on a $70,000-a-year budget, recently having received $21,500 from the town and $9,000 from the county. OIWR also relies on donations from the public to maintain its enterprise and fund capital expenses, such as replacing rescue vehicles and radios as needed. If OIWR arrives prior to EMS and fire crews during a rescue, they are technically in charge of the initial emergency responses, via incident command system protocols, Mauney said. To prepare for rescues, they regularly drill and work with the National Weather Service to corroborate readings on the area’s water conditions by providing daily surf reports. As part of its public information strategy, OIWR had approximately 2,000 magnets printed with QR codes, like those on the signs funded by JHMF. They lead to the virtual flag posted on OIWR’s website, based on a live surf report and weather models from the National Weather Service. “The goal was to put a QR code magnet on the refrigerator of every rental home,” Mauney said. But the reach has gone well beyond rentals. On July 5th, the police department announced its beach services unit began outfitting some of their patrol UTVs with physical warning flags indicating the rip current levels, complete with the magnetic QR codes. Mauney said the response to the QR code has been overwhelming. Restaurants and other businesses also have printed and displayed copies. Since May 30, the code has been scanned about 16,000 times. “Education is more important than ever before,” Mauney said. “Anytime you can prevent a 911 call, that’s better than responding to one.”
Read more » click here


Four drownings in three months:
Oak Island looks to educate, improve beach safety
Since the start of the peak beach season at Oak Island, four people have drowned in the island’s picturesque waters. Most recently, a 52-year-old man fell victim to a rip current at public beach access near the middle of the island on July 3. The tragedy cast a dark cloud over the July Fourth holiday and has inspired changes among the island’s first responders looking to educate citizens. From July 1 to July 9, some 80,000 cars crossed the Long Beach Road bridge into Oak Island, according to Oak Island Police Chief Charlie Morris. In a recent report to Oak Island Town Council, Morris said that amount of traffic was average for the island’s peak tourist season, but it was a busy week, nonetheless. During the holiday weekend, Oak Island police responded to 238 calls for service. Much of that traffic was heading to the beach. Brunswick County beaches do not have lifeguards, and instead rely on local first responders to provide rescue services.
Educating beachgoers
This year, the police department, the Oak Island Fire Department and Oak Island Water Rescue have ramped up their efforts to educate tourists and locals alike on one of the risks involved with swimming in the ocean: rip currents. According to the National Weather Service, rip currents are powerful surges of water that run perpendicular to the beach, pulling water from shore out into open water. If caught in one, it can be a difficult and taxing feat to swim back to shore. Using social media and other outreach, the departments are encouraging beach visitors to learn about the hazard conditions on the beach before heading into the water. Dotted along the island’s public beach access points are signs indicating which conditions are reflected in the color-coded flags: green, yellow and red for low, medium and high hazard, respectively. Each sign also contains a QR code that, when scanned, shows visitors a more in-depth look at the current hazard conditions online. At least half of the island’s 2022 drownings happened on “yellow flag” days, which indicate medium surf conditions. According to Oak Island Water Rescue, rip currents are present even on low-risk days — though they’re likely less frequent and weaker than higher-risk days. Morris said emergency responders are working to monitor ocean conditions and updating the flags to reflect current conditions, as risk could change through the day. On July 1, the town launched a new public notification system, “OKInformation.” The system allows the town to send out email and text notifications to those that enroll, informing them of beach conditions and other town news. Recent increases in island traffic and tourism have prompted some changes to its newly established Beach Services Unit, Morris said. The Beach Services Unit is a civilian-staffed branch of the Oak Island Police Department. The unit’s employees work to patrol the beach, enforce parking, and operate drones from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily during the island’s peak beach season of May 13 to Sept. 5. Now, the beach service patrol utility terrain vehicles are equipped with first aid kits and fly warning flags indicating current weather conditions, and some staff will soon undergo CPR training. Ahead of the July 4 holiday weekend, the town installed new signage to remind beachgoers to keep emergency access locations clear in case emergency response is needed. At the town council’s July 12 meeting, council member John Bach suggested the town consider adding warning signs at each public access, encouraging beachgoers to use caution and consider the current conditions before entering the water. “It’s not about aesthetics, it’s about saving lives,” Bach said. Bach said he thinks tourists would be more likely to take notice of a warning sign, rather than take the several steps to go online and check the current conditions or educate themselves on the meaning of the beach warning flags. “I’m telling you we need a sign, because parents and visitors are busy, they’re carrying things, they’re not paying attention,” Bach said. The council is set to continue discussing the addition of warning signs at its August meeting.
How can you spot a rip current, and what do you do if you’re in one?
According to the National Weather Service, there have been 171 rip current deaths in the Carolinas since 2000. Of the decedents, 80% resided in inland areas. On June 14, Morris said, officials responded to the beach and found a 67-year-old woman who had drowned. According to the National Weather Service, she had been caught in a rip current. She was from Knoxville, Tennessee. Despite life-saving measures, the woman died. “The primary reason visitors and vacationers are the ones drowning in rip currents is that they do not know what to do,” Oak Island Water Rescue said. “They aren’t aware of the danger and don’t understand rip currents. They can’t recognize them, and they don’t know the survival strategies of swimming sideways or floating to survive. It’s unrealistic to expect everyone vacationing at the beach to understand rip currents.” According to the National Weather Service, rip currents can be spotted by locating the areas between breaking waves where water is flowing toward the ocean, rather than toward the shoreline. If caught in a rip current, the easiest way to escape is to swim parallel to the shoreline. Oak Island Water Rescue suggests bringing a boogie board or U.S. Coast Guard-approved float cushion to the beach, as they could be helpful in the event a rescue is needed. Wearing a lifejacket can help an individual float if caught in a rip current, Oak Island Water Rescue said.
Read more » click here



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Shark fishing tournament
reels in big concerns

 


After intense pressure by leaders of four beach communities, organizers of a shore-based shark fishing tournament have agreed to shift the event from mid-summer to October, along with making other concessions for swimmer safety. The Southport-based Madkingz Tackle fishing store-sponsored event will now be the first week of October, instead of July 15-22 as previously announced, said owner Marty Wright. At first, the event was to include shore-based anglers who could fish anytime for sharks from the eastern tip of Oak Island (Caswell Beach) to Ocean Isle Beach. Participants would have been allowed to chum for sharks using kayaks up to a mile offshore. Chumming is a practice that usually involves putting blood, internal organs and fish parts in the water to attract sharks. It is prohibited on Oak Island Pier year-round. The plan churned a tempest of controversy and rebukes from leaders of Oak Island, Ocean Isle, Holden, and Caswell beaches, who said that intentionally attracting sharks to the shore during the height of the tourist season would be unwise. “It’s idiotic to put shark bait in with our swimmers at the busiest time of the year,” said Holden Beach Mayor Alan Holden, who has worked as a commercial fisherman, charter boat captain, 100-ton certified ship captain and been an avid recreational angler for 70 years. His town was considering seeking a court injunction before tournament plans changed. Caswell Beach and at least two other towns sent letters of protest to the sponsor. “Given the fact that the intent of this activity is to bring predators closer to the shore, The Town of Caswell Beach cannot condone a tournament such as this because of the unnecessary increase in danger to swimmers,” town officials wrote in a July 8 letter. The town asked for the shark tournament to be cancelled and threatened legal action if that didn’t happen. “The right to harvest fish is a strong right and it’s well-protected,” said Oak Island Mayor Liz White. “We have no intent to infringe on people and we have a lot of people who fish here year-round.” White added, however, that she believed the type of tournament first suggested “puts public safety in jeopardy.” Ocean Isle Mayor Debbie Smith called the original event “not the thing to do in the surf in the middle of summer.” Tournament sponsor Wright said that after a respectful call from White, he agreed to modify the tournament. The new rules are that land-based shark anglers must fish only at night, during the first week of October. The tournament is catch-and-release only and no chumming is allowed, Wright said. Participants will take pictures of landed sharks with tape measures and use a digital security device to ensure the shots are during specified times. “It’s not going to make a difference, but it’s about perception,” stated Wright, who resides at Oak Island and said he’d been fishing in the Cape Fear region for at least a dozen years.

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New trial date scheduled for Town of Holden Beach and man who planned shore-based shark tournament
WWAY has learned more about the documents filed against the man who planned a shark fishing tournament earlier this month in Brunswick County. A temporary restraining order filed July 13th by the Town of Holden Beach against the owner of Madkingz Tackle Marty Wright who also sponsored the controversial shark fishing tournament, was extended until July 23. According to court documents, both parties agreed the land-based shark tournament would be canceled. Leaders from Oak Island, Ocean Isle, and Both Holden and Caswell Beaches were concerned the tournament would be bad for business and create an unneeded danger in the water. WWAY reached out to the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries and talked to their spokeswoman Patricia Smith who said these types of tournaments are allowed, but with rules. “We do not prohibit shark fishing from our state’s beaches, there is a state tournament license that exists but that’s only required if you’re going to sell your catch,” said Smith. Those who plan on making a profit can obtain a license through the Division of Marine Fisheries License Offices. “There are some tournaments that fish are brought in to sell to a dealer, obviously all the fishermen will need to have a Coastal Recreational fishing license,” she said. These regulations apply to those 16 years of age or older who need to keep in mind the size and possession limits on different species of sharks in North Carolina waters. “So, any fishermen planning on going shark fishing would need to come on to our website and download a copy of those regulations,” said Smith. Court documents show a new trial is scheduled for July 26, WWAY reached out to both Holden Beach Mayor Alan Holden and Marty Wright, both  said they would not comment at this time. Wright planned another shore-based shark fishing tournament for the first week of October. The rules and regulations surrounding fishing tournaments can be found by clicking here. The regulations can be found on the Division of Marine Fisheries website Proclamation FF-41-2022, or anglers can download the Fish Rules App. These licenses are sold at Division of Marine Fisheries License Offices, online at https://www.ncwildlife.org/, and at many outdoors and bait and tackle shops. N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries does not prohibit chum fishing.
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Jellyfish
Jellyfish and Portuguese Man of War have been spotted along the surrounding area beaches already this season and the little floating creatures can pack a punch. Often times beachgoers will spot them washed up on shore and other times they can be spotted in the water, but it is best to avoid them when you can. “While all jellyfish sting, not all contain poison that hurts humans. Be careful of jellies that wash up on shore, as some can still sting if tentacles are wet. NOAA recommends that if you are stung by a jellyfish to first seek a lifeguard to give first aid. If no lifeguards are present, wash the wound with vinegar or rubbing alcohol,” NOAA suggests. And what about that … other method of treating stings? Turns out, it’s a myth. In fact, urine can actually aggravate the stinging cells of jellyfish, making things worse. These cells, which detach and stick into the skin of prey, can continue to inject venom. Urine, as well as fresh water, can cause an imbalance to the salt solution surrounding the stinging cells, causing them to continue to fire. According to Scientific American, if you don’t have vinegar or rubbing alcohol, rinsing with saltwater may be your best bet.

