Emerald Tidings

September 2008

  1. Informational Meeting - "The Aquarium Pier at Emerald Isle" - September 20
  2. Town Looks to Future to Meet Need for Public Boat Launching Facility
  3. Beach Driving Season Begins September 15
  4. Household Hazardous Waste Collection Days - September 27 and October 18
  5. New Storm Water Pumps Completed in Spinnakers Reach
  6. 3rd Annual Emerald Isle Day4Kids - September 20
  7. 5th Annual Emerald Isle Triathlon - October 18
  8. FOR SALE - Existing EMS Station Building

Informational Meeting - "The Aquarium Pier at Emerald Isle"

Saturday, September 20 - 10 am - NC Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores The Town of Emerald Isle and the NC Aquariums will co-host a special informational meeting about the planned "Aquarium Pier at Emerald Isle" on Saturday, September 20, 2008 at 10 am at the NC Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores.  The meeting is open to the public, with a special invitation extended to property owners located near the site of the new facility - the Town's Eastern Ocean Regional Access located near mile marker 15 on NC 58.    Officials from the Town and the NC Aquariums will make a presentation, and will be available to answer questions and receive public input about the Pier project.  The Town and the NC Aquariums are committed to the creation of a first-class facility to benefit the people of Carteret County, all of North Carolina, and our numerous visitors from all around the USA and the world.  The Town and the NC Aquariums will be working hard to keep the public well-informed about the project, and the September 20 informational meeting is the first step in our public education and public input efforts.    A special advisory committee will also be formed later this year, with 4 appointments by the Town and 4 appointments by the NC Aquariums.  Applications for the advisory committee will be solicited later this year, with appointments soon thereafter.  (More details will be provided on the Town's website, www.emeraldisle-nc.org in the future.)  The advisory committee will provide input to the project development team, which consists of both Town and NC Aquarium officials, as we move through the design process.  
The Town is currently in the process of conveying the Eastern Ocean Regional Access site to the State of NC for the project, and the formal transfer should occur later this year.  After  transfer of the property to the State, detailed design work for will begin later this year or in early 2009.  The Town's and the NC Aquariums' goal is to open the new facility by 2012.    Please join us on September 20 if you are interested!  (It is not necessary to pay an Aquarium admission fee to attend the meeting.)

Town Looks to Future to Meet Need for Public Boat Launching Facility - Will Continue Efforts

Boaters in Emerald Isle have been well-served by the privately-owned, open-to-the-public Island Harbor Marina for many, many years.  Island Harbor Marina is the only widely-accessible public boat launching facility in the Emerald Isle town limits with significant parking.

Early planning is underway for the construction of beneficial improvements to the marina by the private owners of the marina property, perhaps under new management with a new business model, new focus, and new look.  Construction could begin within the next couple of years.  Although no formal development plans have been submitted for Town review yet, the potential exists that an open-to-the-public boat launching facility may not be included with the new, private marina project. 

Town leaders believe it is important for Emerald Isle to maintain a widely-accessible public boat launching facility with significant parking in Emerald Isle, and have already begun to work on this issue.  First, the Town has sought and will continue to seek to work closely with the owners of the new marina project.  The Town will be seeking ways to accommodate the general public's boating needs while respecting the property development rights of the owners and their vision for their project.  Second, the Town will be exploring other alternatives to provide meaningful public boating access in Emerald Isle in the future, potentially including land acquisition with future grant funding. 

The Town recently attempted to purchase a large soundfront tract of land in central Emerald Isle for the development of a public boat launching facility, and identified several likely grant funding sources for the project.  Unfortunately, the Town's offers to purchase the land were ultimately rejected, primarily due to the need to wait for several months for grant funding awards and the lack of complete certainty of funding until the grant processes were completed.  The Town and potential State and local partners invested a great deal of time and energy to this effort over the past two months because it is and will continue to be a high priority for the Town. 

The Town will continue its efforts to maintain a meaningful public boat launching facility in Emerald Isle in the future.

Beach Driving Season Begins September 15

Please Respect the Environment and Others on the Beach 

The annual beach driving season begins on September 15, and the Town welcomes surf fishermen to enjoy the great fall fishing in Emerald Isle!  A beach driving permit is necessary to access the beach, and can be purchased at Emerald Isle Town Hall during normal business hours.  An application and other information is available at http://www.emeraldisle-nc.org/beachdrivingpage.htm .  The Town offers annual beach driving permits only (no daily or weekly permits are issued), with fees ranging from free (handicapped and elderly) to either $40 or $80, depending on property ownership.

