March 6 BOC Meeting Highlights
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Preliminary Flood Maps
Planning Director Donna Creef reported back to the Board with an update about the preliminary flood map process and action items that were approved by the Board on January 17. As requested, Creef has met with various groups to discuss the proposed maps and offered the Board alternatives for moving forward. Following the presentation, Commissioners agreed that they will not appeal the new maps and asked Creef to continue working with the towns to develop a community-wide CRS campaign on flood insurance and targeted map risks. The Board also requested that she move forward on development of local flood elevation for consideration by the Board as part of updates to the Flood Ordinance.
Approval to Request Hazard Mitigation Grant Funds
Planning Director Donna Creef reported that the State of North Carolina has notified the County that FEMA mitigation funds will be available as part of the Hurricane Matthew recovery funds. Commissioners authorized staff to request FEMA mitigation grant funding for elevating flood prone homes and approved the guidelines for use in the evaluation of local applications.
National Park Service Provides Off-Road Vehicle (ORV) Update
National Park Service Superintendent Dave Hallac provided an update on the Off Road Vehicle (ORV) Management plan and highlighted improvements that have been made over the last two years. Hallac reported that in 2016, the Cape Hatteras National Seashore had the highest level of visitation in 13 years and the most ORV permit sales since implementation of the program in 2012. He discussed the print- at-home permit program that was established in 2016 and said that 28% of sales last year were online. Also last year, wildlife buffers were reduced, corridors were implemented and access projects were completed. In addition, adjustments to times, dates and permit pricing have been made to allow greater access to the Cape Hatteras National Seashore.
Outer Banks Chamber of Commerce to Initiate Economic Development Plan
The Board of Commissioners voted to move forward in contracting with the Outer Banks Chamber of Commerce to implement the first Phase of the Economic Development and Diversification Plan that was presented to the Board recently by the consultants from NC State University. Karen Brown and Bob Peele, representing the Chamber of Commerce, provided a brief overview of the proposal and the Board approved the primary proposal in the amount of $25,000 per year. The County Manager, working with Commissioners Ross and Shea, will begin drafting the Memorandum of Agreement that will come back to the Board for approval.
Support for State Artificial Reef Funding
A presentation was made by Dick Parker during public comments about an application that the Oregon Inlet Artificial Reef Committee has submitted to the Marine Fisheries Commission seeking grant funding for an artificial reef off our coast that would be funded by revenues from state fishing licenses. Mr. Parker pointed out that Dare County is a leader in the state in generating fishing license; however, the state is asking for a 30% match, which is unprecedented. At the request of Vice chairman Overman, a letter will be sent to the Marine Fisheries Commission about this matter.
Dare County League of Women Voters
Dawn Kiousis and Lin Logan with the Dare County League of Women Voters made a presentation about the Equal Rights Amendment. During Commissioners business, Chairman Woodard presented a Resolution in Support of Equal Rights for Everyone and the Board voted unanimously to adopt it.
COA Hospitality Program
Tim Sweeney, Dean of the Dare County Campus of the College of the Albemarle and Clark Twiddy of the State Board of Community Colleges presented information about the emerging Hospitality Certification Program at the Dare County campus.
Resolution Supporting Multi-Use Pathways in Hatteras Village
At the request of the Hatteras Village Community Center Board of Directors, Commissioners approved an updated resolution supporting multi-use paths in Hatteras Village. The resolution asks the NC House of Representatives to set a voter referendum to change the language necessary to allow redistribution of the Community Center District’s funds to allow things reasonably necessary to enhance the Hatteras Village Community Center District, including multi-use pathways.
Recognition of John Harris
Chairman Bob Woodard recognized John Harris of Kitty Hawk Kites with a Certificate of Appreciation in recognition of his passionate efforts to keep the spirit of flight alive by teaching the world to fly. From a sandy slope at Jockey’s Ridge, Harris launched an adventure that would become Kitty Hawk Kites and under his guiding hand, generations of people have experienced the joy of flight. The Board of Commissioners commends Harris for preserving Dare County’s legacy of flight.
Next Meeting of the Board of Commissioners
The Board of Commissioners’ next meeting is scheduled for Monday, April 3 at 9:00 a.m. For more information about the Dare County Board of Commissioners, including full agenda packets and the video of entire meetings, visit darenc.com/boc.