At the beach? Don’t pop the ‘balloons!’
We’ve definitely had some windy weather in the past few days. And on the coast, those winds bring with it an interesting sighting! The Cape Lookout National Seashore Park posted on Facebook about some very temptingly poppable-looking things that have been washing up on their beaches. These little “balloons” are gas-filled floats that keep the Man-o-War jellyfish afloat as they drift through the ocean. The winds can pick these floats up and they can wind up on the beach, but the folks at the park caution that no matter how tempting it is, you should not pop these things! “Give them a wide berth,” the Facebook post ways. These are carnivorous jellyfish and use their dangling tentacles to kill their prey. Even washed ashore, the tentacles still pack a punch, so don’t mess with the balloons! Stepping on it will hurt!
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Portuguese man o’ war
The man-of-War are not usually in the area unless pushed to the coast by wind and ocean currents. It is a purple-blue color and can be up to 10 inches long. The Portuguese man o’ war (Physalia physalis),
is not a jellyfish but related to the species and is highly venomous. It has numerous venomous microscopic nematocysts which deliver a painful sting powerful enough to kill fish. Stings can result in intense joint and muscle pain, headaches, shock, collapse, faintness, hysteria, chills, fever, nausea, and vomiting. Severe stings can occur even when the animal is beached or dead. Although it superficially resembles a jellyfish, the Portuguese man o’ war is in fact a siphonophore. Like all siphonophores, it is a colonial organism, made up of many smaller units called zooids. All zooids in a colony are genetically identical, but fulfill specialized functions such as feeding and reproduction, and together allow the colony to operate as a single individual.


 

 

Jellyfish Guide

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


This and That –


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Beachcombing Guide

 

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


Housing price hikes in some Wilmington-area towns are among the highest in NC In the past year housing prices have skyrocketed throughout most of North Carolina, but the Wilmington area is seeing the effects more than nearly anywhere else in the state. The three municipalities with the largest home price increases since last June are all in the Wilmington area, according to Zillow typical home data, including the top spot: Wrightsville Beach. Home prices in every Brunswick, New Hanover and Pender county town increased by at least 15% in the past year. In addition, the Wilmington area is home to almost one-quarter of North Carolina’s top 50 towns with the highest housing price increases.

Where are home prices rising most in Brunswick County?
As one of the state’s fastest growing areas, Brunswick County in particular has seen dramatic home price increases throughout many of its towns, leading to median home prices jumping by more than $97,000, or 32%, in the past year. In just the past six months the median home price across the county rose by nearly $50,000. Brunswick County is home to six of the top 50 towns with the largest price increases. Only Dare (10) and Wake (8) counties had more towns in the top 50. The Longwood area had the lowest price increase since last year, growing by $32,000 (23%) to $173,000. 

Holden Beach

Holden Beach typical home prices rose just over $246,000 (42%) since last June to about $830,000, the seventh highest increase in the state. 

      • Typical home price: $829,737
      • 6-month change: $115,236 (16%)
      • 1-year change: $246,761 (42.3%)
      • 5-yr change: $384,228 (86.2%)

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Hot Button Issues

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


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


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

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


 

GenX
For more information » click here

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Scientists find way to destroy PFAS chemicals
Some of the most stubborn manmade chemicals, which many health experts believe are harmful to humans, may have finally met their match, according to new research. WITN has been looking into the study that has found a way to destroy some categories of PFAS. Northwestern University researchers found out how to break the chemicals down with two relatively harmless chemicals. From drinking water to other common household items, PFAS chemicals—or forever chemicals, as they are infamously known, are found in a lot of places, and they tend to stay in the places they go. “They’re all manmade chemicals so these are not found naturally,” UNC Chapel Hill professor and chemist Frank Leibfarth said. “It’s a problem that will only get worse because they don’t degrade. They increase the risk of certain types of cancer.” That “forever” title, however, may have just met its match. A study published by researchers at Northwestern University has found a way to destroy these stubborn chemicals when it comes to GenX PFAS chemicals. Leibfarth says the research is a great advancement. “What this study did is said, ‘alright, we applied these conditions, and this is what we got out,’ but then they did the really hard work of understanding every step in that process,” Leibfarth said. Two harmless chemicals, sodium hydroxide, a chemical used to make soap, and dimethyl sulfoxide, a chemical approved as a medication, are the keys to the safe destruction of these PFAS. Exposing these particles to very high heat used to be the only operational way of destroying them in the past. The new method appears to be more energy efficient and safer. If Gen-X sounds familiar, it’s because you may remember the controversy surrounding the company Chemours and how it was accused of releasing the chemical into the Cape Fear River, a water source for hundreds of thousands in New Hanover County. “North Carolina, especially the Wilmington area, has really led a lot of national and international awareness of this issue,” Leibfarth said. The study found that the method was not effective on the PFOS, so research continues on how to best handle that classification of PFAS chemicals. There are many types of household water filters today that can help in blocking PFAS from making it into your cup.
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  • Homeowners Insurance

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  • Hurricane Season
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Weather Permitting: Hurricane season has been quiet so far in 2022.
Will it stay that way?
About a month ago, it seemed the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season was off and running. From the Carolinas to Central America, tropical storms were slogging ashore, with a seemingly endless freight train of low-pressure systems chugging across the Atlantic. Fast-forward to early August. No hurricanes, no storms. Not even a promising swirl for Hurricane Hunters to check out over the past month. It’s like someone pulled the tropical plug. For only the fourth time in the past 30 years, the stretch from July 4 to Aug. 4 has passed without any named storm activity. The tropics, it seems, are drier than the Baptist state convention. Were all the dire predictions of another hyperactive hurricane season just a lot of hot air? Or have weather enthusiasts just been spoiled by the nonstop tropical spin-ups we’ve seen over the past couple of years? The answer is probably a little bit of both. This 2022 season is the first in the past five years that got to August without at least one hurricane forming. And in the last 30 years, only four seasons have been storm-free from July 4 through Aug. 4: 1993, 1999, 2000 and 2009.
Remember this week two years ago? The Cape Fear region was bracing for the arrival of Hurricane Isaias — the ninth named storm of the season. Another storm, Hanna, had already become the first hurricane of the season, and by the end of the year, the National Hurricane Center was deep into the Greek alphabet of storm names. Last year saw another batch of storms — but oddly there was a four-week breather during July into August as well. That rest was rudely ended when a trio of named storms — Fred, Gracie and Henri — all dropped off the African coast within a few days of each other. The 2021 season went on to feature 21 named storms. So, we’ve been conditioned over the last couple of years to expect a parade of storms, especially with conditions that are conducive to development. A continuing La Nina, with above-average sea temperatures, would bode well for storm formation. And, as the hurricane season shifts from “homegrown” systems to the long-tracking Cape Verde storms, all eyes turn to the west coast of Africa. What we’ve seen for the last couple of weeks has been surprising. An extreme layer of bone-dry, dusty Sahara Desert air has cloaked the eastern Atlantic, choking potential storms as they wade off the coast. This dust cloud is a common summer feature, but it has been particularly potent during July. In addition, strong low-level winds have helped rip potential systems apart, and sinking air west of Africa prevents the towering storm clouds we associate with tropical systems. It doesn’t matter how warm the water is if the storms can’t use it. And right now, conditions in the central Atlantic are downright hostile.
What’s next
Will things stay that way? Not likely. Already there are indications that the Sahara Dust Layer is beginning to ease. As sea temperatures continue to creep up, sinking air should become less of an issue. And the wave train off Africa shows no sign of stopping. A few past “slow start” seasons may offer a hint for this year: The 2019 season saw an equally quiet start, with the Atlantic producing only a “C” storm (Chantal) by mid-August. A week later, the gates opened, and 2019 ended up with 18 named storms. In 2010, Tropical Storm Colin didn’t arrive until the first week of August, another slow start to the season. However, by the end of the month, two Category 4 storms formed (Danielle and Earl) and the season ended up with 19 named systems. Finally, the “slow start” season of 1999 made its mark on North Carolina. By early August, only one named storm had formed. By the end of the season, five Category 4 storms had formed, and two (Dennis and Floyd) teamed up that September to produce devastating floods in eastern North Carolina. And, for those keeping track, 1999 was another La Nina year. So, while things may seem quiet in the Atlantic, we’re actually not that far off the 30-year average for hurricanes. August is the traditional first month for hurricanes to form, with early September the peak of the season. Keep an eye on conditions in the Central Atlantic starting in mid-August. I think we’ve got a long way to go. Stay tuned!
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NOAA still expects above-normal Atlantic hurricane season
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather experts still expect the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season to have above-normal activity. NOAA released Thursday its annual mid-season update to the 2022 outlook issued in May by the Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service. Since the May report, which covers the six-month hurricane season that began June 1 and ends Nov. 30, forecasters have slightly decreased the likelihood of an above-normal Atlantic hurricane season from 65% to a 60% chance. Meanwhile, the likelihood of near-normal activity has risen to 30% and the chances remain at 10% for a below-normal season. NOAA’s update to the 2022 outlook calls for 14-20 named storms, which have winds of 39 mph or greater. Six to 10 of those named storms could become hurricanes with winds of 74 mph or greater. Of those, three to five could become major hurricanes with winds of 111 mph or greater. NOAA provides these ranges with a 70% confidence. “We’re just getting into the peak months of August through October for hurricane development, and we anticipate that more storms are on the way,” said NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad, in a statement. Erik Heden, warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service forecast office for Morehead City, told Coastal Review Monday that the peak of hurricane season is not until around Sept. 10. “Typically, the season really doesn’t get going until later in August through October. It’s too early to let our guard down, we aren’t even close to the typical peak yet,” he said. “Lastly, it only takes one storm to make a difference in your lives. Take this quiet time in the season to finish your hurricane kit and plan.” He recommended visiting www.weather.gov/MHX/hurricaneprep for help with a hurricane kit and plan. Heden said his office is offering more hurricane talks ahead, including one at 9 a.m. Wednesday in Emerald Isle board meeting room, 7500 Emerald Drive, and 6 p.m. Aug. 16 in North Topsail Beach Town Hall, 2008 Loggerhead Court. Sign up to virtually attend the North Topsail Beach talk. Two talks are planned for later this month on the Outer Banks, as well.
“Communities and families should prepare now for the remainder of what is still expected to be an active hurricane season,” said Ken Graham, director of the National Weather Service. “Ensure that you are ready to take action if a hurricane threatens your area by developing an evacuation plan and gathering hurricane supplies now, before a storm is bearing down on your community.”So far, the season has seen three named storms and no hurricanes in the Atlantic Basin. An average hurricane season produces 14 named storms, of which seven become hurricanes, including three major hurricanes. The outlook is for overall seasonal activity and is not a landfall forecast. Landfalls are largely governed by short-term weather patterns that are currently only predictable within about one week of a storm potentially reaching a coastline, according to NOAA. “I urge everyone to remain vigilant as we enter the peak months of hurricane season,” Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo said in a statement. “The experts at NOAA will continue to provide the science, data and services needed to help communities become hurricane resilient and climate-ready for the remainder of hurricane season and beyond.” There are several atmospheric and oceanic conditions that still favor an active hurricane season. This includes La Niña conditions, which are favored to remain in place for the rest of 2022 and could allow the ongoing high-activity era conditions to dominate, or slightly enhance hurricane activity. In addition to a continued La Niña, weaker tropical Atlantic trade winds, an active west African Monsoon and likely above-normal Atlantic sea-surface temperatures set the stage for an active hurricane season and are reflective of the ongoing high-activity era for Atlantic hurricanes. NOAA’s hurricane science and forecasting information is available at Hurricane Season Media Resource Guide and the National Hurricane Center provides the latest on tropical storm and hurricane activity in the Atlantic. “Although it has been a relatively slow start to hurricane season, with no major storms developing in the Atlantic, this is not unusual  and we therefore cannot afford to let our guard down,” said FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell. She recommends being proactive by downloading the FEMA app and visiting Ready.gov or Listo.gov for preparedness tips. “And most importantly, make sure you understand your local risk and follow directions from your state and local officials.”
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Inlet Hazard Areas
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Lockwood Folly Inlet
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Seismic Testing / Offshore Drilling

