Emerald Tidings

February 2016

2016 Comprehensive Plan / Land Use Plan Update Ready to Begin!

The Town is now embarking on a year-long process to update and develop a new Comprehensive Plan / Land Use Plan.  The new plan will identify the community's future vision for the Town, and will also include policies and goals for new development and public investment over the next 10 - 15 years.  We are excited about this process, and look forward to receiving plentiful and meaningful public input about the future direction of the Town of Emerald Isle.

The planning process will include numerous mechanisms to secure public input, including the appointment of a diverse 13-member Steering Committee to guide the process, individual interviews with several community stakeholders, special public meetings, formal consideration by the Planning Board and the Board of Commissioners, and a formal public hearing prior to adoption. In addition, a community survey will be conducted, and a special website will be activated (with a link from www.emeraldisle-nc.org)  that will allow the public to participate in the planning process and track the development of the plan throughout the year.  The Steering Committee will meet 6 - 8 times over the next year, and the public is also encouraged to attend these meetings.

The first Steering Committee meeting is scheduled for Thursday, February 18 at 3 pm in the Town Board Meeting Room.  Additional meetings have not yet been scheduled, but will be publicized on the Town's website, Facebook, and Twitter platforms, as well as the special website.

Please get involved, and share your ideas and opinions about the future direction of Emerald Isle!

Beach Wheelchair Program Benefits Many!  Donations Welcome!

For many years, the Emerald Isle Fire Department has offered specially designed beach wheelchairs for use by individuals on the beach strand.  The beach wheelchairs are equipped with special wheels and components that enable them to operate on the sandy beach, and the program is extremely popular and greatly appreciated by our visitors that need them to more fully enjoy the beach experience.  The beach wheelchairs are available free of charge on a first-come, first-served basis for daily use, and all 7 of the Town's chairs are heavily used.

Many of the Town's existing chairs are more than 10 years old, and it's becoming more and more difficult to maintain and repair the chairs.  Each specially-designed chair costs approximately $3,000.  The Town is now accepting donations from individuals or businesses interested in (partially) sponsoring the purchase of new beach wheelchairs for this program, and donations can be remitted to the Emerald Isle Fire Department by contacting Fire Chief Bill Walker at 252-354-2445 or bwalker@emeraldisle-nc.org.  Thank you for your support!

New Food Vendor Program Planned for Summer 2016

For the first time, the Town will allow Emerald Isle food establishments to offer lunch items, drinks, snacks, and desserts for sale at the Town's two regional beach access facilities during summer 2016.  Beginning in May, two vendors will be set up at each facility (the Eastern Ocean Regional Access located near mile marker 15 on NC 58, and the Western Ocean Regional Access located adjacent to The Islander Suites) on select summer days.

The goals of this program are  1) to provide additional convenience for patrons of these facilities,  2) to provide additional business opportunities for Emerald Isle food establishments, and  3) to generate additional revenue for the Town (all proceeds from this new program will be reinvested in future improvements at these two facilities).  The program is open only to existing food establishments with a brick-and-mortar presence in Emerald Isle, and Emerald Isle food establishments must apply no later than 12 noon on February 29 in order to be considered for the 2016 summer season.  To learn more about the program and secure an application, please visit

http://www.emeraldisle-nc.org/new-regional-beach-access-food-vendor-opportunities .

New Flood Insurance Rate Maps Expected This Spring

The NC Floodplain Mapping Program, on behalf of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, has been working in recent years to update the official flood insurance rate maps used in Emerald Isle. The new maps are nearly complete, and will be released to the public in spring 2016.

Overall, the new maps are expected to be favorable for Emerald Isle as a whole, and will hopefully reduce flood insurance premium costs and regulatory burden for many Emerald Isle property owners. There will, however, likely be some property owners that are negatively impacted by the new maps, and the Town will be publicizing this information when the new maps are released in spring 2016. Please remain attentive to this issue to determine the specific impact on your property.  For more questions about the new flood maps when they are released, please contact Josh Edmondson, Town Planner, at jedmondson@emeraldisle-nc.org .

New Sidewalk Stubs Installed at Busy Intersections

In an effort to improve pedestrian safety, the Town recently installed new sidewalk stubs at two busy intersections in Emerald Isle.  The new sidewalk stubs have been added on both sides of the entrance to Emerald Plantation Shopping Center and on both sides of Mangrove Drive near K&V Plaza and CVS.  The new stubs provide a safer connection from the Town's NC 58 bicycle path and sidewalk into these commercial centers.


Mayor and Commissioners Hard at Work on Important County Boards

In addition to their role in setting the overall direction and specific policy for the Town of Emerald Isle, the Town's elected officials serve on several other County boards that have a significant impact on the Town of Emerald Isle and the entire surrounding area.  Their service contributes to the overall quality of life in Carteret County, and also insures that Emerald Isle's interests are represented on these important County boards.

