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Special Town Meeting Summary - March 30, 2020
Visitors restricted, online payment fees waived
March 30, 2020

onday morning, March 30, The Town Board, Mayor, and Town Manager met to discuss Governor Roy Cooper’s Stay At Home order and any additional considerations for the people of Oriental.

town hall sign In attendance were Mayor Sally Belangia, Commissioner David White, Commissioner Charlie Overcash, Commissioner Allen Price, Commissioner Dianne Simmons, Commissioner Martin Barrow, and Town Manager Diane Miller.

All present observed social distancing requirements. Though the meeting was technically open to the public, the public was encouraged to watch from home. The meeting was streamed live on TownDock.net, and is available at the end of the article.

In a meeting that lasted over an hour, the board reviewed and updated the regulations of the March 17 Town of Oriental State of Emergency (SOE). Their decisions are recorded in the SOE Amendment #1.

Also addressed were visitors who do not own a home or boat in the area, the payment of water fees, enforcement of the amendment, and businesses who will deliver to those in self-isolation.

Town Manager Miller said that Pamlico County has adopted the Stay At Home executive order as issued by NC Governor Cooper’s office, with no other amendments or additions. This amendment only affects Oriental within town limits.

The amendment goes into effect tonight, Monday, March 30 at 5p. Visitors, nonresident property owners, and transient boaters who arrived before the effective time are not in violation of the amendment.

Public Facilites
• Public restrooms will remain open to the public; they are being cleaned every day.
• The fishing pier at Lou Mac Park will be closed; there is not enough room to keep the required 6 ft distance
• Public docks – town docks 1 and 2, at Hodges Street and near the Oriental Marina & Inn, and the dinghy dock on Water Street – are open to public use. The small boat ramp on Midyette Street Remains open.
• Public parks are open, but playground equipment is closed. Chairs and tables will also be temporarily removed from the parks.

Transients and Visitors
• Visitors – anyone coming to Oriental from elsewhere, homeowners or otherwise, – must self-isolate during their stay, up to 14 days.
• Non-resident visitors arriving by water must self-isolate during their stay, up to 14 days. They may call for groceries, parts, and other goods to be delivered to the docks for pickup. Information for local businesses who deliver will be posted at the docks.
• Non-resident property owners, those who have boats or second homes here, are required to self-isolate during their stay, up to 14 days. There are several businesses that will deliver to those in self-isolation. The link to those businesses at the end of the article.
• Travel through or to Oriental for essentials – consistent with Governor Cooper’s Stay at Home Executive Order #121 – is allowed.

For example: If visitors arrive (by car or boat) and plan to stay for a few days, they must self-isolate in their home, boat, or hotel room for those few days and have food and goods delivered. If visitors arrive (by car or boat) and plan to stay for three weeks, they must self-isolate the first 14 days in their home, boat, or hotel room and have food and goods delivered. After the self-isolation period is up, they make move about in accordance with Governor Cooper’s Stay At Home Executive Order #121.

Payment of Water Fees
• Water bills can be paid online for free; the Town of Oriental will absorb the transaction fee to make this easier.
• Water bills can also be paid by check or money order. Cash is no longer an accepted form of payment as it must all be cleaned before being processed. Money orders can be bought at the Post Office.

• Persons in violation of the order shall be guilty of a class 2 misdemeanor.

The regulations in Amendment #1 to the Town of Oriental State of Emergency declaration take effect Monday, March 30, at 5p. They will remain in effect until April 30, with the exception of the water fees, which are in effect until June 10.

Relevant Links
Town of Oriental State of Emergency, issued 3-17-20
Amendment #1, issued 3-30-20
Amendment FAQs
Additional FAQs
Local Businesses That Deliver

The video of the livestream is available below: Bandwidth was limited during the meeting, and as a result there are moments where video and audio quality is less than ideal. TownDock.net will work with Town Hall to insure cleaner video in the future.

Posted Monday March 30, 2020 by Allison DeWeese

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