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Offshore Wind Farms

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Things I Think I Think –

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

Restaurant Review:
Dinner Club visits a new restaurant once a month. Ratings reflect the reviewer’s reaction to food, ambience and service, with price taken into consideration.
///// July 2022
Name:            Roko
Cuisine:         Italian
Location:      6801 Parker Farm Drive, Wilmington NC
Contact:        910.679.4783 /
https://www.rokoitalian.com/
Food:              Average / Very Good / Excellent / Exceptional
Service:         Efficient / Proficient / Professional / Expert
Ambience:    Drab / Plain / Distinct / Elegant
Cost:               Inexpensive <=17 / Moderate <=22 / Expensive <=27 / Exorbitant <=40
Rating:          Three Stars
Roko, established in 2012, is a very good local  family run Italian bistro featuring classic Italian dishes infused with fresh locally sourced ingredients. Located in Mayfaire Town Center, it offers a nice mix of casual and upscale dining with a broad-based menu that offers something for everyone. It’s a small busy place, with seating for only sixty-eight (68) people, that is filled to capacity nearly every evening. If you want to eat there you probably should call ahead for reservations. All in all, we had a nice meal there, but it really wasn’t anything special.


Hidden gem: After years of working for others, chef opens his own Brunswick County restaurant
Brad Ball has spent a lot of time in kitchens. Even before he became a chef, his family had a pizza place in Greensboro. He worked in a few spots there and eventually met his wife, Sara, before moving on to cities like Cincinnati and Charleston. When the couple moved to Southeastern North Carolina, Ball worked with James Doss at Wilmington’s Rx Restaurant and Bar and Rhonda Uhlman, who now owns the StreatSide food stand in Southport. More recently, Ball has worked for local clubs and spent several years as the executive chef of the Bald Head Island Club.  So, yes, he’s worked in a lot of kitchens. It’s just that until now, they haven’t been in his own restaurant. “It’s been a dream of his, having his own place,” said Sara Ball. The couple opened The Sea Biscuit Café in May at 3370 Stone Chimney Road in the Supply/Varnamtown/Holden Beach area of Brunswick County. So far, there have been some ups and downs, Ball said. But he has a suitably eclectic menu offering breakfast and lunch in an unassuming former diner. Breakfast is now a place with a farm-to-table approach to the classics, with local eggs (from just up the street), Guilford County grits and hand-pattied sausage. At lunch, you can order chicken pot pie or a fried bologna sandwich, as well as watermelon sashimi or a black bean burger enhanced with nuts and kale and served on a gluten free bun. Every morning, Ball goes to the docks in Varnamtown to get some fresh seafood for the shrimp and grits and the fish tacos, served Al Pastor style. “It started as an old-school diner, but has evolved into this,” he said. “People are already saying that it’s kind of a hidden gem,” Sara Ball said. But, in a way, they could just now start to experiment with the possibilities and freedom of having their own place. For example, they started a ghost kitchen just a few weeks ago. “I really like the idea of ghost kitchens,” Brad Ball said. “I like that it’s a concept that lives only on Facebook. It’s a way to explore a few different ideas.” When Sea Biscuit closes, locals can still order take-out and delivery from Pepe’s Pizza many nights of the week. “It’s hand-tossed, and a cross between New York and California style,” he said. The Meat Man and the Primo Supremo are favorites, but the Back Cheddar Burger pizza uses his house-made ground beef blend. In addition to having more chef-y freedom, there are a few other reasons the Balls decided to open this business – to give locals more options and to have more time as a family.  They say they’ve spent many evenings driving around looking for a good place to eat, only to have to go all the way to Wilmington. As Brunswick’s population booms, more people are looking for different options, they said. “This area has a lot of room for growth,” Sara Ball said.  “So many restaurants have opened up in Oak Island and Southport, we thought this would be a good place for us.” Brad Ball said he also appreciates being able to spend more time with his two children. “Before when I would leave for work, they’d be asleep and I’d get back and they’d be asleep,” he said. Now, even when they’re working, the kids can spend more time at the restaurant, Sara Ball said. She’s worked as a school counselor and has also been a stay-at-home mom. Now, she’s managing the restaurant while her husband focuses on the back of the house. She’s the one talking to customers and trying to learn just what it is they are hungry for. “It’s nice,” Brad Ball said. “We don’t have to have any corporate meetings.” “Well, we do have them,” she said. “We just have them while we’re sitting on the couch.” She said that her husband’s skill, and the details he puts into his work, makes it special. It’s the vinegar powder he adds to the fish-and-chips batter to give it that tangy bite and in the fresh fruit he uses for the daily cobbler. They are happy trying to offer something for everyone. “We are locals,” he said. “We want to be here for other locals. We want to be here for the ladies golfing group, and the VFW guys. We want to be here for the teenagers who don’t want to put away their phones.” They hope to add evening hours this fall,  but don’t expect them to give up on the ghost kitchen concept. Pepe’s Pizza has been popular, and Brad Ball is already also thinking about a concept serving international street food.
Read more » click here 


Dining Guide – Guests

Dining Guide – Local

Restaurant Reviews – North

Restaurant Reviews – South


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

THE MAGNOLIA PALACE by Fiona Davis
A tale of two models, decades apart, whose lives are changed at the Frick mansion. The dual timelines seamlessly connect  their lives within the New York’s Frick museum. Loosely based on the real-life artists’ model Davis layers a fictional story over the scaffolding of historical facts, she smoothly combines fact with fiction.

 


  • .That’s it for this newsletter

    See you next month


    Lou’s Views . HBPOIN

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07 – Town Meeting

Lou’s Views

“Unofficial” Minutes & Comments


BOC’s Special Meeting 07/19/22

Board of Commissioners’ Agenda Packet » click here

Audio Recording » click here NA


1. Interviews for Vacancies on Town Boards

Applications information » click here


BOC’s Regular Meeting 07/19/22

Board of Commissioners’ Agenda Packet click here

Audio Recording » click here


1. Discussion and Possible Action on National Park & Recreation Month Proclamation – Assistant Town Manager Ferguson

Agenda Packet – pages 21 – 22

Through efforts by the National Recreation and Park Association, the U.S. House of Representatives passed an official resolution for Park and Recreation Month in 2009 and introduced the resolution in 2017 and 2018. This year’s theme, We Rise Up for Parks and Recreation, underscores the importance of communities rallying around parks and recreation and the benefits that abound secondary to participation. Communities are encouraged to initiate their own proclamations (attachment l ). The Parks and Recreation Advisory Board and the Parks and Recreation Department have much to look forward to this year in terms of growth and change in facilities. The recently completed Parks and Recreation Master Plan indicates a path we should follow based on citizen feedback. The board has prepared a list of activities to assist our community in celebrating the month. We look forward to this proclamation serving as the catalyst to propel the community in these vitally important endeavors .

