Legislative Briefing ~ 6.13.17

Legislative Briefing ~ 6.13.17

Dare County Septic Permitting Changes – Update

OBHBA Legislative Committee members have been working with the NC Home Builders Association to see what can be done legislatively to address the impact of a recent State Health Department septic permitting audit of Dare County.

Permitting process changes that went into effect May 1, 2017, due to interpretation – not because of rule changes – have negatively affected the sale of a few homes and potential redevelopment projects. The audit results came as a surprise to County officials because it has been business as usual in septic permitting for the past thirty years; the County had not changed the manner in which they had always permitted septic systems. The state’s septic permitting program polices and rules fall under a “one-size fits all” approach and does not take into consideration the various soil compositions throughout NC, especially in coastal communities. There is also some hypocrisy when it comes to installation versus failure of systems. Dare County’s Environmental Health Supervisor has the authority to use his best professional judgment when a system fails, but if his best professional judgment conflicts with state rules (as is now the case) in the installation/expansion of a system, then it is not allowed.

While septic systems do fail, the large majority of failures in Dare County are due to the age of the system or tree roots affecting the system. With the NC General Assembly close to approving a budget, time is of the essence for language to be added to a bill and passed prior to the end of session.

Beach Nourishment Project Update – KDH to See Dredge Sooner than Expected

To maximize cost savings and take advantage of project flexibility, Great Lakes Dock and Dredge (GLDD), will begin nourishment dredging in Kill Devil Hills in late June or early July, much sooner than originally anticipated. Completion of the Kill Devil Hills project is now anticipated to be in mid-August. Contractors will begin mobilizing equipment immediately to prepare for dredging anticipated to begin in the coming weeks. The company intends on landing a subline, which is a large steel pipe that leads out to the dredge from onshore, in Kill Devil Hills sometime early next week. The Helga Street beach access remains GLDD’s staging site for the Kill Devil Hills’ project. The Town of Kill Devil Hills will continue to provide up-to-date nourishment project reports on the More Beach to Love website.

MARK YOUR CALENDAR: Colington Road Improvements – Public Meeting

Reps from N.C. Department of Transportation will hold an open format, public meeting regarding the proposed improvements to Colington Road (S.R. 1217) on June 29th from 4 – 7 p.m. at the Kill Devil Hills Town Hall – Commissioners Meeting Room, located at 102 Town Hall Drive.

Improvements proposed for Colington Road vary along the roadway. From the end of Colington Road to Colington Drive, proposed improvements are limited to repaving the road. From Colington Drive to Baum Bay Drive, Colington Road will be widened to two 11-foot travel lanes with 10-foot shoulders (7-foot paved) on each side to accommodate bicycles. In addition, the road will be raised in areas to reduce flooding. From Baum Bay Drive to Bermuda Bay Boulevard, a new multi-use path will be built on the south side of Colington Road. This multiuse path will tie into the existing path on the south side to the east of Bermuda Bay Boulevard. This section of Colington Road will also be resurfaced, but there will be no changes to the existing typical section on the north side of the road. From Bermuda Bay Boulevard to just east of Veterans Drive, proposed improvements are again limited to repaving the road. From this point to the U.S. 158 intersection, the proposed typical section on Colington Road includes 11- foot travel lanes, as well as two 11-foot left-turn lanes and an 11-foot right-turn lane eastbound at the U.S. 158 intersection. The proposed project is about 4.3 miles long. The purpose of the project is to reduce roadway flooding and improve the operation and safety of Colington Road.

The public may attend at any time during the hours mentioned above. NCDOT representatives will be available to answer questions and discuss the proposed project. Opportunities to submit written comments will be provided at the meeting.

Outer Banks Chamber of Commerce Call for Action – Support Local Commercial Fishing

The information below was shared by the Outer Banks Chamber of Commerce:
Take Action – OPPOSE House Bill 867 Coastal Fisheries Conservation and Economic Development Act of 2017 (The bill in it’s entirely can be found here).
URGENT: Our commercial fishing industry needs our help! House Bill 867 threatens to take away their ability to continue to make a living and supply us with the local seafood we all enjoy. The ripple impacts of this legislation will be felt throughout the business community, the Outer Banks and along the entire coast of North Carolina.

