Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Watch Currituck County Commissioner Candidate Forum

Whether you can vote on not in Currituck County, you may want to know who the players are. There are several candidates running for Currituck County Commissioner. A candidate’s forum sponsored by the Currituck Chamber of Commerce was held recently and can be viewed by going here.

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Currituck to hold candidates forum April 17

While many of the Carova Corner readers do not have any voting power in the County, decisions made by our elected officials certainly impact all property owners the same. For those more active, you may want to attend a candidate forum later this month. There will also be a broadcast of the forum that I will attempt to get my hands on and maybe even upload to this blog if I can get a 9 year old to help me. Below if the Daily Advance article with the date and times.

Monday, April 07, 2008

Currituck residents will get a chance next week to question candidates for the county board of commissioners on the ballot in next month's Democratic and Republican primaries.

The Currituck Chamber of Commerce will host a "Meet the Candidates Night" at the Currituck County Middle School auditorium Thursday, April 17, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Shannon Kinser, Chamber president, said the forum will feature the eight candidates in contested races for four open seats on the commission board.

"There are a lot of new people on the ballot this year," she said. "I think it's important for folks to be able to make an informed decision, to come out and ask questions, and hear what candidates have to say."

The invited candidates include Stanley D. Griggs and William Carlton Etheridge Sr., two Democrats seeking the new at-large seat on the commission board. Also invited are Oswald Vance Aydlett Jr. and Keith Charles Hill, two Republicans seeking the new District 1 seat; incumbent Commissioner Ernie Bowden and Michael Cherry, two Democrats seeking the new District 1 seat; and Jerry W. Wright and Roy Lee Etheridge, two Democrats seeking the new District 2 seat.

Each candidate will be introduced, and will then be asked questions submitted to a moderator from the audience.

Kinser said community participation is essential to insuring a successful forum.

"This open forum will provide Currituck County citizens with an opportunity to question and evaluate those running for office," she said.

Under the forum guidelines, the questions may not be directed at any particular candidate. The forum will be aired on the local government channel at least once prior to the election.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Wildlife refuge closed for bomb hunt

Officials checking for unexploded ordnance

As reported in the Daily Advance by JOHN HENDERSON, Staff Writer, about the Army Core of Engineers combing the Refuge:

Saturday, April 19, 2008

The Currituck National Wildlife Refuge has expanded an area closed to the public as officials hunt for potential explosives from an old Navy bombing range.

The area includes the Monkey Island tract of the federal refuge north of Corolla.

The Currituck National Wildlife Refuge has closed an area of the refuge (shown in red) as officials hunt for possible explosives from an old Navy bombing range.

A contracting firm has been hired to look for unexploded ordnance, and officials aren't sure what, if anything, will be found.

"It's very old," Mike Bryant, the project leader for the refuge, said of the refuge area where the contractor will be checking for ordnance. "I'm not sure if it was from World War II or later. But the Army Corps of Engineers has the responsibility for investigating and cleaning up sites. They have issued a contract to do some of that work on that land."

Bryant said the public is prohibited from driving through the area right now, and he hopes that people who see the contractors' vehicles driving up to that area to look for explosives don't follow them.

Expanding the closed area "is for the safety of the public," Bryant said. "There could be everything from fifty-caliber bullets in the sand, to small practice bombs. The stuff was dropped, who knows how many years ago, long before refuge was established in the '80s. We were simply made aware that part of this refuge had been part of this old gunner bombing range."

The expanded closed area of the refuge will now start 1 mile north of Corolla, and continue north approximately 750 yards. The area, from the leading edge of the primary dune westward to the Currituck Sound, will remain closed to the public until further notice, according to a press release.

The vehicle access portion on the beach will be unaffected by the closure, but motorists need to use caution as surveyors with equipment may be present on the beach after the project starts Monday, the release states.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Carova Beach Park & Boat Ramp

UPDATE 4-23-08

In my quest to obtain real-time, first-hand information about the 4WD area, I went straight to the source and once again called on Tab Winborne, local builder and general contractor for the Carova Beach Park and Public Boat Ramp for an update. His detailed response is below:

The Park is moving along.