Suggested Motion: Motion to adopt the attached proclamation for National Park and Recreation Month and to initiate sharing on our web presences and on social media outlets.


We Rise Up for Parks and Recreation
At NRPA, We Rise Up for Parks and Recreation and all the professionals who build strong, vibrant and resilient communities through the power of parks and recreation. This July, we are bringing attention to how important it is to rise up and support our field, because every day, park and recreation professionals rise up for their communities in service of equity, climate-readiness, and overall health and well-being.
For more information » click here

Update –
Parks and Recreation is vitally important to establishing and maintaining the quality of life in our communities, ensuring the health of all citizens, and contributing to the economic and environmental well-being of our community. The Board adopted the proclamation.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


2. Discussion and Possible Action on Ordinance 22-18, An Ordinance Amending Ordinance 21-13, The Revenues and Appropriations Ordinance for Fiscal Year 2021 – 2022 (Amendment No. 19) – Town Manager Hewett

Item was added to the agenda

Update –
Housekeeping item to recognize development fees revenue in order to comply with Fiscal Control Act

Moved funds of $141,210
A decision was made –
Approved unanimously


3. Discussion and Possible Setting of Public Hearing for NC Public Beach and Coastal Waterfront Access Grant Application – Assistant Town Manager Ferguson

Agenda Packet – pages 23 – 25

Based on the BOC’s direction to pursue grant opportunities to assist with the development of the pier properties, the staff submitted a pre-application to the Division of Coastal Management for the development of the 50-foot lot for beach access to include a Hatteras ramp and walkway for a total project cost of $63,535.00. The agency approved the pre-application, and the town has been asked to complete a final application that will come before the BOC in August. As part of the application, a public meeting or hearing is required, and the staff determined that a public hearing would demonstrate the town taking the most formal approach to submission requirements. If awarded the grant, the BOC would still have to choose to accept or decline funds.

Suggested Motion: Set the public hearing for 5:00 p.m. on August  16th  prior  to  the start of the  regular  board meeting and ask the town clerk to advertise accordingly .

For more information » click here

Update –
Our preliminary request for funding of the Pier Access Improvements Public Beach Access by the Public Beach and Coastal Waterfront Access Grant Program has been reviewed by the Division of Coastal Management (DCM) and we are invited to submit a final application for further consideration in the 2022-23 grant cycle. As part of the application a Public Hearing is required, they scheduled it prior to the next BOC’s meeting.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


4. Police Report – Chief Jeremy Dixon

Police Patch
First two weeks in July are the busiest weeks of the year

Fairly uneventful, typical summertime fun at the beach

 

The police department currently has only eight (8) officers of the ten (10) they are budgeted to have. Otto handling the majority of parking issues.

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. 

Originally reported that they will implement the no left turn coming off the bridge on Saturdays from 9am to 3pm. Have not had the need to close the left turn lane on the bridge, traffic never backed up there. Watching the situation and if the need arises they will implement no left turn coming off the bridge again.

Reminded everyone its Hurricane Season be prepared, have a plan!

Message from Chief Dixon (Holden Beach Newsletter 06/01/22)
After seeing an increase in Low-Speed Vehicles (LSV) operated over the Memorial Day weekend, I wanted to take a moment to remind everyone that LSVs are registered vehicles consistent with NC General Statutes. As such, the operation of LSVs requires a valid driver license and the use of seatbelts and child restraints.

Memorial Day Message from Chief Dixonabridged version
Ensure all occupants of your vehicle are belted, to include properly installed child restraints. Remember that pedestrians have the right-of-way at all intersections, driveways and marked crosswalks. Pedestrians are reminded to check both directions and make sure that motor vehicles have come to a complete stop before proceeding into the roadway. Remember that “golf carts” operated on the roadways in Holden Beach are registered low speed motor vehicles. You must have tags, insurance, and a driver’s license to operate a “golf cart” anywhere within the town limits of Holden Beach. All motor vehicle laws including but not limited to seat belts, child restraints, driving while impaired and parking violations apply to “golf carts”. This increased traffic enforcement is designed to increase safety and save lives. Your safety is our priority.

Defensive Driving
Be 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.


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

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.


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

Public Safety Announcement
The Police Department would like to remind everyone that it is important to protect your personal property. Remove all items of value from your vehicle when you are not driving it. Always lock your vehicle doors when you are not in it. Leaving items on display, whether on the dashboard or sitting on a passenger seat, is an invitation to opportunist individuals. Make sure to follow these important tips!


A reminder of the Town’s beach strand ordinances:
…..1)
Chapter 90 / Animals / § 90.20 / Responsibilities of owners
…….a)
pets are not allowed on the beach strand except between 5p.m. and 9a.m. daily
…….b)
dog’s must be on a leash at all times
…….c)
owner’s need to clean up after their animals
…..2)
Chapter 94 / Beach regulations / § 94.05 / Digging of holes on beach strand
…….a)
digging holes greater than 12 inches deep without responsible person there
…….b)
holes shall be filled in prior to leaving
…..3)
Chapter 94 / Beach regulations / § 94.06 / Placing obstructions on the beach strand
…….a)
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
Golf carts are treated the same as other automotive vehicles. Town ordinances state no parking anytime on OBW. Therefore golf carts are illegally parked when left by any beach access points.


Parking
§72.02 PARKING REGULATED ON PUBLIC STREETS AND RIGHTS-OF-WAY.
(1) All vehicles must be as far off the public street rights-of-way as possible; and
(2) No vehicle may be left parked on any portion of any roadway; and
(3) No vehicle may be parked on portion of the sidewalk. … 


5. Discussion and Possible Action on Golf Cart Violation Reporting Tasker – Mayor Pro Tem Smith and Commissioner Kwiatkowski

Agenda Packet – page 30

Request for Golf Cart Infraction Details

Issue and Action Requested:

Golf cart parking and moving vehicle violations have become highly visible with the increasing number of golf carts being used by renters and property owners. In order to judge whether the Town’s increased communication and police department efforts are improving golf cart “safety” and compliance, the Board needs to see golf cart infraction details.

Background and Potential Implications:
Golf cart safety has become a major concern of many of our residents-we see frequent cases of underage drivers, unsafe driving, seat belts not used, babies in laps, and illegal parking. One of the justifications for increasing the THB police force last year was to be able to better enforce traffic and parking rules, with golf carts acknowledged as a particular problem. It is hoped that police warnings and, when necessary, ticketing early in the rental week leads to reduced infractions as the week progresses.

Without detailed golf cart infraction data neither the BOC or Town Staff can judge whether ongoing Town communication efforts and Police Department focused activities are reducing unsafe practices and illegal parking of golf carts. The BOC needs a report specific to golf carts that provides for all warnings and tickets. Below is a suggested list of information that would help Town Staff, the Board and our residents measure improvements and determine whether changes in education and/or enforcement activities would be appropriate.

Violation description:

    • Parking
    • Underage driver
    • Seat belt infraction
    • Child seat infraction Unsafe driving
    • Unlicensed vehicle

Warning or ticket
Date and day of week
Time of day
Location on island

A summary of findings would be presented at our monthly BOCM’s , suggested to start in August.

This time I would like to request we task the Town Manager with making sure we get this information every month with the Police report until the BOC can determine if we need to make changes or add an ordinance to protect our citizens and visitors.

Previously reported – June 2021
Discussion and Possible Action on Golf Cart Violation Reporting Tasker – Commissioners Kwiatkowski and Smith

Request for Golf Cart Infraction Details

Golf carts are supposed to be treated the same as any other automotive vehicle. Despite the educational signs and the police chiefs commitment of stepped-up enforcement I have not noticed any noticeable change in behavior. Have you? The police department say that golf carts are being addressed as a priority in order to keep people safe. Golf cart issues still appear to be out of control. Underage drivers that clearly don’t have a driver’s license, children not properly restrained, seat belts not being used, carts parked illegally  in the rights-of-way on OBW, are all safety issues that could have serious consequences.  Just to be clear, even though  we still see violations does not necessarily mean the police department has not  followed through on their commitment of stepped-up enforcement. Letting us know what they have been doing to get this issue under control would be helpful. Therefore, my recommendation is for Jeremy to include the number of warnings and tickets issued for golf cart violations in the meetings  police report.

Previously reported – July 2021
Pat & Rick are asking for violation reporting from the Police Department. They are requesting details specific to golf carts to help determine what kind of impact that our stepped-up enforcement is having. The police department currently do not data track by type of vehicle. Jeremy stated he did not like the request, nor does he have the staff to comply with the request.  The police department will continue to enforce the ordinances, but this request is not going to solve anything.

Update –
All rules that apply to motor vehicles apply to golf carts. Despite assurances that golf carts are being addressed as a priority in order to keep people safe, we have not seen any noticeable change in behavior, there still are a significant number of golf carts in violation of vehicle regulations. This is the same tasker from June of 2021. This is a safety issue and more needs to be done. They questioned whether enforcement is the issue. What we are doing is not working, they are trying to be proactive before anything bad happens. They just want to utilize measurement metrics to see if what we are doing is getting the desired effect. Jeremy objected to the Board giving them direction as to what laws to enforce, they enforce all laws on all vehicles and they can’t legally target specific vehicles. It was a convoluted response; all the Board is asking is for them to report what is being done to address the issue. The Board asked him to figure out how to make this happen and Jeremy reluctantly agreed that he will figure out how to capture the data.


