Dare commissioners hear about broadband, issue proclamations at April meeting

Published 12:22 pm Monday, April 17, 2023

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Dare commissioners delved into broadband services, passed two proclamations, agreed to two requests from the Dare County Tourism Board and made appointments to five boards at the April 3, 2023 meeting.

Eric Collins, director of government affairs for Charter Communications, was the meeting’s first presenter. Charter Communications is the parent company of the Spectrum brand that provides video, broadband and mobile services and digital phone.

The service area involves the north beach towns, Manteo and Hatteras Island.

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He said over the next two to three years infrastructure will be updated with high split technology.

Board of Commissioners Chairman Robert L. Woodard verified that a single fiber line owned by Brightspeed served Hatteras Island. Woodard stressed that Hatteras Island has lost the critical 911 service for four times in the last year. Collins said that information never made it to him.

Commissioner Danny Couch said it was time for a Plan B.

The commissioners proclaimed that the first week on April was the Week of the Young Child, during which early childhood learning opportunities and educators are celebrated.

The entire month of April is proclaimed as Child Abuse Prevention Month. The proclamation states that “child abuse and neglect are a community responsibility affecting both the current and future quality of life of a community.”

Dare County Tourism Board sent two requests for consent to spend restricted fund money. Executive director of the Outer Banks Visitors Bureau Lee Nettles made the presentations.

The commissioners consented to the request to send $75,000 from the Long Term Unappropriated Grant Fund to the Roanoke Island Historical Association to purchase a sound array for The Lost Colony production.

The commissioners also consented to a second request to spend $55,000 from the Short Term Restricted Fund for July 4 fireworks displays as follows: Avon Property Owners Association, $14,525; Town of Kill Devil Hills, $12,200; Town of Manteo, $14,525; and Town of Nags Head, $13,750.

In approving the consent agenda, the commissioners:

—Appropriated $1,580 in Adult Protective Services Essential Services Funds, which are used to provide vital services to disabled adults for whom the need for protective services has been substantiated. These federal funds can be spent January to July 2023.

—Approved a contract for water department billing services with EverView, an Output Services Group, with offices in Carlstadt, N.J.

States the item explanation: “EverView billing services will allow customers the option to have their bills emailed, giving the customer more flexibility and options. Emailed bills will save on postage and allow customers to view their past bills and history on-line for 24 months.”

The contract charges $0.131 for printing, folding, inserting and mailing bills, standard envelope, remit envelope; householding $0.05 combining multiple bills to one customer; address correction $500 for year; online archive accessible 24/7 $500 per year, 18 month duration; e-statements $0.10; special programming $125 per hour; special graphic changes $75 per hour.

—Approved and authorized county attorney to sign Zacchaeus Legal Services agreement. Zacchaeus Legal Services has provided Dare County with collection of delinquent real estate tax services since 2012.

—Adopted a $630,000 budget amendment to increase bulk fuel revenues and expenses to compensate for fuel price increases.

—Adopted a $6,000 budget amendment for the Virginia S. Tillett Community Center to record increases in Dare to Scare 5k Race sponsorships and participants, toy drive donations, specific event donations increasing and day trip participant fees.

—Ordered Becky Huff, the Dare County Tax Collector, to advertise the unpaid ad valorem taxes as of March 27, 2023, at $674,643.05. The listing appeared in the April 9, 2023, edition of The Coastland Times.

—Received a grant from Trillium Health Resources, Opioid Remediations Program. Funding is to be used to purchase items to help reduce the number of opioid related overdose and deaths. Items include naloxone, lock boxes and/or agreed upon items described in an attachment to the contract, for the purpose of supporting opioid remediation programs. Funding period is Feb. 22 through June 30, 2023.

The commissioners made appointments to the following boards:

—Aging Advisory Council for the Albemarle Commission: Beth Moore and Sandy Pace.

—Board of Adjustment: reappointed Edward Mann Jr. and Anna Creef.

—Dare County Airport Authority: reappointed James R. Kenny to a four-year term.

—Manns Harbor Community Center: reappointed Cyndy Holda, Ladd Bayliss, Jonathan Oglesby and Jessie “Troy” Outland Jr.

—Veterans Advisory Council: reappointed Robert Probst and Marsha Brown.

During commissioner comments, commissioner Steve House requested funds to help underwrite a First Flight Middle School Odyssey of the Mind team trip to the world finals at Michigan State University. Expected costs are $25,000. The commissioners agreed to provide funding not to exceed $10,000.

At the end of the meeting, county manager Robert L. Outten asked the commissioners to move $500,000 which is needed to fund the implementation of the salary study. Monies are available to cover the request.

The Dare County Board of Commissioners is scheduled to meet in regular session at 5 p.m., May 1, 2023.