Mayor Eddie Barber serves on the Carteret County Tourism Development Authority, Carteret County Transportation Committee, and the Down East Rural Planning Organization.  Mayor Pro-Tem Floyd Messer serves as Chair of the Carteret Community College Foundation Board, and Commissioner Maripat Wright serves as Chair of the Carteret County Public Library Board. Commissioner Jim Normile serves on the Carteret County Economic Development Council and the Carteret County Beach Commission.  Each of these organizations demands significant additional time from each, and their service is greatly appreciated!

2016 Controlled Deer Hunt Complete

The Emerald Isle Police Department has completed the 2016 controlled deer hunt.  EIPD officers removed a total of 35 deer from the Emerald Isle population during January, consistent with the NC Wildlife Resources Commission's recommendation to remove 30 - 50 deer this year.  More than 900 lbs. of deer meat has been donated to the Hope Mission in Morehead City and used to feed the hungry in our county.

Sign Up Now for EIPD's New "R U OK?" Program

The Emerald Isle Police Department has implemented the new "R U OK?" program to provide regular automated welfare checks on individuals in Emerald Isle who request the service. Participants in the "R U OK" program will receive a regular automated phone call at the time and frequency requested, and if the person does not acknowledge the call then the person's family members will be notified and, if necessary, EIPD will respond to check on the individual's welfare. To sign up for the new program, please contact the Emerald Isle Police Department at 252-354-2021.

Don't Miss the 2016 Emerald Isle St. Patrick's Festival - Friday, March 11 and Saturday, March 12!

Please join us for Emerald Isle's signature event on Friday, March 11 and Saturday, March 12 at Emerald Plantation Shopping Center!

The 2016 event includes amusement rides from 5 pm - 10 pm on Friday, March 11, a kickoff concert (Hip Pocket) from 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm on Friday, March 11, and the traditional live music, kids rides, arts and crafts vendors, specialty foods, beer tent, and much more from 9 am - 6 pm on Saturday, March 12.

Special thanks to Transportation Impact and all of our great local sponsors for helping to make this event better than ever!  We are expecting crowds in excess of 20,000 people in Emerald Isle for the 25th annual event!

Summer Job Fair - March 2!

The Summer Job Fair (sponsored by the Emerald Isle Parks and Recreation Department and Carteret Community College) will be held on Wednesday, March 2 from 4 pm - 7 pm at the Emerald Isle Community Center.  The job fair will feature employers who need additional help during the busy summer months, and is a great opportunity for high school students, college students, retirees, and anyone else looking for a seasonal job.  For more information, or to be a representing employer, please contact Program Supervisor Sarah Cutillo, at 252-354-6350 or scutillo@emeraldisle-nc.org.

Emerald Isle Marathon, Half-Marathon, and 5K Races! - Saturday, April 9

The 3rd annual Emerald Isle Marathon, Half-Marathon, and 5K Races will be held on Saturday, April 9 at the Western Ocean Regional Access.  The full Marathon begins at 6:15 am, followed by the Half-Marathon at 8:15 am, and the 5K race begins at 8:30 am.  The 2015 races attracted nearly 1600 runners and raised $50,000 for heart charities and the Emerald Isle bike path, and we hope to surpass those totals in 2016!  The 2016 races will benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and the Emerald Isle bike path.  Start your training now, and sign up at http://www.emeraldislerun.com/ .

Carteret Arts Forum - Next Event

The Carteret Arts Forum (CAF) continues to offer a variety of great programming, including a performance by "Grains of Time", a men's a capella group from North Carolina State University, on Sunday, February 21 at 3:30 pm at the Carteret County Theatre in Morehead City.  For more information, and a complete lineup of upcoming CAF events, please visit http://www.carteretartsforum.com/products-services .

Purchase Your Own Emerald Isle Logo / Nice Matters T-Shirt!

The Town has received a very positive response to the new Emerald Isle logo and the new "Nice Matters" tag line.  If you'd like to purchase a t-shirt with the new logo and tag line, please visit the Town Administration Building at 7509 Emerald Drive.  T-shirts are $15 each, and are available now for purchase. Show your EI pride!

The Town's Public Works Department maintains a total of 46 miles of public streets in Emerald Isle.  All streets in the Town are maintained by Public Works, with the exception of those serving various private subdivisions and NC 58 (which is maintained by NCDOT).

Did You Know?

The Town's Public Works Department maintains a total of 46 miles of public streets in Emerald Isle.  All streets in the Town are maintained by Public Works, with the exception of those serving various private subdivisions and NC 58 (which is maintained by NCDOT).

Posted by Rhonda Ferebee Thursday, February 4, 2016 8:57:00 AM