In this issue:
- Recap of the regular Village Council meeting.
- An update on annual golf cart registrations.
- Finance Director Zachary Hewitt selected for ECU’s 40 Under 40 leadership award.
- An update from Duke Energy.
Upcoming Events: Village Council retreat (February 18), shredding event (March 7), Badwater Race (March 19).
Reminders: IPC/PO remains closed on Saturdays until further notice, the US Coast Guard’s operating guidelines and restrictions for COVID-19 are still in effect and can be found HERE.
Regular Council Meeting – The Village Council conducted its regular meeting on Tuesday, January 25, at 10:00 a.m. Here is a summary of the information shared and the actions that were taken at this meeting:
As part of the Consent Agenda, the Village Council adopted a resolution accepting the donation of two PVC beach wheelchairs from Jillian’s Jitterbug Inc. with a value of $2,972.18. The Village already has some on hand and they do have some wear and tear. This generous donation will help ensure the Village can offer this equipment to beachgoers and that it is in good condition. If you would like more information about how to borrow this equipment from the Department of Public Safety, go HERE.
Under old business, Village staff gave an update on COVID-19 and recommended no changes to the Village’s current protocol. Masks are currently optional in Village buildings and recommended for unvaccinated persons. The Village will keep this item on the agenda for next month’s meeting for discussion and potential changes. The Village received an update on the Brunswick County Transportation Plan. Current plan documents and additional information about the plan can be viewed HERE. A draft of the plan will be presented to the public and in-person and virtual public input meetings are forthcoming, stay tuned for details.
Under new business, the Village adopted a resolution indicating that the Village wishes to partner with Brunswick County and the Brunswick Blueprint Project that includes a Comprehensive Land Use Plan and a Parks and Recreation Comprehensive Master Plan. The Village dedicated $14,000 to the project’s cost. The County’s planning consultant will be working with Village staff to produce an up-to-date comprehensive plan for the Village which will include community input, standalone maps, demographic data, goals, and action items. Stay tuned for details on upcoming opportunities to provide input on this plan. This plan will need to be in place by July 1, 2022, to meet Chapter 160D of the NC General Statutes.
Mayor Quinn announced that he had received a letter of resignation from Mayor Pro Tem Brown. Brown was not present at yesterday’s meeting. Mayor Quinn read the letter aloud which indicated that he wanted to stay on until he moves away in mid-February but made his resignation effective immediately so that the Village can have a Mayor Pro Tem in place right away to represent Bald Head Island on the Bald Head Island Transportation Authority. The Village Council appointed Councilor Scott Gardner as Mayor Pro Tem. Mayor Quinn announced that the Village Council will likely appoint Brown’s replacement at the next Village Council meeting.
The Assistant Village Manager, Jae Kim, provided some updates here are a few:
RFQ for Landscape Design – The Village issued a Request for Qualification for landscape design services and received three submittals. The landscape design committee will meet to discuss the proposals in order to make a recommendation to the Village Council.
Marina Channel Maintenance – The Village is in contact with its dredging contractor for upcoming maintenance of the marina channel entrance. The Village receives a grant from the State through the Shallow Draft Navigation Channel Dredging fund which pays for 2/3 of the cost of this maintenance. This work is projected to begin within a month.
The Village Manager, Chris McCall, updated the Council on several items. Below are a few details on the information he shared:
ADA Beach Access – The Village continues to work with the Bald Head Association Architectural Review Committee (ARC) to get approval for this project to proceed. The Village has descoped the design and explored alternate locations at the existing emergency accesses.
Stormwater Management – The Village Manager last reported that the Village and the BHI Club had worked together, with some funding assistance from the Club, on a plan to make improvements to the Club’s side of the bypass lagoon. Unfortunately, due to delays of the manufacturer the contractor will not be able to meet the Club’s schedule and Village’s agreed schedule to minimize course play disturbance and this work will need to wait until another off-season period as the front 9 holes will need to be closed during construction. The contractor will be getting the materials needed for the project now so that they are on hand when this project is ready. However, there is no delay to the bypass lagoon construction work on the N Bald Head Wynd side.
New Village Hall – Bids for the construction of the new Village Hall came in higher than expected and the Village will be holding off re-bidding the project until supply issues improve. In the meantime, the Village is looking at ways to accommodate staff. The Village will be working with a design consultant to reconfigure the current space with walls and/or partitions and some new furniture may be purchased that would be used in the new building. The Village Hall was pressure washed and plans are in place to paint the exterior to match the Island Package Center and Post Office.
Potential Wind Energy Areas – The Village has recently submitted two sets of comments to Federal agencies (HERE and HERE) on the proposed WEAs. Village officials will be attending an open house presentation on the visualization of offshore wind in the Wilmington East Offshore Wind Plan this Friday, January 28, 2022, in Southport. The open house is from 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. more information about this event can be found HERE.
Marina Dock and Pier – The Village has received informal bids for the removal and disposal of the old dock and pier at Marina Park which was damaged during Hurricane Isais. The Village has applied for and is expected to receive FEMA funds to replace the dock and pier. The new dock and pier will be constructed in a different location. The new structure will extend straight out from behind kayak rental/restrooms where the temporary floating dock is located. Some materials will likely be salvageable from the damaged structure for use on the new one.
