It's Tuesday June 18, 2013
Oriental’s approach to killing weeds is getting more attention this spring.
Several residents have complained about spraying in places and ways they thought should be off limits — such as near the water’s edge, before rains. In one instance, a Town crew sprayed a curbside garden that would be abloom with coreopsis and other flowers this time of year. Instead, it is dead. One question being asked is why the Town doesn’t give notice of herbicide sprayings as it does for mosquito spraying. Some of this may be addressed by the Tree Board — now that the Town Board has asked the Tree Board to weigh in on the Town’s herbicide and pesticide policy. Reader Pat Bullis writes about her concern over the type of herbicides – Atrazine and Roundup – that are being used:
Oriental welcomes boaters to tie up to its Town Dock for free for up to 48 hours. The idea is that by providing that option, boaters will visit town and contribute to the local economy. The time limit gives other boaters a chance to do the same. Oriental’s anchorage, near the harbor entrance, has no time limit. Recently, a few boats have remained anchored there for months. That prompts this letter from reader Gil Fontes:... read more »»
When the NC Senate voted along party lines to pass its version of the budget on May 23, the measure included a mandate to impose tolls on all ferries in NC. Pamlico County Senator Norman Sanderson voted with his party — the GOP — for the budget, despite the tolls it calls for. Sandersons’ aide says he did speak on the Senate floor against the tolling provision, but voted for the budget because “overall” it was a good one. That move sparked several letters, from Jim Barton, John Deal, and Al Privette.... read more »»
As reported on TownDock last week, Bob Maxbauer will be stepping down as Town Manager on June 30 and plans to run for a seat on the Town Board.
He is also pitching the current Town Board to give him a job running the Town’s water plant and overseeing repairs there in the new fiscal year starting July 1. Maxbauer claims it would be cheaper to use him and Public Works crews than to pay “$40-$50-$60 an hour” for outside labor. However, it would cost the town to pay for his plan; Maxbauer proposes that the Town Board raise the budget’s line item for Public Works salaries to $160,000, up from the $128,000 the Town Board had pencilled in for next year’s budget. He also proposes a water rate hike of around 10% for water customers.
That scenario brought in this letter from Gail Good.... read more »»
As reported on May 16, Oriental’s Town Manager has proposed that the Town Board levy a property tax hike of 3 cents per $100 valuation. to pay the Town’s legal fees in the Cox v. Oriental lawsuit. (The Town Board has since penciled in a 1 mil rate hike.) Resident Dave Cox has sued over the Town for giving up two waterfront rights of way in the Chris Fulcher land swap. (The gist of his case: that towns can’t give up rights of way held in public trust.) The prospect of the tax hike prompted Joe Mattea to write.... read more »»
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The NC Senate gave its final approval to SB58 which would raise boat registration fees across the state to finance dredging on some inlets near the ocean. That scenario caused an outcry. Pamlico Senator Norman Sanderson, who co-sponsored the bill, voted against its final passage.
Carolyn Howell wrote in..
“On July 1, those taking the local commuter ferries will have to pay a toll – $4 on the Minnesott-Cherry Branch ferry and $10 per car and driver on the Bayview-Aurora ferry. That’s because of a budget bill passed two years ago — which local legislator Norman Sanderson voted for — which called for the tolls as a way to generate $5 million more per year. Last month, the NC DOT began installing the toll booths that will go in to use unless some alternative bills — one to do away with all tolls on all NC ferries, the other to apply tolls to all ferries, which could reduce the price of the Neuse and Pamlico River ferries. The toll booths caught the attention of one of those commuters, JM Smith who lives just outside Oriental…..”... read more »»
A cruising crew once in Oriental check in from a few thousand miles away.... read more »»
At the Oriental Town Board’s Thursday March 28 Agenda Meeting, several Commissioners raised concerns about the Town’s budget and an as-yet unreceived payment of $76,000 in Hurricane Irene FEMA money from the State. The Town Manager, Bob Maxbauer, wants funds shifted from the Town’s General Fund to make up for that. Commissioners Barbara Venturi, Warren Johnson and Michelle Bessette suggested some belt-tightening. Johnson said he’d heard rumors that Maxbauer wanted to hire a third police officer, which Johnson said should not happen given the hole in the budget. Maxbauer accused Johnson of “emoting” and making “rash statements.” When Johnson asked if it were true that 7 people were now working in the Public Works Department, Maxbauer said, “I don’t have the count.” This prompted Martha Gail Good to write in….... read more »»
State Senator Norman Sanderson of Arapahoe has co-sponsored Senate Bill 58 which would increase the fees for recreational boat registration by as much as 10 times over.(See TownDock.net story, here) Boats of 40 feet or longer would pay $150 per year. (Currently the flat rate for registration is $15 per year.) Under the proposal, documented boats would no longer be exempt from such fees.The funds raised would go toward the Shallow Draft Inlet Dredging Fund, though the bill does not state what inlets would benefit. The bill has drawn sharp criticism in Oriental – the Sailing Capital of NC – and beyond. Writing in, are Jim Barton, Tom Lathrop…... read more »»
Norman Sanderson represents Pamlico, Craven and Carteret counties in the NC Senate, after serving one term in the NC House. In his freshman year, 2011, Sanderson voted twice for a budget that imposed the ferry toll, which his constituents continue to try to fend off two years later. (As reported last year, Sanderson said that he couldn’t be ‘that kind of politician’ who would have asked his party’s leadership to stop the tolls for his district.) This year, Sanderson has co-sponsored Senate Bill 58 which would increase boat registration fees as much as 10 times over in order to finance a dredging fund that would not appear to pay for any projects in Pamlico County. The Senator’s actions have sparked some comment from Carolyn Howell, Charles C. Garrett…... read more »»
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