6. Discussion and Possible Action on Speed Limit on Ocean Boulevard – Commissioner Dyer

Agenda Packet – pages 31 – 32

The main concern I have is for safety and to try and get crosswalks distinguished after paving. With the increase in permanent residents and addition of two bike lanes, I feel like a speed limit of 45 MPH is not safe. With the higher speed and more distracted drivers, I am concerned that there will be an incident. For example, a child will dart out and drivers can’t react in time at that speed. The increased population is year-round, not just in the summer.

Previously reported – January 2020
Proposal is to reduce speed limit on OBW to 35 miles per hour year-round

Police Chief Dixon had four (4) talking points

      1. Accident death rate goes from 45% to 85% when speed is increased by 10mph
      2. Stopping distance increases by 79 feet when speed is increased by 10mph
      3. Time difference from general store to west end gate is just over 1 minute with change
      4. Lower speed limit allows golf carts and installation of crosswalks

Timbo said that the town currently has identified four (4) authorized areas that meet the established criteria for crosswalks if we maintain the lower speed limit year-round. Jeremy was a little sheepish when asked if we had any issues with the higher speed limit because the answer was, we have not. That said, the four talking points are fairly persuasive. It was just the first round of discussion and the Board agreed they need to get more community input. Interestingly the HBPOA 2019 survey question on this had a very strong response of almost 80% for keeping the 45mph speed limit in the off season.

Previously reported – February 2021

Agenda Packet –
Over the last several months the Board of Commissioners has considered the option of amending the seasonal speed limit change on Ocean Blvd West from Greensboro St to its western terminus. This change would mean the speed limit on SR1116 (Ocean Blvd West) from a point 1.76 miles west from NC130 (Greensboro Street) to a point 5.01 miles west of NC130 (western terminus) would remain 35 MPH year-round instead of increasing to 45 MPH from October 1 to March  31 as stated in current ordinance. This detailed report is a collection of data from numerous sources to assist the Board of Commissioners in reach an educated and well-informed decision.

Section I – Minutes from January, February, July, and September BOC meetings . These minutes summarize the discussions had pertaining to this topic.

Section 2 – During the January 2020 BOC meeting, Chief Dixon made a detailed presentation with statistical data on vehicle speeds, travel times and braking distances. An 18-page report of Chief Dixon’s presentation is included herein for you review .

Section 3 – NC General Statute 20- 141 Speed Restrictions. Subsections (B)(1) and (F) are most applicable to this conversation . In summary, speed limits within municipal corporate limits are not to exceed 35 MPH, unless supported by an engineering and traffic  investigation  (4 pages  included). Upon researching this topic, no such study was found on record by the Town of Holden Beach or the NC Department of Transportation. Based upon this information, a study was recently completed by the Department of Transportation. This 17-page report and its conclusion is included herein for you review.

NC DEPARTMENT  OF TRANSPORTATION
This is regarding your request for a speed limit evaluation on SR 1116 (Ocean Blvd .) in Holden Beach, Brunswick County. We share your concern for highway safety and appreciate you bringing your concerns to our attention.

The Department has completed an engineering investigation to determine if the technical warrants are met to recommend changing the speed l imit. A speed study was conducted that includes evaluating the 85th percentile speed, road characteristics, existing conditions, and surrounding environment. The 85th percentile speed is the speed at or below which 85 percent of the sampled vehicles travel. Typically, the 85th percentile speed is used to determine the speed limit. This helps to avoid posting speed limits that are artificially low, which can become difficult to enforce. The 85th percentile speeds om SR 1116 (Ocean Blvd.) were 40mph, 50mph, 50mph, and 45mph in four different locations with the seasonal 45mph (off-seasonal) zone, and 43mph within the 35mph zone.

Based on the findings, these roads are posted appropriately for the data we collected (for Off-Peak Season Traffic). I have included the raw data for this study for your review. A pamphlet is included on speed limits  produced by the NC Department of Transportation, which explains how speed limits are determined throughout the state.

Jeremy briefly explained that the  traffic and engineering investigation has been completed. NCDOT said that they support the current posted speed limits, and we can leave the ordinance as it is written. The Board discussed this and were unable to settle on whether they want to change it or not. It will be put on next month’s meeting agenda for discussion and to decide whether to leave the ordinance as it is or reduce speed limit on OBW to 35 miles per hour year-round.

Previously reported – March 2021
Mike stated that this issue has been on our radar for over a year, and they need to bring it to a close. The motion he made was to leave the ordinance as it is written. There was a brief discussion about crosswalks and golf carts affecting their decision process. They decided to leave things as they are.

Update –
Once again they are proposing lowering the speed limit on Ocean Boulevard to 35 miles per hour year-round. In 2019 the HBPOA survey had a very strong response of almost 80% for keeping the 45mph speed limit in the off season. A little over a year ago the NCDOT said that they support the current posted speed limits, and we can leave the ordinance as it is written. Police Chief acknowledged that we have not had any issues with the higher speed limit. Yet here we are.  Their default position is that Public Safety is what’s most important and the driving force for the change. They are not actually changing ordinance at this meeting; they will have to bring back ordinance to implement the change.

A decision was made – Approved (3-1)
Commissioner Smith opposed the motion

As far as I’m concerned they gave some cockamamie reasons to justify their action, totally disregarding all the previous times the issue was raised and it was determined that a speed limit change was not necessary. Frankly, it doesn’t matter what the posted speed limit is, this is an enforcement issue, plain and simple.


7. Inspections Department Report – Inspections Director Evans

Agenda Packet – pages 33 – 37

Previously reported – June 2022
Timbo prepared a slide presentation. They are dedicated to keeping families and visitors safe, by enforcing the applied rules and regulations applicable to development and construction within the town corporate limits. Building on the island has picked up exponentially and he made it clear that they have been very, very, busy. The department has the inability to cut corners, they can’t reduce process and carry out their core responsibilities.

Apparently Timbo took umbrage to the criticism of the department at the last meeting and prepared this report in response. We get it, there is a lot going on.

Update –
Bottomline, a lot of building is going on. They have a new inspector in training, so we now have two people out there. The department is down an  administrative person which will affect turnaround time. They are trying to do the best they can. Don’t really see the need for a monthly update, I’d think his time is better spent elsewhere.


8. Discussion and Possible Action on Ordinance 22-17, An Ordinance Amending Town of Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Chapter 112: Peddlers – Inspections Director Evans
a.
Fee Schedule Revision

Agenda Packet – pages 38 – 42

Ordinance 22-17 was prepared for consideration and possible approval by the Board of Commissioners, Staff prepared the draft ordinance as directed by the Board at its last scheduled meeting. The dates of operation and times were excluded and can be entered if the Board so approves the amended section.

Ordinance is so designed to allow only those merchants with established businesses to conduct such business remotely on the strand with specific guidelines, locations and dates by permit only.

Previously reported –
Sunset Slush has been operating on Holden Beach since 2010. Customers continually ask them why they do not have pushcarts on the beach strand. They currently have pushcarts on other islands in the surrounding communities. They are requesting permission to operate pushcarts on our beach strand too. They asked the Commissioners to consider what is best for the tourists who stay here and support us.

A motion was made but it was not seconded. Therefore, there was no discussion by the Commissioners either for or against having pushcarts on the beach strand. Peddling is prohibited and I suppose they didn’t want to open a can of worms.

Previously reported – February, 2017
Guest Speaker: Sellers Family – Owners of Sunset Slush – Sell Italian Ice on the Beach Strand (Mayor Pro Tem Fletcher and Commissioner Freer)
This is the eighth season that they have a brick-and-mortar presence on the island. They currently have pushcarts on other islands in the surrounding communities. We are one of only four beaches that do not allow peddling. Their position is that they are speaking for the tourists; we should do what is best for the tourists who stay here and support us. They are only on the beach strand for a few hours a day, they pick-up debris as they go, and they agreed to approval on a one-year trial basis.

This would be at least the fourth attempt they’ve made requesting permission to operate pushcarts on our beach strand. Most people that spoke each time that they have asked were opposed to the proposal. Many property owners chose to be here because the island is not commercialized.

The discussion felt like it went on forever. Thankfully, Commissioner Kyser called for a point of order. The agenda item was for a presentation only, so it was not appropriate for them to discuss, it should have been limited to just their presentation. Currently our ordinances outright prohibit peddling. The next step would be for the Town staff in conjunction with our lawyer to work on a regulation.
No decision was made – No action taken

Public Comments on Agenda Items
Several people spoke against the Sunset Slush proposal to peddle ices on the beach strand at this meeting and at previous meetings when the subject was brought up. Mark Fleischhauer read a letter written by his wife Karen in 2008 at the time of the original request. This is the abridged version of the letter which pretty much sums up the thoughts of those opposed to the idea.

I do not want to see any commercial business on the beach. What concerns me most is allowing commercial businesses of any sort to spoil the natural beauty and calm of our family beach. People choose Holden Beach because it is a place that has remained the same throughout the years. Vacationers as well as residents continue to bring their children and grandchildren here so they can enjoy the same simple pleasure of going to the beach that they enjoyed as a child. I beg you to please don’t commercialize our wonderful island. Please don’t open Pandora’s Box. How will you vote if approached by others who may want to sell hot dogs, hemp bracelets and shell art or services such as Caribbean style beaded hair braiding. I’ve heard mention of all these opportunities. Don’t jeopardize the fact that we our rated in the elite top ten of family beaches. We got there for what we already have, natural beauty and that is priceless. We can’t improve on perfect.

I for one do not want to see peddlers on the beach strand.
The question that needs to be asked is:
What does the community want the island to be?