Staff Update – The Village’s Finance Director, Zachary Hewett was selected for ECU’s 40 Under 40 leadership award (more below). All department heads will have completed Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion training by the end of this week, all other staff will follow. The program the Village is using includes follow-up activities to ensure that the lessons learned in the training are being implemented organization-wide.
Conservancy Campus Design – Mayor Quinn indicated that the Village is in discussion with the Conservancy regarding the Village-owned right-of-way in front of the Conservancy which includes the circle drive. This may result in a transfer of ownership so that this area can be better utilized as part of a long-term campus design effort. Village staff will continue to work through the details to include the location of existing utilities.
Transportation System Update – After a Closed Session, the Village Council reconvened in open session and voted unanimously to authorize the Village’s attorneys to file a petition with the North Carolina Utilities Commission requesting that it assert regulatory jurisdiction over the parking lots and barge used in connection with the Bald Head Island Transportation System. The Village has not filed the petition, but has notified Bald Head Island Transportation, Inc., and Bald Head Island Limited LLC that they will be notified of the filing and will be provided a courtesy copy of the petition (view correspondence HERE).
A full account of these meetings can be found in the minutes which are posted HERE. Typically, minutes are posted with the agenda of the next month’s meeting (ex. If you want to read the November meeting minutes, they can be found under the December regular meeting agenda).
Annual Golf Cart Registrations – The Village previously reported a delay in receiving the new registration stickers this year and then indicated that they were in. Please continue to be patient as Village staff works through the backlog to get the stickers out as quickly as possible. Folks who registered their vehicle after December 28th have not been processed as of today. There are approximately 3,500 golf carts on the island at this time.
Public Safety Officers are aware of the delay and enforcement will not be in full effect until it is understood that all who have taken measures to register their vehicles have the new stickers. If you still have not updated your registration(s) please do so now online HERE.
Finance Director Selected for Leadership Award – Zachary Hewett, the Village’s Finance Director and East Carolina University alumnus has been selected to receive a 40 Under Forty Leadership Award from ECU this spring. ECU’s Division of Student Affairs began presenting 40 Under Forty Leadership Awards in April 2015. The honor recognizes emerging leaders who received their start at ECU and those who have used their ECU experiences to make significant impacts in their respective professions, communities, and world. Congratulations Zack!
Duke Energy Update (submitted by Duke Energy) – Duke Energy is working hard to complete a multi-year power grid improvement project that will help harden our system serving Bald Head Island to storms and allow for isolation of outages and remote automatic repairs.
While a lot of the visible work on the island is concluding in the new year, there are important updates to our operating systems taking place now so we can fully leverage these upgrades in the near future.
We appreciate the community’s patience and support as we continue this work in 2022. If you have questions or feedback, you are welcome to contact Danielle Peoples at Danielle.Peoples@duke-energy.com.
The Village receives regular updates from Duke Energy which are shared with our e-newsletter subscribers and posted on the Village’s “Village Projects” webpage HERE.
Village Council Retreat – The Village Council’s annual retreat will take place on February 18, 2022, at 9:00 a.m. it is an all-day event and typically the regular Council meeting is conducted immediately after the retreat topics are covered. This meeting provides important information to the Council and the public about Village operations, initiatives, and long-term projects. It leads to the development of the annual budget and aids the Village Council in deciding funding priorities for the next year. The agenda for the retreat and the regular meeting will be posted HERE. Zoom information for both meetings (same link since they are back-to-back) can be found HERE.
Shredding Event – The next island-wide shredding event is on Monday, March 7, 2022
Tuesday, March 1, 2022. The details on this event are still coming together, but typically a shredding truck is staged at the Marina Park (Old Tent Site) and Island entities and individual homeowners can bring their outdated documents for disposal. A per-box cost is usually determined which covers the barge and the shredding truck. All surplus funds collected are donated to the BHI Conservancy. The Village wishes to thank Claude Pope for organizing this event. The Village is compiling records that qualify for disposal and will be requesting the Village Council to approve the record disposal list at the February regular meeting.
Cape Fear Badwater – The next Cape Fear Badwater Ultra Running Race is scheduled for Saturday, March 19, 2022. This all-day race will take place on several Village wynds and Public Safety will be providing traffic control for this event. Other activities for the participants will be taking place on the Island beginning Friday through Sunday. Approximately 150 runners (registration is capped at 200) from 21 states and 8 nationalities are expected to participate this year. More information about the race can be found HERE.
IPC/PO is closed on Saturdays – The Island Package Center & Post Office remains closed on Saturdays. First-class mail will be delivered to post office boxes every Saturday. We apologize for the inconvenience.
Mask Guidance for Ferries & Trams –The mask guidance that was announced back in September 2021 is still in effect. US Coast Guard guidelines and restrictions require all employees and passengers (except children under the age of 2) wear a mask: 1. While waiting to board the ferry inside the terminal gate area, 2. While boarding the ferry, 3. While inside the ferry cabin, 4. While disembarking the ferry, 5. While riding in trams. Most importantly, social distancing should be practiced at all times.