The Town is proud of its beaches, and welcomes beachgoers of all interests to enjoy everything the beaches have to offer.  The Town greatly values its image as "A Family Beach", and there are often people of all ages walking, playing, and relaxing on our beaches.  There are often many small children on the beach, and their safety is our greatest concern.  We urge all beach drivers to drive with caution and courtesy, and respect others' right to also enjoy the public beach.  The Town has invested significant local funds in the preservation of our beaches and dunes.  We urge all beach drivers to avoid all primary dune areas, which provide vital protection during hurricanes and other storm events.  Finally, the Town also greatly values the unique wildlife on our beaches.  Emerald Isle is home to Federal endangered and/or threatened sea turtle nests and bird nests, and we urge beach drivers to drive with concern for these animals' nesting areas. 

The Town has adopted an ordinance regulating beach driving activities, and we are committed to ensuring compliance with these regulations.  The Emerald Isle Police Department will strictly enforce the Town's regulations.  The Town's main regulations are summarized as follows: 

  • No driving is allowed on the beach without an official Town of Emerald Isle beach driving permit.
  • Driving is allowed from September 15 to April 30, with the exception of the 10-day period from and including the Friday prior to Easter until and including the Sunday that occurs 7 days after Easter.
  • Driving is allowed from 5 am until 9 pm daily during September, October, and April.  Driving is allowed from 5 am until 7 pm daily during November, December, January, February, and March.
  • Authorized beach access ramps are located at the Ocean Drive "dog-leg" (near mile marker 15 on NC 58), at the end of Black Skimmer Drive (across from Town Hall), and on Ocean Drive near the end of Doe Drive and Sea Dunes Drive (off Coast Guard Road).  The beach access ramp at The Point at the end of Inlet Drive is currently closed, but may be reopened later this year. 
  • Driving on primary dunes is strictly prohibited.
  • Some sections of the beach may be closed from time to time in order to protect endangered and/or threatened sea turtle and bird nests, and/or to provide for general protection of public health, safety, and welfare.  Closed sections will be posted and roped, and beach drivers must avoid these areas entirely. 
  • The speed limit is 20 mph.  Please travel at lower speeds near other beachgoers.
  • Do not dispose of litter on the beach strand.  All litter must be taken off the beach or placed in Town trash receptacles.
  • The penalties for violations of the Town's regulations range from $50 to $500 plus court costs, and may include the revocation of your beach driving permit.  In addition, violations affecting endangered and/or threatened species, whether intentional or unintentional, also carry stiff Federal penalties with fines up to $50,000 and/or jail time.

The cooperation of all beach drivers is greatly appreciated.  Our goal is to provide a safe and enjoyable beach experience for beach drivers and others visiting our beach.  Concerned citizens who observe violators are encouraged to contact the Emerald Isle Police Department at 252-354-2021.

Good luck with the fishing!         

Household Hazardous Waste Collection Days - September 27 (Morehead City) and October 18 (Cape Carteret)

The Coastal Regional Solid Waste Management Authority (CRSWMA) provides solid waste disposal services for Carteret, Craven, and Pamlico counties, including the Town of Emerald Isle.  CRSWMA operates a regional landfill in Tuscarora, NC (east of New Bern), and operates the sold waste transfer station in Newport.  All residential trash collected in Emerald Isle is transported to a CRSWMA facility.     Household hazardous waste should not be disposed of with residential garbage, and CRSWMA offers periodic household hazardous waste collection events.  CRSWMA has announced the dates for Carteret County for 2008.  The first event is on Saturday, September 27 from 8 am to 1 pm at the Carteret County Health Department on Bridges Street in Morehead City.  The second, and closest event, is on Saturday, October 18 from 8 am to 1 pm at Lowe's Home Improvement on NC 24 in Cape Carteret.   CRSWMA will accept various household hazardous waste items, including batteries, paint, mineral spirits, lighter fluid, etc. at these special collection events.  CRSWMA will also accept old computers and televisions.  For more information about these household hazardous waste collection events, please contact CRSWMA at 252-633-1564 or visit their website at www.crswma.com.  