Previously reported – June 2022
Discussion and Possible Action on Request by Sunset Slush Classic Italian Ice to Utilize Vending Carts on the Beach Strand – Commissioner Dyer

Agenda Packet – pages 146 – 148
On April 1, 2010 Sunset Slush Classic Italian Ice, which has been serving the Brunswick County area since 2003 had the privilege of becoming a part of the Holden Beach community. We have strived to bring a family fun-filled and inviting atmosphere to our beautiful beach town while serving our delicious Italian ice. We have been approached every summer by tourists and locals alike inquiring why we do not serve on the strand. Of course, we always respond letting them know that we have tried but the laws of the town prohibit vending. With all the changes coming to Holden Beach this season, paid parking and vending food trucks, we are thinking it is a great time to ask the town to revisit our proposal to bring our carts to Holden Beach. We are entering our 19th season of vending with our carts on Ocean Isle Beach and Oak Island. We have made great relationships with our customers on all of our Brunswick County beaches and we hope our reputation speaks within itself of how we do business and support the growth and change of our beautiful area and beaches. We would greatly appreciate your consideration in giving us the opportunity as beach servers, if not long-term then maybe consider a trial season to see if this is something the town, the locals and tourists would enjoy as a desirable addition as our family beach continues to grow.

§112.01 DEFINITION.
For the purpose of this chapter, PEDDLING shall mean the selling, bartering, or exchanging or the offering for sale of any tangible personal property, including but not limited to food and ice cream, upon or along the streets, highways, or public places of the town or from private property within or without the permission of the owner thereof, from any wagon, truck, pushcart, concession stand, or tent, or other movable receptacles of any kind.

§112.02 PEDDLING PROHIBITED.
Pursuant to the authority granted under G.S. §§ 160A-178 and 160A-194, as amended, the activity of peddling within the limits of the town is prohibited.

Sunset Slush has been operating on Holden Beach since 2010. They currently have pushcarts on other islands in the surrounding communities. They are requesting permission to operate pushcarts on our beach strand here too. They are nothing if not persistent; this will be at least the fifth time (08, 12, 14, 17, 22) that they have made this request to operate pushcarts on our beach strand. Currently our ordinances outright prohibits peddling. The Board allowed the owners the Sellers family, who are from here, to make a presentation. They reviewed the protocols on the other islands that allow them to operate there. They used a basic sales technique, they addressed what they know to be the standard objections to allow peddling on the beach strand. The Board gave town staff a directive to bring proposed Ordinance for consideration at the next meeting, with the recommendation to benchmark off OIB existing Ordinance. Even by limiting it to vendors with a brick-and-mortar presence on the island, that would still allow nine (9) potential vendors to peddle on the beach strand. Is that really what we want? This Board, in their infinite wisdom, think that this is a good idea despite four (4) previous Boards not approving this same request. But, as the saying goes: If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.

Allowing peddling on the beach strand would set a really bad precedent. Once you allow one vendor to peddle goods others will want to get in the queue and request to do the same thing. Where do you draw the line? Do the island property owners want to commercialize the island? Do we really want peddlers on the beach strand? Do we want to be the next Jersey Shore? I don’t think so!

Update –
Proposal is for allowing peddling on the beach strand with specific guidelines as follows:

      • Only Vendors With a Brick-and-Mortar Presence on the Island
      • Permits Required
      • Associated Fees ($250 permit / $1,000 per pushcart)
      • Food & Beverages Only
      • Locations Permitted
      • Restricted Dates
      • Restricted Times
      • Pushcart Design
      • Insurance Requirements

Unable to benchmark off of other locations that have an ordinance that addresses peddling. Timbo felt it was easier to modify our existing ordinance. Vendor will need to meet the conditions stated in the ordinance to get an annual permit. They will be permitted to operate Easter through October from 10:00am to 6:00pm. That gives them the option to be out there when it makes business sense to be on the beach strand. Our Town attorney will review the submitted ordinance for consideration. Plan is for final version of ordinance will be submitted for approval by the Board at the next meeting.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


9. Discussion and Possible Action on Status Update for Wetland Delineation of Marsh and 800 Block Lots – Inspections Director Evans

Agenda Packet – background information was not provided

Previously reported – June 2022
Discussion and Possible Action on Status Update for Wetland Delineation of Marsh and 800 Block Lots – Commissioner Murdock
Commissioner Kwiatkowski handled this in Brian’s absence. They would like to provide parking in these areas wherever possible. Delineation was approved without a site visit, so we can proceed with site planning only. USACE/CAMA determination required before we can actually proceed to put parking there. Timbo described where we could possibly have parking, a number of these locations will require having bulkheads. Pat asked, how many parking spaces could we get? He said that he will need to go back and redo analysis to make a determination. He will bring information back to the next BOC’s meeting for the number of parking spaces, only in the areas closest to beach accesses

Previously reported – April 2022
Draft has been prepared, USACE is here, and we are waiting their determination.

Previously reported – March 2022
Per the Board’s direction the wetland delineation is underway, clearing parcels as needed for the surveyors.

Previously reported – February 2022
They have ordered an engineer to delineate the wetland areas, work is to be completed in the next two (2) weeks

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

Update –
We delineated all town property bordering marsh areas that is included in the parking plan. The discussion was about adding parking on marsh streets and the 800 Block lots. Results of the wetlands determination was that there are only about thirty-five (35) viable parking spots. We don’t know yet if they will be allowed to be permitted.


10. Discussion and Possible Approval of Resolution 22-07, Resolution of Intent to Permanently Close a Portion of Carolina Avenue – Town Clerk Finnell

Agenda Packet – pages 43 – 48

At the May 17th meeting, the Board instructed staff to move forward with the process to close a portion of Carolina Avenue between Quinton Street and Jordan Boulevard. A survey for the area has been completed. The metes and bounds description has been added to the draft resolution of intent presented at the May meeting (Attachment 1).

Staff is proposing that the required public hearing be held at the September 20, 2022 meeting. This will allow staff time to advertise the public hearing for four successive weeks, post the property and mail any required notices required per North Carolina Statute §160A-299. Attached is the summary of the process that was presented at the May meeting (Attachment 2).

If the Board would like to move forward with the closure of Carolina Avenue between Quinton Street and Jordan Boulevard, the suggested motion is to approve Resolution 22-07, Resolution of Intent to Permanently Close a Portion of Carolina Avenue and schedule the public hearing for September 20, 2022 at 5:00 p.m.

RESOLUTION 22-07
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Holden Beach Board of Commissioners, as follows:

Section 1. It is the intent of the Holden Beach Board of Commissioners to permanently close a portion of Carolina Avenue from its intersection with Jordan Boulevard to its intersection with Quinton Street (See Attached Exhibit A for Legal Description). Said street is located within the corporate limits of the Town of Holden Beach, North Carolina.

Section 2. A public hearing on the matter of the above-described proposed permanent closure of the described portion of Carolina Avenue is hereby called and is to be held at the regular meeting of the Holden Beach Board of Commissioners on September 20, 2022 at 5:00 p.m. in the Holden Beach Town Hall Public Assembly, 110 Rothschild Street, Holden Beach, NC 28462. At said public hearing, any person may be heard on the question of whether or not the intended closing of the specified portion of Carolina Avenue would be detrimental to the public interest or the property rights of any individual.

§ 160A-299. Procedure for permanently closing streets and alleys.
(a) When a city proposes to permanently close any street or public alley, the council shall first adopt a resolution declaring its intent to close the street or alley and calling a public hearing on the question. The resolution shall be published once a week for four successive weeks prior to the hearing, a copy thereof shall be sent by registered or certified mail to all owners of property adjoining the street or alley as shown on the county tax records, and a notice of the closing and public hearing shall be prominently posted in at least two places along the street or alley. At the hearing, any person may be heard on the question of whether or not the closing would be detrimental to the public interest, or the property rights of any individual. If it appears to the satisfaction of the council after the hearing that closing the street or alley is not contrary to the public interest, and that no individual owning property in the vicinity of the street or alley or in the subdivision in which it is located would thereby be deprived of reasonable means of ingress and egress to his property, the council may adopt an order closing the street or alley. A certified copy of the order (or judgment of the court) shall be filed in the office of the register of deeds of the county in which the street, or any portion thereof, is located. Upon the closing of a street or alley in accordance with this section, subject to the provisions of subsection (f) of this section, all right, title, and interest in the right-of-way shall be conclusively presumed to be vested in those persons owning lots or parcels of land adjacent to the street or alley, and the title of such adjoining landowners, for the width of the abutting land owned by them, shall extend to the centerline of the street or alley.

Previously reported – May 2022
Discussion and Provision of Staff Direction Concerning the Closure of a Portion of Carolina Avenue (Between Jordan Boulevard and Quinton Street) and Related Block Q Site Development Actions – Town Manager Hewett

North Carolina Statute §160A-299, lays out the process to permanently close a street/alley. Attached is a summary of the process (Attachment 1).

A draft resolution of intent is included for your review (Attachment 2). In order for the Board to adopt the resolution of intent to close Carolina Avenue from its intersection with Jordan Boulevard to its intersection with Quinton Street, it would require a property survey of the specific road area proposed to be closed to obtain a metes and bounds description.

Staff seeks direction on if the Board would like to move forward with the process to close a portion of Carolina Avenue and on related Block Q site development actions.

The intent is to close Carolina Avenue from its intersection with Jordan Boulevard to its intersection with Quinton Street. David provided a draft of a proposed Resolution that will have to be adopted by the Board in order to proceed. A Public Hearing will also be required to move forward. He outlined the steps necessary to make this happen. Motion was made to move forward with the process as outlined.

Update –
NCGS 160A-299 state the Protocols for Permanently Closing Streets. The Resolution adopted by the Board is necessary in order to proceed. A Public Hearing is required to move forward and was scheduled.

