OBAR Legislative Briefing

April 23, 2015 Legislative Briefing

N.C. Coastal Resources Commission Meets Next Week in Manteo
The NC Coastal Resources Commission (CRC) will discuss sea-level rise, oceanfront setbacks and sandbag use, among other issues, at their two-day meeting next week.
CRC meetings are typically held further south in Pine Knoll Shores but next week’s two-day meeting is being held in Dare County. The meeting will be start at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, April 29th and at 9 a.m. on Thursday, April 30 and will be held at the Dare County Government Complex in Manteo. The meeting is open to the public.
Items on the CRC’s agenda include:
• Sea-Level Rise Report Update – Science Panel Chair Dr. Margery Overton will update the Commission on the 2015 sea-level rise draft report.
• Public Comment on Sea-Level Rise Report 2015 Update – Members of the public may comment on the Science Panel’s draft Sea-Level Rise Report at 4:15 p.m. Wednesday.
• Overview of Public Trust Doctrine – Dr. Dave Owens, UNC School of Government, will give an overview of Public Trust Law in North Carolina, and Division of Coastal Management counsel
Christine Goebel will review relevant North Carolina case law.
• CRC Rule Development – The commission will consider draft rule language for alternatives to its current static vegetation line rules, and draft rule language related to development of a State Ports Inlet Management Area of Environmental Concern. The CRC will also consider adoption of amendments to 15A NCAC 7H .1500 GP for Excavation of Upland Basins, which would streamline permits associated with upland boat basins.
• Static Line Exception Reauthorizations – The CRC will consider requests to reauthorize the existing static line exceptions for the towns of Atlantic Beach, Pine Knoll Shores, Indian Beach and Emerald Isle.
• Sandbag Use – Coastal Management staff will discuss the use of sandbags as they relate to beach fill projects, and the potential use of geo-textile sandbags for temporary erosion control on the oceanfront.
• Variances – The CRC will hear two requests for variances from its rules.
• Public Hearing – Members of the public may comment on proposed amendments to 15A NCAC 7H .0304 AECs within Ocean Hazard Areas, which would eliminate the High Hazard Flood Area of Environmental Concern.
• Public Input and Comment – Members of the public may comment on CRC issues at 11:45 a.m. Thursday.
The Coastal Resources Advisory Council (CRAC) will meet at 9 a.m., April 29th at the Dare County Government Complex.
A full meeting agenda is posted on the N.C. Division of Coastal Management’s website at www.nccoastalmanagement.net.

NC DCM – Public Hearings on High Flood Hazards Area of Environmental Concern
The NC Division of Coastal Management will hold public hearings in each of North Carolina’s oceanfront counties to gather comments on a proposal to repeal the High Hazard Flood Area of Environmental Concern, or AEC. The hearings are scheduled locally for the following dates and locations:
• April 28, 5 p.m. – Corolla Public Library, 1123 Ocean Trail, Corolla
• April 30, 1:15 p.m. – Dare County Administration Bldg., Board of Commissioners Meeting Room, 954 Marshall C. Collins Dr., Manteo
• May 19, 1 p.m. – Ocracoke Volunteer Fire Department, 822 Irvin Garrish Hwy, Ocracoke
The High Hazard Flood AEC covers lands subject to flooding, high waves, and heavy water currents during a major storm. These are the lands identified as coastal flood with velocity hazard, or “V zones,” on flood insurance rate maps prepared by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Single-family residences located in the AEC are currently exempted from Coastal Area Management Act permit requirements provided that they are not also located within another AEC, are constructed on pilings, and comply with both the N.C. building code and national and local flood damage prevention ordinances. Property owners in this AEC are required to sign a “hazard notice” acknowledging that special risks are associated with development in the area, and pay a $50 fee for an exemption letter.
The N.C. Coastal Resources Commission is proposing to repeal the High Hazard Flood AEC because its current rules parallel the N.C. building code and national and local flood prevention standards, making the CRC standards no longer necessary.
The High Hazard Flood AEC is part of the state’s Ocean Hazard System. Areas of environmental concern are designated by the commission and are defined by the Coastal Area Management Act as areas of natural importance that may be susceptible to erosion or flooding; or may have environmental, social, economic, or aesthetic values that make it valuable to the state. The CRC classifies areas as AECs to protect them from incompatible development that may cause irreversible damage to property, public health, or the environment. AECs cover almost all coastal waters and about three percent of the land in the 20 coastal counties.

Kill Devil Hills to Hold Public Forum – Discuss Beach Driving Permit Partnership
The Board of Commissioners will hold a Public Forum on Wednesday, April 29th at 5:30 p.m. in place of its regularly scheduled meeting. The public is invited to attend and provide input to the Board on any matter of interest and concern, including proposed changes to beach driving regulations.
The Town has discussed entering into a reciprocal agreement on beach driving permits with the Town of Nags Head. If approved, Nags Head beach driving permits would be recognized in Kill Devil Hills and vice versa. KDH residents would also be able to purchase a beach driving permit at Nags Head tackle shops.
A link to the proposed beach driving permit changes: http://www.kdhnc.com/DocumentCenter/View/6823

Town/County Updates
Kill Devil Hills –
Next Week: The Board of Commissioners will hold a public hearing on Monday, April 13th at 5:30 p.m. on the proposed beach nourishment Municipal Service District.

Nags Head
The Board of Commissioners will hold three public hearings at their Wednesday, May 6th meeting:
• Consideration of a zoning text amendment application submitted by April Vaughan on behalf of Whalebone Surf Shop to permit multiple principal uses within one commercial building;
• Consideration of text amendments pertaining to unmanned aircraft systems (drones);
• Consideration of a zoning text amendment to add a new use, Airboat rental passenger operation, as a Conditional Use within the Commercial-Outdoor Recreation Overlay District.

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