New Storm Water Pumps Completed in Spinnakers Reach

Phase II of Coast Guard Road Storm Water Project Will Also Benefit Lands End and Dolphin Ridge The Town has completed the installation of two new storm water pumps in the Spinnakers Reach subdivision, and these pumps are ready for action if the Town is impacted by significant flooding during the 2008 hurricane season and beyond.   The two new pumps complement existing Town storm water pumps on Deer Horn Drive, Doe Drive, and Conch Court.  Storm water and ground water from these locations is pumped to wetlands at Emerald Isle Woods Park for dispersal away from developed neighborhoods.  The Spinnakers Reach pumps represent the completion of Phase II of the overall Coast Guard Road Storm Water Project.  The Town's overall system now consists of a total of 5 pumps and associated improvements in Emerald Isle Woods Park.  Existing subdivision-owned pumps in Lands End complement the Town's system, and the Town works closely with representatives from Lands End to maximize the combined effectiveness of both systems.    The two new pumps in Spinnakers Reach will provide direct benefits in Spinnakers Reach, and will also relieve the pressure on the Lands End system and reduce the degree and duration of flooding in Dolphin Ridge, immediately "upstream" of Spinnakers Reach.   The Town has future plans for the installation of an additional storm water pump on Island Circle at The Point, and may add additional pumps in Lands End if ultimately necessary.    The Town's overall Coast Guard Road Storm Water Project has been applauded by State water quality officials and environmental groups as an environmentally-friendly solution to chronic storm water flooding in the Coast Guard Road area.

3rd Annual Emerald Isle Day4Kids - September 20

10 am - 2 pm, Emerald Isle Community Center 

  Celebrate our children by spending meaningful time with them at Emerald Isle's Day4Kids on September 20!  Rain or Shine!   

Day4Kids brings adults and children of all ages together for a fun-filled day of vendors, activities, games, face painting and more!    All activities at Day4Kids are free, with many great giveaways for the kids!  Contact Laura Lee Davis at 252-354-6350 or ldavis@emeraldisle-nc.org for more details!  

5th Annual Emerald Isle Triathlon - October 18

The fifth annual Emerald Isle Triathlon will be held on Saturday, October 18, 2008 starting at 8 am at the Eastern Ocean Regional Access near mile marker 15 on NC 58.  The event is proudly sponsored by Emerald Isle Parks and Recreation and the Emerald Isle Business Association.

The triathlon will consist of a 750-meter swim, followed by a 12-mile bike race, and conclude with a 5K run. The swim will take place in the Atlantic Ocean. Contestants will then compete in an out-and-back bike race west on NC 58, followed by an out-and-back run east on Ocean Drive. 

Entry fees are $45 for USAT members, $55 for non-members, and $100 for teams. Register up until October 1.  There will be no race day registration.  Visit www.emeraldisle-nc.org to print a registration form or register online at www.active.com .  The field will be limited to 300 entrants.  

Volunteers are also needed for water safety, traffic marshals, transition monitors, registration and timing.

Please contact the Emerald Isle Parks and Recreation Department for additional information at 252-354-6350 or asanderson@emeraldisle-nc.org

FOR SALE - Existing EMS Station Building - 218 Cedar Street

The Town is currently partnering with Emerald Isle EMS, Inc. to construct a new EMS station on Town-owned land adjacent to Fire Station 1 on NC 58.  The new building is expected to be complete by late September 2008, at which time Emerald Isle EMS, Inc. will occupy the new building.    The Town will take possession of the existing EMS Station at 218 Cedar Street at that time, and is currently offering the property for sale.  The sale price is $450,000, and the Town will consider all offers.  A detailed property listing, including photos, is available for viewing at http://www.emeraldisle-nc.org/forsale.htm .    For more information, please contact Town Manager Frank Rush at 252-354-3424 or frush@emeraldisle-nc.org.

Frank A. Rush, Jr. Town Manager Town of Emerald Isle 7500 Emerald Drive Emerald Isle, NC 28594 252-354-3424 frush@emeraldisle-nc.org

Frank A. Rush, Jr.
Town Manager
Posted by Frank Rush Monday, September 1, 2008 8:14:00 AM