Currituck commissioners pass Second Amendment support resolution
Published 1:40 pm Monday, February 3, 2020
During a January 21 regular mid-month meeting, actions for the Currituck County Board of Commissioners included authorizing construction of a communication tower in Carova, a 228.83 acre residential development in Moyock Township, expansion of the Moyock Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant and passing a resolution in support of the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
After hearing comments for and against making Currituck a Second Amendment refuge county, commissioners gave unanimous support to a resolution supporting the rights afforded by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
Among the comments of support by commissioners, Paul M. Beaumont said he thought that the second amendment is the one that helps keep the first amendment rights in place and Chairman Bob White added that while felons and others convicted of aggravated assaults are clearly not people that should have weapons the night’s action was not to pass a law, the resolution is a show of support for the Constitution.
Presenting the resolution to the board, commissioner J. Owen Etheridge advised that the action was not politically motivated and urged everyone to read the Constitution and Bill of Rights in order to be informed citizens.
“This is intended to be a proactive rather than reactive action,” said Etheridge. “I don’t want to wait like in Virginia. If anything happens in our General Assembly that changes its political philosophy makeup and we have to sit her a year from now trying to react to something coming down the pike.”
He went on to say Currituck County has always been known as a sportsmen’s paradise, and that it could not make that claim without protecting the rights of individuals under the Second Amendment.
“I did some research,” Etheridge continued, “and found that of all the mass shootings since 1982, 75 percent of them have been committed with illegally purchased guns. So that raises the question of why not enforce the gun laws we already have on the books?”
Etheridge concluded his comments by saying a 1963 meeting of World War II participants revealed that Japan did not follow up its Pearl Harbor bombing with an attack on California and the west coast of the United States for fear that Americans with guns would be behind every blade of grass.
As presented and passed, the resolution says the Board of Commissioners for Currituck County supports the Second Amendment right of citizens to possess firearms and to use firearms for traditionally lawful purposes, commissioners will take all necessary steps within their power to ensure that legislative bodies do not enact legislation affecting the Second Amendment right of citizens to bear arms and use firearms for traditionally lawful purposes including lobbying of legislative delegations and intervention in litigation challenging such legislation and the Currituck County Board of Commissioners declares Currituck County to be a “Second Amendment Refuge.”
Taking up the first of three public hearings, commissioners approved a request from Clearview Tower Company II, LLC to construct a 150 foot telecommunications tower on Carova Beach Volunteer Fire Department and Rescue Squad, Inc. property.
According to Benjamin M. Gallop, attorney for the construction company, the tower will be located on the western end of property near Seagull Lane and Sandpiper Road and upon completion be owned by the fire department.
Painting is to match the Carova water tower and lighting requirements are to be reevaluated prior to construction of a helicopter landing pad and, if lighting is required, it shall comply with the minimum FAA lighting standards. Tower placement is expected to improve emergency communications in the Carova area.
The second public hearing was for a much larger project, development of the Fost Tract located on the west side of Caratoke Highway north of Ranchland.
According to Mark Bissell, president of Bissell Professional Group in Kitty Hawk, the planned residential development will include 353 single family and 126 multi-family dwellings in the first five phases and 22,000 sq. ft. commercial space to be completed later.
Although the county’s Technical Review Committee recommended the issue be tabled until several deficiencies are adequately addressed and a motion to do so failed for lack of a second, Bissell covered how most of the deficiencies have been or will be rectified.
Among them was a revised Board of Education statement that Shawboro Elementary School does have capacity for the 119 elementary students the project is expected to generate. There was also discussion on how development of the property will help improve drainage problems for Rowland Creek Canal and the nearby Ranchland subdivision.
After more than 90 minutes of testimony and discussion, commissioners gave the project a green light
Also approved was a use permit for Currituck County to expand its existing Moyock Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant at 501 Winslow Road in Moyock Township.
Construction plans call for improved wastewater treatment technology with a biological treatment unit and membrane bioreactor to remove pathogens and increasing the current wastewater treatment plant capacity from 99,000 gpd to 200,000 gpd, enough additional capacity for the proposed Currituck Station development and commercial area along Caratoke Highway. The 68 acre tract of land is also almost a mile off Caratoke Highway and remote enough to allow expansion of up to 800,000 to 1,000,000 gpd.
County manager Ben Stikeleather pointed out also that in addition to the construction of a physical structure approximately one mile of roadway work will also be needed.
The facility will be surrounded by a chain link fence and access by the public prohibited.
Other business for the evening included:
– Appointing Harold Walston to serve on the Recreation Advisory for a term expiring January, 2022;
– Appointing O. Vance Aydlett Jr. to the ABC Board;
– Approving a consent agenda with January 6 meeting minutes;
– Approving an Ocean Sands Water & Sewer District Budget Amendment for $ 25,000 to purchase chemicals;
– Tabling board appointments for Moyock Stormwater Service District until all applicant names could be reviewed;
– A First Solar donation presentation to Currituck County Department of Social Services;
– Social Services departmental report from DSS director Samantha Hurd;
– Currituck County Schools report from school superintendent Mark Stefanik.
The meeting ended with a closed session pursuant to discuss a personnel matter. Commissioners will meet again for their next regular meeting at 6 p.m. February 3.