The split face concrete masonry foundation and below grade walls are completed. The cells will eventually be filled solid with concrete & #5 rebar installed from the footing to the roof. It will be the most solid building in Carova.
The select fill is completed below grade and the electrical/ plumbing rough-in has been completed.
We anticipate the slab and some walks to be completed next week.
The masons will return to complete the walls once the slab is completed.

The Bulkhead is completed.

Picnic Shelters:
Our framers have completed the framing of the picnic shelters. They are heavy timer constructed but still have some gentle details on the rafters.

I attach some details for the building and site.

We anticipate the major permit required by CAMA any day. This permit will allow us to begin work on the walkways around the bulkhead, the boat ramp, boat dock and the sidewalks in the Area of Environmental Concern. The process is lengthy but there are several Governmental Agency's which have our design under review.

Tab Winborne
Tab Winborne Corporation
757 237 2802

UPDATE 2-3-2008: Carova Beach Boat Ramp And Park
In a recent email from contractor and local 4WD area builder, Tab Winborne, he stated that the park should be completed in the Spring of 2008. The bulk head is finished and the building should start next week. The ramp and walkways require a special permit and it is currently under review. For further details, you can email Tab directly.

Original Post
Construction is underway for the public boat ramp and park in Carova Beach! The park falls under the jurisdiction of the Currituck County Parks & Rec Dept. The most recent article on the park I have found is here. The County obtained the land when the Wild Horse Estates subdivision was developed and received a $250,000 grant from the State to construct the park on the Southern-most canal in the Carova area. According to John Cece, CAMA officer in Elizabeth City, the county has not yet applied for a permit to dredge the canal, particularly an area known locally as the 'cattle crossing', where depths and winds can render access impossible. It is my understanding they will be applying for this permit further along in the project. For a plat of the proposed park (subject to change), click here.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Great Wild Horse Video

The Corolla Wild Horse Fund has put together a fantastic slideshow, entitled "The Voice" for Currituck County's Mascots, the Corolla Wild Horses. Now restricted to the 4WD area of Carova, it is evident that their survival is paramount to maintaining the unique character and living history of the Northern Outer Banks. Enjoy. Special thanks to the Corolla Wild Horse Fund.


Friday, April 18, 2008

New Update on Mid-Currituck Bridge. First ever NC Public/Private Partnership

The NC Turnpike Authority has just updated their website with some interesting and new data regarding the Mid-Currituck Bridge. The NCTA is soliciting bids from investors and contractors to partner up with the state. Their release can be read here. For a copy of their Final Purpose and Statement with all the details, click here.

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NC Turnpike Authority updates website with information on Mid Currituck Bridge
After a series of three public meetings, the NC Turnpike Authority has posted all of the handouts, aerial images with traffic-flow scenarios, comment forms, etc.. on their website. Be sure to click on newsletters/documents. It is a very good site and descriptive read without a lot of opinion around the factual data.

Related article regarding the toll figures and lifespan.
Related article featuring local response to the Bridge.
Related article on cost estimates and bridge history.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Community Task Force Formed For Carova Beach Area

In a recent email, I asked Charlie Pool, member of the newly formed Community Task Force in Carova Beach, to briefly detail the goal of the Task Force as it pertains to the 4WD off-road area. His response on April 9th is below:

Briefly, the task force is presently working with Dan Scanlon, our county manager, in a effort to improve beach safety and road conditions in the four wheel drive area. We are researching several avenues to accomplish our goals and at this point we are waiting for legal assistance from the county attorney, researching a variety of methods on our own, and Dan Scanlon is in the process of researching methods the county may assist in accomplishing our goals. I have a good feeling we will soon be able to implement some noticeable improvements to road conditions as well as beach safety. Our next meeting with Dan Scanlon will be in about two weeks.

It certainly is refreshing to see a group of dedicated locals working to improve the off road area and keep it safe and enjoyable. I will report more on this issue as I learn of it.