Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Lesgisaltive Briefings - May 8, 2007

Currituck Planning Board Reviews School Capacity Allocation Formula Options; Voluntary Mitigation Fees Kitty Hawk Approves Zoning Amendment on HVAC Units

Nags Head to Hold Public Hearing to Ban Fireworks

Duck Vegetation Ordinance to be Discussed Again

Duck CAMA Permit Info

Corolla Incorporation Public Hearing Set for June 1st

Kill Devil Hills to Work on Planning and Zoning Matters at Retreat; Forum with Business Leaders May 23rd

Real Estate Industry the Focus of Segment on Sunday’s “60 Minutes”

Update on Corolla Sign Ordinance Amendment

“North Carolina Does Not Have a Revenue Problem”

OBAR General Membership Meeting to be held in Avon


May 8 – The Currituck Planning Board will meet with staff and Commissioners in the near future to review proposed changes to the County’s Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance. The Board decided more review was necessary before they could approve changing the way in which school capacity is formulated and allocated. Included in the proposed adequate facilities amendment is a voluntary mitigation fee of over $12,000 per lot when school capacity allocation is less than needed for a development project. It was brought before the Board’s attention that the County has collected over $24 million in land transfer tax in just the past four years that could be used for school construction. It was also discussed about how the allocation and fees would impact small, local building companies.

Kitty Hawk

May 7 – The Town Council approved a text amendment to permit HVAC units to encroach up to five feet into required side yard setbacks. They were currently not allowed to be located within required building setbacks. Council also approved new standards for the location of political campaign signs. Signs are now allowed to be located within public rights-of-way in certain situations.

Nags Head

The Board of Commissioners will be discussing commercial architectural regulations at their meeting this Wednesday and will be holding a public hearing to consider a town-wide ban on fireworks.

The town received a great deal of media coverage regarding the strong nor’easter that hit on Monday. Roberta Thuman, Nags Head spokeswoman, said that ocean overwash temporarily shut off water service to about 10 homes Monday and "a few septic tanks unearthed" in South Nags Head, where erosion is high. She stated, "It was not nearly as bad as we thought it would be.” Virginia news station –WVEC - featured the town during their broadcast on Tuesday and was quick to refer to the recently defeated beach nourishment referendum. Link here if you missed it: www.wvec.com/news/topstories/stories/wvec_local_050707_weather.480e2a42.html.

Duck Tree Ordinance to be Addressed Again

May 2 - The Duck Town Council will be discussing the proposed Tree and Vegetation Preservation and Planting ordinance at their meeting this coming week and will most likely be ready to schedule another public hearing on the issue for their June 6th meeting. Town Council members will review possible changes to the ordinance that include prohibiting clear-cutting and adding language to further clarify specific sections. If there are any areas of the ordinance you would like addressed, contact the Duck Community Development Department before May 16th to voice your opinion and offer suggestions. They would love to hear from you prior to June at (252) 255-1234. The ordinance can be reviewed at www.townofduck.com/agenda2007-05-16item1avegetation.htm.

Although not on this week’s agenda, just a reminder that the town is considering an Ocean and Sound Overlay District that would include prohibiting the use of any wetlands fill, over and above what CAMA would allow.

Duck CAMA Permit Info

Duck’s CAMA permit officer Sandy Cady will be out of the office through May 18th. All CAMA permit questions should be directed to Sue Cotellessa or Cory Tate; if they are unable to assist you, contact John Cece in the Elizabeth City District office at 252-264-3901. Land use, CAMA, building, and trade permit applications will be accepted and processed in Sandy’s absence; however it may be necessary to request an extension in order to process new CAMA permits. If possible, wait for Sandy’s return for new permits. Contact Lori Kopec or Cory Tate to schedule your inspections. You will need to provide the date, owner, subdivision, lot #, address, inspection type, contact person, date ready for inspection, and any notes when calling. Please note that no inspections will be scheduled for May 17th or 18th as Cory will be out of the office. Please schedule your requests accordingly.