A decision was made – Approved unanimously


  • 11. Discussion and Possible Action on Statements of Qualifications Received for Block Q and the Pier Properties – Town Manager Hewett

Agenda Packet – page 49, plus separate packets

Separate RFQs to provide comprehensive Engineering and Architectural services for the development/redevelopment of the Block Q and the Pier properties were advertised in June. McGill and Associates was the only firm that submitted responses. (Atch 1 & 2). Should the Board desire to utilize McGill for the Pier and/or Block Q project(s) it would need to direct staff to have contract proposal(s) prepared for consideration/approval.

RFQ Response – Pier

RFQ Response – Block Q

Update –
The Board was not comfortable with having only one response. They gave direction to the Town Manager to reach out and attempt to get more responses.


  • 12. Discussion of Post & Rope Definitions and Other Considerations Related to Section 95.05 Streets Rights-of-Way and Determination of Next Steps – Commissioner Kwiatkowski

    Agenda Packet – pages 50 – 52

    Background

    At the January 2022 BOCM I objected to the proposed changes to § 95.05 STREET RIGHTS-OF-WAY for a number of reasons listed in a document included in the January meeting packet. In particular, the proposed version removed the right of property owners to post and rope within the 10 feet closest to the pavement and significantly restricted landscape options within the same area.

    While the majority of the Board agreed and did not approve changes to the existing 95.05, there was discussion about amending the current version at a near future meeting to better define what is allowable post and rope in the 1O feet nearest the pavement or roadbed.

    Issues

    In the existing ordinance, it is stated Landscaping in street rights-of-way:

    • Must not present a safety hazard;
    • Must not impede traffic;
    • Is placed at the risk of the individual; and
    • Is encouraged

    Specifically,

    ” (B) The ten feet of rights-of-way nearest the pavement or road bed shall remain clear of all items with the following exceptions:

    • Mailboxes, newspaper boxes, post and rope not to exceed 24 inches from grade.
    • Grass, an approved pervious product or vegetation not to exceed one foot in height.
    • The properties located at 1189, 1190, 1191 and 1192 Ocean Boulevard West may install or place a fence within the right-of-way.”

    There are numerous cases of posts placed right at the roadside, which are a potential hazard for drivers and bikers. Post height violations also exist. There are also various cases of “post and rope” selections that stretch the definitions of posts and rope, such as spikes and stakes, twine and chains, all that add to safety concerns.

    Given the fact there are numerous existing violations of what is currently allowed for property owners to place in the ROW adjacent to their property, as well as continuing addition of post and rope and landscape plants within the ROW not in compliance with the existing ordinance, I believe both post and rope and landscape need to be addressed. Setting a minimum for how far off the road edge post and rope should be placed and defining allowable post and rope selections could alleviate safety concerns. The need for better post visibility has also been raised and should be included in discussion (consideration of height, night visibility). Also, as the Town looked at paid parking possibilities for side street ROWs, it was identified that a 25 ft no parking restriction at intersections was not adequate to allow fire trucks unimpeded entry to the street in case of a fire emergency, so I also propose we consider whether there need to be additional restrictions in the 40 foot no parking areas at intersections.

    Some Comparative Data

    While looking at how municipalities throughout the country “manage” the ROW, one example that seems pragmatic segments the ROW into the first 3 feet from the road and then the next 3 feet and also addresses visibility at intersections which are included only as FYI (see table below with comparison to HB regulation).

    Possible Changes to Town Regulations for Discussion, Decision

    Language to differentiate driveway vs ROW?

    Post defined as 4X4 or 6X6 or between 4- and 6- inch diameter? Only wood or plastic? Posts not permanently set in ground.

    Rope is mandated, not wire or twine or chains- how define?

    P&R not allowed nearer than 3? 6? Other option? feet from road edge.

    No P&R within 10? Other option? ft of road edge in the defined no parking area at intersections (40 ft)? Same for any other obstructions?

    No P&R within 10 feet of road edge on OB?

    Post height 2? 3? ft. If 3 ft is selected, can 2 ft post height be allowed where legal 2 ft post currently exists (but must be moved back if not compliant with road setback decision)?

    Reflectors required for night visibility?

    No landscape over 6 inches nearer than 3? 6? Other option? feet from road.

    Adjust vegetation height at some point within the 10 feet nearest road? If so, at what distance from road and what height?

    No obstructions (e.g., rocks, railroad ties- to define) nearer than how many feet from road?

    No P&R or landscaping over 6 inches high to be installed within 3? Other option? feet of existing parking zone signs/no P&R or landscaping over 6 inches high to be installed that interferes with an established parking zone?

    Spikes, stakes, “posts” not of approved materials or posts less than 2 ft high within 10 ft of the road edge to be removed within 30? Other option? days. Otherwise, 180 days to come into compliance?

    Any others?

    As for all ordinance considerations, is important any definitions and conditions are clear to help owners avoid inadvertent errors and enable enforcement.

    Previously reported – April 2018
    Parking for Implementation Prior to the 2018 Beach Season – Commissioner Butler
    Revise the Town Ordinance 95.05 to accommodate the recommendation for property owners to have an option to preserve their landscaping and irrigation systems by installing a post and rope in the right­ of-way not to exceed 24″ in grade.

    This came out of the parking committee. At the time, the original intent was to eliminate all right-of-way parking. However, not allowing any parking in the rights-of-way creates its own set of problems. Instead of outright banning parking in the rights-of-way they gave the property owner an option to use post and rope. This was a reasonable accommodation to prevent parking on your property.

    Previously reported – June 2021
    Discussion and Possible Action on Holden Beach Code of Ordinances, Section §95.05, Street Rights-of-Way – Mayor Pro Tem Brown

    Agenda Packet –

    §95.05 STREET RIGHTS-OF-WAY.

    (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. (Question: So why hasn’t he enforced any ordinance noncompliance?) Commissioner Sullivan & Kwiatkowski explained how we came to have an ordinance that allowed post and rope in their rights-of-way, it was an accommodation and it achieved what the majority of our residents wanted. Commissioner Murdock said that the property owners do not want people parking in their yard, we need to eliminate parking in the rights-of-way. We need to find a solution to the parking problem, an alternative to rights-of-way parking by providing a reasonable number of parking spots. They decided to wait and see what the Parking Committee presents as their recommendations to the Board. In the meantime, noncompliance can be dealt with on a regularity basis. No decision to change the ordinance was made so the ordinance will remain in effect as currently written.

    No decision was made – No action taken

    I personally object to parking in the rights-of-way, but the post and rope solution was what was offered as a meet them halfway compromise. Just so you know, the public can legally park their vehicles in the rights-of-way excluding regulated areas listed in the ordinance. So let me get this straight, you spend big bucks to landscape your property and put in an irrigation system, but the public can park on your property trashing your landscaping and irrigation system. In what universe does this make any sense?

    Instead of eliminating this option maybe we should try getting compliance with the ordinance first.

    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

    Eliminating the post and rope option does not mean eliminating them from properties that are currently in compliance with the ordinance since it is my understanding that they would be grandfathered in

    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
    One year 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 

  • Update –
    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. Town Manager will get feedback from the League of Municipality before they proceed.


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

    Agenda Packet – pages 53 – 56

    Interviews for people interested in serving on various Town boards are scheduled for July 19th 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 two vacancies.

    Planning & Zoning Board: There are two alternate member terms and one regular member term expiring. Alternate members John Cain and Mark Francis are eligible and willing to serve another term . One of them could be moved to a regular member position if the Board desires.

    Board of Adjustment: Regular member, Richard Griffin’s term is expiring. He is eligible and willing to serve another term. There is also a vacant alternate position.

    Ballots will be supplied at the meeting if the Board desires to vote by ballot.

    §155.11 MEMBERSHIP AND VACANCIES
    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.

    Previously reported – June 2022
    Discussion and Possible Setting of Date to Hold Interviews for Vacancies on Town Boards – Town Clerk Finnell
    There are terms expiring on Town boards in July. I recommend the Board hold interviews on Tuesday, July 19th at 4:45 p.m. for people interested in filling vacant terms.

     Agreed to hold interviews to fill vacancies before the next BOC’s Regular July meeting

    Volunteers Needed
    The Town has vacancies on the Board of Adjustment, Planning & Zoning Board, and the Parks & Recreation Advisory Board. Interviews for the vacancies will be held on Tuesday, July 19th 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 heather@hbtownhall.com or dropped off at Town Hall.

    Update –
    The Board voted by ballot and selected the following candidates to fill the vacancies.

    Parks & Recreation
    Keith Smith
    Peggy Schiavone

    Planning & Zoning
    John Cain
    Mark Francis / alternate
    Aldo Rovito / alternate

    Board of Adjustment
    Richard Griffin
    Rick McInturf / alternate
    Gerald Arnold / alternate


    14. Discussion and Possible Action on Monthly Financial Report Content – Commissioner Kwiatkowski

    Agenda Packet – pages 57

    The monthly financial report provides revenues and expenditures data in comparison to the current revenue and appropriations estimates. It is also important to compare the current status compared to the original estimates established in the budget ordinance. A column for the Budget Ordinance estimated values should be added to the Statement of Actual & Estimated Revenue and Statement of Expenditures, Encumbrances & Appropriations monthly reports.

    As we are at the start of the pier property project, the level of detail for financial reports needs to be established. Line items should exist for major expenditures such as engineering costs, building renovation, pier renovation, beach access construction, insurance, maintenance, etc.. The Board should consult with the Finance Officer and agree the appropriate level of detail by the end of September.

    Update –
    These are two (2) separate issues. The first one is a request to the Finance Officer to provide additional information to the Board. The second one asked the town staff to get back to them with what the appropriate level of detail on the pier property should be.


