Manteo commissioners modify softball fieldhouse permit, learn more about K-9 Hardy

Published 7:52 am Thursday, March 30, 2023

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Manteo commissioners okayed a minor modification to the approved Manteo High School softball fieldhouse special use permit.

The request was to move the approved fieldhouse location from the third base side of the field to the first base side due to possible obstruction of the soccer scoreboard.

The planning staff found the minor modification consistent with the town’s zoning ordinance and recommended approval, which was unanimously granted March 15, 2023.

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At the start of the March 15, 2023, meeting the commissioners were treated to a video to introduce K-9 Hardy and his handler, Officer Rhoads. The video showcases what services the pair provides within the Town of Manteo.

In the board’s mid-month meetings, written department reports are submitted. In the March 15, 2023 Board of Commissioners agenda, which is on the town’s website, the following information is posted for February 2023:

Waterfront Operations

Maritime Museum: work continued on Optimist sailboats. Varnish and paint touch up on hulls. Replaced several deck boards on the boardwalk. Volunteers worked 112 hours.

Marina Activity: three transient boats visited marina with average stay one night, except one sailboat spending a month and leaving mid-March. One boat was at the free docks during February.

Public Works: Added sand to diggers at Collis playground. Repaired a section of fence surrounding the Christmas tree; dug up drain pipe behind condos to check for collapse; began edging and trimming sidewalks within the town; installed the base for the flagpole at the cemetery; completed edging along Highway 64; continue picking up along the causeway.

Education/achievements: Frankie Woodley completed Work Zone Traffic Control Supervisor Safety Training at North Carolina State University.

Manteo Police Department

Operations Summary: meetings were held with NCDOT, Hotline staff, Juvenile Crime Prevention Council, about 4th of July; officers took training about FlexCAD, courtroom testimony, sex crimes, administrative officers management, police law, crime prevention, two attended intox recertification. Officers completed traffic enforcement and investigation certificate, community policing certificate, firearms instructor course and specialized simunitions instruction training; instructed in interview curriculum at basic law enforcement training at College of The Albemarle and RADAR Operator for Surrounding Law Enforcement Agencies through College of The Albemarle at Nags Head Police Department.

During February, the department attended three accidents and made 11 arrests including two each of possession of cocaine, marijuana and drug paraphernalia, one DWI and one larceny of alcohol.

The department issued 18 citations, including four for no driver’s license; two for speeding, failure of stop at red light, possession of drug paraphernalia and marijuana.

The department conducted 13 investigations, closing four by other means and five by arrest including larceny of bicycle and alcohol, open container, revoked license. Two cases were labeled inactive.

Officers handled one ordinance violation and issued one warning ticket.

Water and Sewer

In February, the Wastewater Treatment Plant was compliant and free of violations for the month. The sewer collection system was free of sanitary sewer overflows. The water distribution system was compliant and no violations occurred.

Josh O’Brien summarized the February work on Shallowbag Bay Pump Station Project: Demolition of existing dry well and wet well; demolition of an abandoned manhole in the parking lot; installation of second air release valve (ARV) on Fernando Street; concrete paving of new parking lot.

“New pump station is now online but work is ongoing to complete the project per design including punch list items including concrete curing, painting of new parking lot, grading, seeding, and site restoration,” wrote O’Brien.

Also reported was repairing a water main leak on Wingina Avenue and leaking water service on Waterfront dock line.

Breakdown of service, installations and operations: Both the water and sewer operations conducted 30 location requests. In the water system, meter troubleshooting registered eight and 14 meters were reread. For the sewer system, one new connection was completed and one repaired. A wastewater treatment plant drive was repaired. The department made three road patches.


One meeting with Preservation and Architectural Review Committee and two special meetings with Planning Board were held.

Planning: Marshes Light to replace all light posts with lower wattage lights; applied for an Agona Street Stormwater Grant; attended the winter conference of the North Carolina Association of Zoning Officials and a planners’ meeting of the Community Rating System.

Emergency Management/Fire Marshall: completed 18 fire inspections and issued five fire permits; created an Exeter Street water interruption incident plan; attended emergency management health and medical issues training; held fire extinguisher training class for six preschool teachers.

Town planner Matt Farmer has received his certified emergency manager certification.

Building permits issued: Commercial: $531,799. Residential: $502,010.80. Total value: $1,045,676.51; Cost of permits: $11,866.71.

Community and Economic Development

Main Street Program: Arranged for free façade design by UNC Greensboro students awarded to the Town for the Pioneer Theatre. Students will offer potential design options for the theatre, which is only offered to Main Street communities. The Tudor exterior was removed from the Pioneer, which revealed the original facade.

Attended Main Street orientation as a refresher; working on organization of the economic development implementation plan; edited the Main Street website page for the town; held a Manteo Main Street Advisory Board meeting on Feb. 9; met with NC Main Street staff and other towns about the joint presentation at the NC Main Street conference in March in Statesville.

Special Events: Planning efforts continue for the 2023 Downtown Market, 2023 Dare Days and the 2023 4th of July events; a total of 47 applications have been submitted for the 2023 Downtown Market with 42 slots available. The deadline for application submittal is April 6; continuing to secure various vendors for Dare Day and July 4, 2023 events; met with third-party groups about specific special events to be held in town this year. It is shaping up to be a very busy year, states the report from Michele Bunce.

Public Relations: Completed multiple postings on 17 different topics or meetings and updated information on the town’s website and the Discover Manteo website. Working on new highway pole banners.

Information Technology

Cybersecurity Training: Cybersecurity training video was on social media security hygiene.

Cemetery Software: working with the cemetery software provider to provide an online version of the cemetery.

Relocation of Queen Elizabeth Camera: relocating the Queen Elizabeth camera to a new light pole. This light pole has been installed on the corner of Queen Elizabeth Avenue and Fernando Street.

Upgrade of police body cameras: upgrading the police officer’s body cameras has started. The new solution will allow the cameras to easily manage the videos and share them with authorized individuals. The solution will provide a no-fault warranty, advanced hardware replacement and provide a new camera in three years.


In February, the town started taking in-person credit card payments at the Town Hall. This process offers a much-desired added payment option for citizens in addition to cash, check and 24-hour drop-box options. There is no fee charged to the customer for processing in-person credit card transactions.

Heather Doughtie reported she attended a three-day training at the NC School of Government titled “Local Government Fundamentals” on Feb. 21-23, 2023. This training covered a multitude of topics, including the legal structure of municipalities, public records, budgeting, public employment law, zoning regulation and purchasing and contracts.

Meetings about the town’s new online payment interface system that should go live in the upcoming months.

Fiscal year 2023-24 budget packets were distributed to each department within the town for completion to assist in this year’s budget preparation.

Deposit and investment reconciliations have been completed for February with no errors or omissions. In addition, the required monthly and quarterly reporting has been completed.