Legislative Briefing ~ 8.1.17

Legislative Briefing ~ 8.1.17

Hatteras Power Outage Update – From Dare County

Cape Hatteras Electric Cooperative (CHEC) continues execution of two simultaneous solutions to restore transmission service to Hatteras and Ocracoke Islands. The progress made to each of these solutions narrows the timeframe for complete transmission restoration for Hatteras Island to 6 – 10 days.

Evacuation for all visitors to Hatteras Island remains in effect until adequate and reliable power service is available to meet the demand. County officials will continue to closely monitor the progress of restoration efforts so that visitors can be allowed reentry to the island as soon as possible. For updated information from CHEC regarding power restoration, visit their website or Facebook page.

Currently, Essential Personnel (Priority One), Permanent Residents & Essential Personnel for Critical Businesses (Priority Two), and Non-Resident Property Owners & Non-Resident Employees of Non-Critical Businesses (Priority Three) are allowed access to Hatteras Island with proper reentry credentials. Details regarding reentry procedures are available at darenc.com/reentry. As you approach the checkpoint north of the Bonner Bridge, please have your license, reentry pass, or tax bill readily available.

For those on Hatteras Island, it is important to remember that mandatory power and water conservation measures remain in effect. All Cape Hatteras Electric Cooperative (CHEC) customers must remove air conditioning systems and hot tub heaters from the power grid by turning off system circuit breakers. In addition, mandatory water restrictions are in place prohibiting the filling of pools or hot tubs, the watering of lawns, and the watering of driveways or sidewalks for cleaning.

NC Governor Roy Cooper visited the area on Monday and held a press conference on the situation. (Watch the video)

For any updates regarding the mandatory evacuation for Hatteras Island, visit www.darenc.com. Text “join hatteraspower” to 30890 to receive text message alerts.

Flood Insurance Legislation Update

HR 2874 – 21st Century Flood Reform Act, a comprehensive flood reform package, recent passed the House Financial Services Committee. With the looming expiration of the National Flood Insurance Program the end of September, Congress has been busy marking up over 9 bills that would reauthorize the program and further change the rating process, assessment fees and other charges to further shore up the program and address the $25 billion program debt.
Amendments were made to HR 2874 last week that would preserve grandfathering and would continue to allow NFIP coverage for future development in special flood hazard areas which was a huge win for the National Association of Realtors®, the National Association of Home Builders and the Louisiana based Coalition for Sustainable Flood Insurance. However, while all were touting the success of getting the amendments made, other concerns were raised regarding provisions of the bill that will likely cause rates to soar for the NFIP’s five million policyholders as they did after the passage of Biggert-Waters in 2012. OBHBA and OBAR expressed concerns to Congressman Walter Jones about other possible unintended consequences with the bill’s possible passage. Congressman Jones was very receptive and has communicated those concerns to his colleagues overseeing the movement of the flood reform package.
One earlier overlooked provision of the bill will cause any policyholder filing a second claim to have their structure classified as a repetitive loss and thus a multiple loss property which would cause the policyholder to lose their grandfathered BFE/zone status. They would then be re-rated based on the current flood map and increases would be phased in until the current rate was reached.
Another provision would give FEMA the authority, within two years to rate inland structures different than coastal properties. This sounds good to someone unfamiliar with the rating process but all NFIP covered structures are already rated based on location due to the difference in modeling inland/riverine risk versus coastal risk in the development of flood maps. The maps identify the risk based on the modeled base flood elevation and zone a property is located.

There are other concerns and there will be more to come in the coming weeks on the reauthorization or an extension plan of the program.

Kitty Hawk/Southern Shores Beach Nourishment – Meeting this Wednesday

After returning from Norfolk, the dredge resumed pumping operations in Kitty Hawk on Monday evening. They are currently pumping northward towards Southern Shores and are approximately 400 feet south of the Kitty Hawk Pier. Once Southern Shores is complete, they plan to flip and begin pumping south towards Byrd Street. The current construction area is the south side of Kitty Hawk Pier to approximately 5309 N. Virginia Dare Trail.

A public meeting with project representatives will be held on Wednesday, August 2nd at 1 p.m. in Southern Shores at the Pitt’s Center located at 5377 N. Virginia Dare Trail. Representatives will be on hand to answer questions about the project.

Town/County Updates

Dare County – Beach Nourishment – The latest video update on beach nourishment (July 21st).

Currituck -Just an FYI – The July 4th fireworks show that was cancelled due to weather has been rescheduled for Wednesday, August 9 in Historic Corolla Park.

Duck -This Wednesday at 7 p.m., Council will conduct public hearings to consider the following Zoning Text Amendment and Conditional Use Permit applications:
• A proposal to amend the Town’s Zoning Ordinance by correcting and updating several sections of the Zoning Ordinance: (1) remove an incorrect reference to the minimum size of parking spaces in Section 156.002; (2) update the process for interpreting the location of zoning district boundaries Subsection 156.026(F); and (3) address a loophole regarding exemptions for walkways from minimum setback requirements Section 156.051(F).; and
• Application for four conditional use permits associated with the redevelopment of the Nor’Banks Watersports property at 1314 Duck Road: (1) to construct a commercial structure greater than 5,000 square feet, but less than 10,000 square feet; (2) to add a restaurant (eating establishment); (3) to alter the layout of the existing sailing and watersports business (boat launching and rental facilities); and (4) approve the Village Commercial Development Option to allow gravel parking and bring existing parking encroachments into compliance.
You may contact Director of Community Development Joe Heard for more information about these proposals at 252-255-1234 or jheard@townofduck.com.

Southern Shores – Town Council meets on Tuesday, August 1st and on the Agenda is continued discussion with the Town Attorney to consider Town Code Options regarding accessory structures with living space.
The Planning Board will hold a Special Meeting on August 7th at 5:30 p.m. in the Pitts Center to continue discussion of Module One of the Town Code Update Project. Module One, in addition to other Town Code Update Project information, can be found on the Town website. For additional information or questions, please contact Town Hall at (252) 261-2394 or email whaskett@southernshores-nc.gov.

Nags Head – The August 2nd Board of Commissioners meeting will be held at the Douglas Remaley Fire Station at 9 a.m. The Board will hold the following public hearings to consider:
-A zoning ordinance text amendment to allow accessory commercial piers with transient boat slips in Commercial Outdoor Recreation Overlay District.
-The adoption of resolutions authorizing the Town to enter into an Installment Purchase Contract, in an amount not to exceed $499,000, to finance the cost of the Bonnett Street Beach Bathhouse construction; Consideration of construction contract.

In the News

OBX Blackout; 1 of 2 Cables Fixed
Steel casing was being set aside when it cut power to Hatteras
Permanent power fix for Hatteras could take one to two weeks
Is the ‘Shelly Island’ sandbar starting to connect to Cape Point?
An unsavory summer recipe: How to make an algal bloom

Upcoming Meetings

Tuesday, August 1
5:30 p.m. – Southern Shores Town Council

Wednesday, August 2
9:00 a.m. – Nags Head Board of Commissioners
7:00 p.m. – Duck Town Council

Monday, August 7
9:00 a.m. – Dare Board of Commissioners
5:30 p.m. – Southern Shores Special Planning Board Meeting
6:00 p.m. – Kitty Hawk Town Council
7:00 p.m. – Currituck Board of Commissioners

Tuesday, August 8
7:00 p.m. – Currituck Planning Board

Advocacy, Legislative Briefing