    15. Town Manager’s Report


FEMA storm damage repair project
Rolled over the special obligation bond of $4.28M
We will incur interest payment charges of $617K
Eligibility for reimbursement has not been determined yet

 Previously reported – June 2022
Central Reach Project 2 , beach strand construction activities are completed
Anticipate final inspection by end of July

Roadway
Paving has been completed, just waiting for the final inspection
Anticipates that the property owner assessments will be about $2,800 per 50’ lot
The formal steps to assess these properties has started
Protocols will take several months
This will impact General Fund Balance available

Previously reported – June 2022
Drainage pipes in, grade set, base course laid, blacktop paving should be done soon

Previously reported – May 2022
Seagull Street is having grade stakes set, he expects paving to start this week or next.
David anticipates paving will be completed before Memorial Day.

Personnel
Manning, recruitment, and retention continue to be challenging for the Town staff
Of the twenty-nine (29) full time positions only twenty-four (24) of those are filled
Currently have five (5) vacant positions, staffing level is only at 82% 

Parking Revenue
Recently received enabling legislation that amends the rules which will allow us to use proceeds for any public purpose we want

GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF NORTH CAROLINA
SESSION 2021 / SESSION LAW 2022-38
HOUSE BILL 1035
AN ACT AUTHORIZING THE TOWN OF HOLDEN BEACH TO USE PROCEEDS FROM ON-STREET PARKING METERS IN THE SAME MANNER AS PROCEEDS FROM OFF-STREET PARKING FACILITIES.

The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:

SECTION 1. Section 2(b) of S.L. 2021-46 reads as rewritten:
“SECTION 2.(b) This section applies to the Town Towns of Holden Beach and Surf City only.”

SECTION 2. This act is effective when it becomes law.
In the General Assembly read three times and ratified this the 1st day of July, 2022.

Lift Station #1
Performance is giving us cause of concern, we will need to go in upgrade mode
They don’t feel that it will last three (3) more years as planned
It is not in our Capital Plan and has not raised to level of discussion yet
Staff will bring forward suggestions for the Board to consider a Capital Plan

Local Government Commission
They have modified debt issuance calendar which will accelerate the audit schedule
We will not be in a position to borrow any funds until after the new year


  • In Case You Missed It –


.
Shark fishing tournament
reels in big concerns

 


After intense pressure by leaders of four beach communities, organizers of a shore-based shark fishing tournament have agreed to shift the event from mid-summer to October, along with making other concessions for swimmer safety. The Southport-based Madkingz Tackle fishing store-sponsored event will now be the first week of October, instead of July 15-22 as previously announced, said owner Marty Wright. At first, the event was to include shore-based anglers who could fish anytime for sharks from the eastern tip of Oak Island (Caswell Beach) to Ocean Isle Beach. Participants would have been allowed to chum for sharks using kayaks up to a mile offshore. Chumming is a practice that usually involves putting blood, internal organs and fish parts in the water to attract sharks. It is prohibited on Oak Island Pier year-round. The plan churned a tempest of controversy and rebukes from leaders of Oak Island, Ocean Isle, Holden, and Caswell beaches, who said that intentionally attracting sharks to the shore during the height of the tourist season would be unwise. “It’s idiotic to put shark bait in with our swimmers at the busiest time of the year,” said Holden Beach Mayor Alan Holden, who has worked as a commercial fisherman, charter boat captain, 100-ton certified ship captain and been an avid recreational angler for 70 years. His town was considering seeking a court injunction before tournament plans changed. Caswell Beach and at least two other towns sent letters of protest to the sponsor. “Given the fact that the intent of this activity is to bring predators closer to the shore, The Town of Caswell Beach cannot condone a tournament such as this because of the unnecessary increase in danger to swimmers,” town officials wrote in a July 8 letter. The town asked for the shark tournament to be cancelled and threatened legal action if that didn’t happen. “The right to harvest fish is a strong right and it’s well-protected,” said Oak Island Mayor Liz White. “We have no intent to infringe on people and we have a lot of people who fish here year-round.” White added, however, that she believed the type of tournament first suggested “puts public safety in jeopardy.” Ocean Isle Mayor Debbie Smith called the original event “not the thing to do in the surf in the middle of summer.” Tournament sponsor Wright said that after a respectful call from White, he agreed to modify the tournament. The new rules are that land-based shark anglers must fish only at night, during the first week of October. The tournament is catch-and-release only and no chumming is allowed, Wright said. Participants will take pictures of landed sharks with tape measures and use a digital security device to ensure the shots are during specified times. “It’s not going to make a difference, but it’s about perception,” stated Wright, who resides at Oak Island and said he’d been fishing in the Cape Fear region for at least a dozen years.

Read more » click here

New trial date scheduled for Town of Holden Beach and man who planned shore-based shark tournament
WWAY has learned more about the documents filed against the man who planned a shark fishing tournament earlier this month in Brunswick County. A temporary restraining order filed July 13th by the Town of Holden Beach against the owner of Madkingz Tackle Marty Wright who also sponsored the controversial shark fishing tournament, was extended until July 23. According to court documents, both parties agreed the land-based shark tournament would be canceled. Leaders from Oak Island, Ocean Isle, and Both Holden and Caswell Beaches were concerned the tournament would be bad for business and create an unneeded danger in the water. WWAY reached out to the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries and talked to their spokeswoman Patricia Smith who said these types of tournaments are allowed, but with rules. “We do not prohibit shark fishing from our state’s beaches, there is a state tournament license that exists but that’s only required if you’re going to sell your catch,” said Smith. Those who plan on making a profit can obtain a license through the Division of Marine Fisheries License Offices. “There are some tournaments that fish are brought in to sell to a dealer, obviously all the fishermen will need to have a Coastal Recreational fishing license,” she said. These regulations apply to those 16 years of age or older who need to keep in mind the size and possession limits on different species of sharks in North Carolina waters. “So, any fishermen planning on going shark fishing would need to come on to our website and download a copy of those regulations,” said Smith. Court documents show a new trial is scheduled for July 26, WWAY reached out to both Holden Beach Mayor Alan Holden and Marty Wright, both said they would not comment at this time. Wright planned another shore-based shark fishing tournament for the first week of October. The rules and regulations surrounding fishing tournaments can be found by clicking here. The regulations can be found on the Division of Marine Fisheries website Proclamation FF-41-2022, or anglers can download the Fish Rules App. These licenses are sold at Division of Marine Fisheries License Offices, online at https://www.ncwildlife.org/, and at many outdoors and bait and tackle shops. N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries does not prohibit chum fishing.
Read more » click here 


Pets
Effective May 20th – September 20th, pets are not allowed on the beach strand between the hours of 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Please remember that any time your dog is off your premise, they must be under control of a reasonable person either by a leash, cord or chain at all times. Also, dog owners shall remove dog waste immediately after it is deposited by the dog when on public property, public park property, public right-of-way property or any private property, including vacant lots, without the permission of the private property owner. Dog waste stations are conveniently located throughout the island.


Holden Beach Pier
The Town has completed the transaction to acquire the pier properties at 441 Ocean Boulevard West. The pier and adjacent buildings are closed until further notice. The parking lot and beach access on the east side of the pier will remain open and are free for public use at this time. It is anticipated that parking fees will be charged for the pier lot starting May 1st.


  • Paid Parking on Holden Beach
    Paid parking will be implemented in the Town of Holden Beach on May 1, 2022 for all Holden Beach designated parking areas. It will be enforced from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. daily, with free parking before and after that time. All parking will use license plates for verification.

    Holden Beach will use the “SurfCAST by Otto” parking solution. This mobile app for Apple and Android mobile devices is NOW LIVE. You will also be able to purchase passes by scanning the QR-codes located on the parking signs for access to https://surfcast.ottoconnect.us/pay.

    Passes CANNOT be purchased by contacting Town Hall.

    Parking rates for a single vehicle in all designated areas will be:
    $3 per hour for up to four hours
    $15 per day and for any duration greater than four hours
    $60 per week (seven consecutive days)

    Annual Passes
    $125 per calendar year for a single vehicle

    Handicap parking is free in designated handicap spaces and only with a valid license plate or hangtag.

    Parking rates can be paid via credit card, debit card or PayPal.

    Visit https://hbtownhall.com/paid-parking for more information and to view a table with authorized parking areas.


Upcoming Events –

National Park & Recreation Month
Join us in celebrating National Park and Recreation Month with some special activities highlighting all that Holden Beach has to offer. Participants in each activity will be entered into a drawing for a chance to win fun prizes. 

Holden Beach BINGO
Embark on an adventure around the island with our special Holden Beach bingo sheets. To participate, complete activities on the sheet to try to get a bingo and be sure to take a picture of each activity. Once you get a bingo, send your completed bingo sheet as well as your photos of each activity to Christy.Ferguson@hbtownhall.com. Submissions are due by Thursday, July 28th to be entered into the prize drawing taking place on Friday, July 29th.  

Photo Contest
Help us capture the beauty of our local parks by entering our photo contest. To participate, take a picture of your favorite park and send it to Christy.Ferguson@hbtownhall.com. Please submit your photos by Thursday July 28th and a 
winner for the best photo will be chosen on Friday July 29th. 


  • 16. Executive Session Pursuant to North Carolina General Statute 143-318.11(A)(3), To Consult with the Town Attorney – Town Manager Hewett

    Item was added to the agenda

    No decision was made – No action taken


    General Comments –


Holden Beach Commissioner Gerald Brown passes away
Holden Beach Town Commissioner Gerald Brown has passed away after battling health issues for the past several weeks, according to Mayor J. Alan Holden. Holden said Brown passed away in the hospital on Sunday. Brown was elected as Town Commissioner in November 2019. He served as Mayor Pro Tem after taking office. Holden said he hoped to have additional details on services for Brown in the next couple of days. According to the mayor, the Board of Commissioners will appoint a replacement to serve the remainder of Brown’s current term, which ends in December 2023. Holden said he did not know when that selection would take place.



BOC’s Meeting

The Board of Commissioners’ next Regular Meeting is scheduled on the third Tuesday of the month, August 16th
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