To ACT NOW, click this link to email the legislators responsible for its implementation and ask them to say NO to House Bill 867 today.

FYI – The Outer Banks Association of Realtors and the Outer Banks Home Builders Association have not taken a position on House Bill 867 Coastal Fisheries Conservation and Economic Development – An Act to Ensure the Economic Development of Coastal North Carolina through the Restoration and Long-Term Conservation of North Carolina’s Public, Coastal Fisheries Resources.

New Kill Devil Hills Signage Zoning Ordinance

Please check your listings within Kill Devil Hills to ensure that signage is in compliance with the below zoning ordinance. Properties not in compliance as of June 30, 2017 will have signs removed and disposed by the Town of Kill Devil Hills.

§ 153.077 SIGNS
In an effort to ensure public health and welfare and a pleasing aesthetic environment and to promote traffic safety, the town has adopted the regulations and standards contained in this section.
(C)Generally allowed (b)One lease or rent sign and one for sale sign may be used per lot, each of which shall not exceed 6 square feet plus frame. These signs shall be located at least seven feet from the street side property line and side property lines and shall be removed 14 days after the property has been sold, rented or leased. Sale or lease signs for commercial property shall be limited to 36 square feet and shall be removed 14 days after the property has been sold, rented or leased.
(J)Alteration or removal of unlawful signs (2) Any sign located within a town right-of-way shall be subject to immediate removal by the Zoning Administrator.

STREET: Any improved and permanently dedicated public right-of-way which has been accepted for maintenance by the North Carolina Department of Transportation or the town. Upon inspection these were the most common code violations found.
•More than one for lease or rent sign. (Most Cases: One on the building and one in the front yard.)
•Sign located in the public right of way. (Most cases: Sign should not be street side of telephone poles.)
Please contact Charles Thuman, Kill Devil Hills Code Enforcement Officer, with any questions at (252)449-5316.

Town/County Updates

Dare CountyBeach Nourishment – The latest video update on beach nourishment (June 9th).

Currituck – The Planning Board meets Tuesday, June 13th at 7 p.m. Members will be considering the Moyock Mega-Site, a long-term economic development plan aimed at bringing employment and commercial opportunities to Currituck over the next three decades. The Mega-Site consists of over 3,000 acres adjacent to the border with Virginia and located on the western side of North Carolina 168/Caratoke Highway in Moyock. Check out the plan here.

Kill Devil Hills – After several public comments against a zoning ordinance text amendment that would allow for an increase in height from 42 feet to 50 feet, with conditions, for hotels and motels in the Ocean Impact Residential zone, Commissioners voted unanimous against the change.

Reminder: A public hearing will be held on Wednesday, June 28th at 5:30 p.m. to consider limiting the size of single family dwellings in the Ocean Impact Residential (OIR) zone to 6,000 square feet of total enclosed habitable living space, which would include any habitable space in accessory structures. When resident Sharon Nelson presented the zoning ordinance amendment request to the Planning Board, the Planning Board recommended denial of the request.
More information on the background of the issue and the Town’s OIR zoning regulations can be found here.

Nags Head –The Town held a public hearing last week on a draft comprehensive CAMA Land Use Plan Update – referred to as FOCUS Nags Head. With so many comments made on the plan, Commissioners decided to carefully review and consider all suggestions and concerns before taking action. The CAMA Land Use Plan is used as a guide for all future planning/development decisions made within the Town. A copy of the 214-page plan can be found here (PDF).

In the News

Upcoming Meetings

Tuesday, June 13
6:00 p.m. – Manteo Planning and Zoning Board

Wednesday, June 14
6:30 p.m. – Duck Planning Board

Thursday, June 15
6:00 p.m. – Kitty Hawk Planning Board

Monday, June 19
9:00 a.m. – Dare Board of Commissioners
6:00 p.m. – Currituck Board of Commissioners

Tuesday, June 20
9:00 a.m. – Southern Shores Town Council
2:30 p.m. – Nags Head Planning Board
5:30 p.m. – Kill Devil Hills Planning Board

Wednesday, June 21
4:00 p.m. – Manteo Board of Commissioners
7:00 p.m. – Nags Head Board of Commissioners

Advocacy, Legislative Briefing