Good morning, everyone.
It looks like we have a beautiful, warm day ahead of us, and an even warmer day, with the temperature close to 70 degrees, tomorrow. We’re in the middle of the December summer that we all love. Enjoy!
I’d like to remind you that the Exploratory Committee to Address Cut-Through Traffic is meeting today at 5:30 p.m. in the Kern Pitts Center. Chairperson Tommy Karole says he plans to follow up on the ideas that came out of the Nov. 19 public forum, particularly the no-left turn option, and engage in further brainstorming. He has not issued a formal agenda. Newly sworn Town Council members Elizabeth Morey and Matt Neal will be taking over Council sponsorship of this six-person citizens’ committee from former Councilman Fred Newberry, who is responsible for the committee being formed.
In other town business, the seven-member Town Capital Infrastructure Improvement Planning Committee meets Wednesday at 2 p.m. in the Pitts Center to discuss the Dewberry Lane street improvement plan options prepared by the Town Engineer. This presumably will be the last meeting of the current committee, whose members were named in 2017 and include appointees by former Councilmen Gary McDonald and Fred Newberry. The Town Council did not announce the new committee membership at its Dec. 3 meeting; it is expected to do so at its Jan. 7 meeting.
I will report on both committee meetings later in the week.
NO! MINI-HOTELS CAMPAIGN
I would like to put in a plug for the “No! Mini-Hotels” Go Fund Me campaign. The two appeals filed by homeowners who own property across from SAGA’s mini-hotels on Ocean Boulevard have reached the court level and will be argued with great energy and enthusiasm by the homeowners’ attorney, Jim Conner of Calhoun, Bhella & Sechrest of Durham. Mr. Conner is an excellent environmental lawyer.
The Coastal Area Management Act (CAMA) permit appeal, which challenges the permits issued to SAGA’s investor groups by the State of North Carolina as being inconsistent with Southern Shores’ Land-Use Plan, is in Wake County Superior Court in Raleigh. According to Mr. Conner, a motion hearing in the litigation will be held in January.
The appeal of the zoning permit issued by the Town of Southern Shores for the construction at 134 Ocean Blvd. is in Dare County Superior Court. Mr. Conner has informed The Beacon that a motion hearing will be held in this litigation in February, with the appeal scheduled to be heard in April. The petitioner-homeowner lost at the Town Board of Adjustment level, 3-2.
I will update the nominihotels.com website in January with specifics.
As you might imagine, the litigation has been costly, but the petitioners are determined to continue with it because of the principles involved, especially in the CAMA permit case. They seek to fortify the Southern Shores Land-Use Plan and to protect the Town from development that is oversized and destructive of Southern Shores’ character.
As the year winds down and you are considering your financial status, taxes, donations, etc., please consider making a contribution to the petitioners’ litigation war chest. No donation is too small. The mini-hotels at 98 Ocean Blvd. and 134 Ocean Blvd. have been built, but it is not too late for a court to order them to be torn down. SAGA’s investor groups built these rental machines at their own risk, knowing that the outcome of the litigation may be adverse to their financial interests. They didn’t care.
You may access the Go Fund Me campaign here:
If you would like a No! Mini-Hotels sign to display in your yard, please send a request with your address to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you! See you at 5:30 p.m.