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Dare’s commissioners serve up support for event center, beach nourishment

As promised, the Dare County Board of Commissioners, meeting Aug. 16, 2021, unanimously passed a resolution supporting the Dare County Tourism Board Event Center concept.

The concept was presented at the board’s meeting Aug. 2.

The resolution acknowledges supporting the concept and allows planning and consideration to take place regarding the Nags Head Unified Development Ordinance, permitting with North Carolina agencies about septic and stormwater and construction and operations financing with Dare County and the county’s Tourism Board.

The commissioners, also as promised, charged tax collector Becky Huff to begin tax collections on current taxes based on the budgeted valuation of $16,312,781,089 and the gross county and municipal levies of $100,683,146.10. The order covers the 2021 taxes for Dare County and the Towns of Kill Devil Hills, Kitty Hawk, Manteo, Southern Shores and Duck.

The tax total for each property in Dare County was posted Aug. 17, 2021. The individual property tax amount is available on the Dare County Geographic Information System (GIS) at darenc.com. A copy of the tax bill will also be posted at darenc.com.

The tax bills will be mailed Aug. 19, 2021.

Tax bills are due Sept. 1, 2021 but can be paid without interest until Wednesday, Jan. 5, 2022.

The commissioners moved ahead on financing the beach nourishment project for Duck, Southern Shores, Kitty Hawk and Kill Devil Hills and improvements in the county’s Justice Center.

The reimbursement resolution declares the county’s intent to reimburse itself for expenditures before debt financing is in place.

The project figure in the resolution is $13 million. However, Kill Devil Hills has reduced the amount of sand for its portion of the project and Dare added in the court expenses. The total estimate for financing is now $11.4 million.

The courthouse improvement project totaling $373,768 includes replacing the roof, carpet in the Clerk of Court office and sound panels in Courtrooms A, B and D along with an upgrade so only fabric will need to be replaced in the future.

The adopted consent agenda included the invitation list to Southern Albemarle Association’s annual meeting, the tax collector’s report and a statewide mutual aid agreement with North Carolina Emergency Management that streamlines resource sharing across the state.

Also in the consent agenda was the approval for Dare County Transportation System to hire second full-time driver. The county’s transportation department is carrying forward $216,000 in Transportation CARES revenue which must be used by June 30, 2022.

The commissioners held a closed session about the opioid settlement agreement. County attorney Robert L. Outten announced that the board had provided direction about the settlement.

In his opening remarks, board Chairman Robert L. Woodard provided an update on the progress of the new College of The Albemarle campus. He announced that the project is 55% complete and that contractor Barnhill is on schedule for completion March 2022.

He briefed the board on the NC 12 Task Force and talked about the death of Mary Utz, whom he met at Spring Harbor.

For those whose health is compromised, a COVID-19 booster shot is available in Dare County. Register online at darenc.com/Register4vaccine or call the county’s COVID-19 hotline at 252-475-5008.

On Aug. 11, senior leaders in Dare County agreed to a unified policy calling for mask wearing in all incorporated town and Dare County offices.

“It was the right thing to do at this time,” said Woodard.

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