Corolla Incorporation Public Hearing June 1st!

The Joint Legislative Commission on Municipal Incorporations, a Commission created by the North Carolina General Assembly, will hold a public hearing to receive comment on the incorporation of the proposed Village of Corolla on Friday, June 1, 2007, at 5:30 pm at the Outer Banks Center for Wildlife Education in Corolla.

The public is invited to attend. Seating is limited; therefore, proponents and opponents of incorporation are encouraged to select individuals to represent their position before the Commission. Speakers will be limited to three minutes. If you have questions about the public hearing, please contact Ms. Gayle L. Moses, Commission Legal Counsel, at (919) 733-6660 or gaylem@ncleg.net.

Kill Devil Hills

The Board of Commissioners will be holding a retreat on Wednesday, May 16th at 9:00 a.m. to discuss and take possible action on a variety of planning and zoning matters reviewed at a recent joint work session with the Planning Board.

The Board has also scheduled a special work session for discussions with KDH business leaders, owners and operators for May 23rd at 6:00 p.m. This work session is an opportunity for an exchange of ideas, comments, and suggestions about Kill Devil Hills, its operations and services and how they may be improved. The following points will be used to facilitate initial discussions:
* What are issues the business community feels are most important to the future of the town?
* What is the Board doing the business community strongly supports?
* What is the Board doing to which the business community is opposed?
* Are there issues the business community feels are being inadequately addressed?

The Town is also in the process of mailing Citizen Opinion Surveys to all residents. Residents will be asked about town services, growth and development, and the protection of natural resources. Survey responses will assist the Town in updating the Land Use Plan which is used to plan for the future of Kill Devil Hills. As an added incentive to return the survey, respondents will have the chance to win one of twenty grocery store gift certificates. All survey responses will be kept confidential.

Real Estate Industry the Focus of “60 Minutes” Segment

This Sunday (May 13th) at 7 pm on CBS, a segment on real estate will air on “60 Minutes.” Representatives of the National Association of Realtors have been dealing with “60 Minutes” investigative reporters for more than a year. They have concerns that the segment will not feature at length any of the topics they spent many hours educating CBS producers on such as NAR’s anti-trust lawsuit over their Internet display listing policy and minimum service rules.


The proposed Currituck Outer Banks Overlay District Sign Ordinance amendment may see the light of day yet. Business owners and citizens have decided to hold another meeting to work through issues and try to squelch rumors that have circulated since the amendment passed the Planning Board last month. Clarification of vehicle signs will be addressed as well as banners and flags. Since it is likely that language changes will be made, the amendment will have to be heard once again by the Planning Board, and once approved will be forwarded to Commissioners for a public hearing.

Many realtors have been concerned about the visibility of open house signs. The current ordinance only allows for an open house sign to be placed in front of a dwelling where the open house is taking place. The new ordinance, if approved by the Commissioners, will allow for directional sign to the Open House as well as on-premise signage. The new sign ordinance will also “legalize” many existing signs that are no defined under the current ordinance such as railing signs, awning signs and landscaping signs.

North Carolina Tax Collections Ahead of Projections – from NCAR reports
Members of the North Carolina General Assembly were told earlier this week what the NC Association of REALTORS® has been saying for some time – the State of North Carolina doesn’t have a revenue problem. The state has collected $260 million more than originally expected from April tax filings and as a result, the government expects to have a surplus in revenues of approximately $1.1 billion. Tim Kent, executive vice president of the NC Association of REALTORS®, said the news validates the premise that North Carolina doesn’t have a problem when it comes to revenue and lends support to the association’s stance that a proposed 1 percent Home Tax is both unwarranted and unfair. Go to www.itsabadidea.org for more info.

OBAR General Membership Meeting

The Outer Banks Association of Realtors will hold its next General Membership Meeting on Wednesday, May 23rd at the Avon Volunteer Fire Department. Registration begins at 11:30 a.m. and the luncheon/business meeting begins at noon. Deadline to register for the meeting is Wednesday, May 16th.

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