Holden Beach Board Hires Consultant To Study Water Safety itv douc; RIHTKR Reading to the recent drowning of four visitors. Holden Beach offi cials have hired a marine safety consultant to come up with options for a safety program. Preston H. Colby of Seabring, Ha., a nationally-known water search and res cue instructor and trainer, will develop alterna tives that would best serve Hold cn Beach and also provide es timated costs and training methods. ? ot.in Commission ers, concerned about water safety as a result of the drownings, have agreed to pay up to S3,(XX) for Colby's services. They discussed water safety during a meeting last Thursday that was continued Mon '!.??? VHI) ? Three Greensboro men drowned May 28 after a fishing boat sank off Shallotte Inlet. A 12-year-old boy from Knightdalc drowned in the surf at Holden Beach July 4. Mayor John Tandy said Monday thai ihe town has been going "by the seat of our britches" in ihe past. Although police officers and volun leers have done ihcir best, he said water rescue efforts have not been well coordinated. Colby taught a water rescue course over the weekend at Ocean Isle Beach. Two Holden Beach po lice officers and several fire and res cue squads members look the class. He is director of Public Safety Water Rescue, serves as a U.S. Merchant Marine officer and as di rector of Florida's Tactical Under water Team. Colby said his preliminary report for Holden Beach would be done in two weeks and the final report would be completed within a month. On Monday, however. Colby told town board members that there isn't any one step the town could take to solve the island's water safety prob lems. "There's no simple answer. If there was I wouldn't be here." For starters. Colby said the town needs to improve access to the bciivh Tor emergency vchiclcs unci educate the public about water safe ty He suggested the town have at least one accessway every mile where it can get vehicles on the strand. "If you can't get access to the beach you can't do any rescue," he said. Town officials said the lack of "/ do not recommend you jump into a lifeguard program without thinking long and hard about what it would do ? Preston Colby Marine Safety Consultant public accessways an<J the en croaching sea limit the amount of gnergency accessways the town can provide. "We just have a problem with limitation of space and how high the tide gets." Commissioner Bob Buck said. Colby said ocean front property owners will have to give the town land for accessways if they think water safety is a problem. Town officials and Colby agreed I hat educating people about the po tcnual dangers of ocean swimming ?? nulil nr^t'Ant ar<'iHnntc thnn ? ?V/UIU j'l V ? Vtlt HIV'1 V UWIUVMIvJ WlUli anything else. "There's no question that it's needed, and no question it will help." Commissioner Buck said. Putting signs at every beach ac cessway. including safety lips in rental packets and getting the cablc company to run public scrvicc an nouncements arc among ways to rd ucalc people, Colby said. Buck said parents should start teaching their children to respect the ocean when they are toddlers. "It's tragic, but people don't understand ocean currents." Mayor Pro Tcm Gloria Barrett said some children think the ocean is the same as a swimming pool and don't know about the waves and currents. To improve the training of local emergency personnel, commission ers voted Monday to pay up to S201) to send members of the fire depart merit umu rcscuc s(|Uuu to u Wcitc r safety class in Morchcad City. Volunteers Doug Todd and Keith Swaycr, who is serving on the town's water safety committee, will be able to instruct police officers af ter completing the course. Summer Lifeguards? At their session last Thursday, commissioners discussed Ihe nossi of hiri-.g lifeguards lor the re mainder of the summer. Interim Town Manager Gus Ulrich said it would cost S6.100 to hire and equip three lifeguards to protect the beach adjacent to the re gional parking lot under the bridge through Labor Day. The cost of protecting that stretch of beach from June I through Labor Day was estimated at 513,100. That covers two lifeguards on duty from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. seven days a week. Liability, and not cost, was the major concern of town officials as they discussed the lifeguard pro gram. Ulrich said the town's general liability insurance would cover the service. Town Attorney Kenneth Camp bell said it is legal for the town to provide lifeguards at designated ar eas without protecting the entire beach. But he warned that the town could be held responsible for drownings if it hires lifeguards. "As you undertake to provide services you undertake liability." Several board members said they were worried about the town being held liable if somebody drowned while swimming outside a protected swimming area. As a comparison, Ruck said mn. nicipal fire departments aren't al lowed to light I ires outside the city limits. The same would be true with lifeguards m a designated swim ming area. "You're going U) have one heck of a time explaining why that life guard couldn't offer protection 4(H) leet away," Buck said. "We're gonna catch the living devil." Commissioner Kcnner Amos said homeowners would probably com plain if the town provided life guards in one area but not in front of everyone's house. Rescinding to a question from the board. Colby said lifeguard pro grains are usually difficult to get started and maintain when towns hire high school and college stu dents for the summer. "I do not recommend you jump into a lifeguard program without thinking long and hard about what it would do," he said. At most of the major beaches in Florida, Colby said lifeguards also serve as emergency medical techni cians and have arrest powers so they can control activity on the strand. Even with lifeguards protecting the beach, commissioners agreed last week that parents need to watch out for their own children and swimmers need to use common SCHSC. ADOPTION EXPECTED AUG. 5 Subdivision Ordinance Avoids New Hearing BY TERRY POPE A second public hearing on the county's new subdivision ordinance will not be held, as Brunswick County Commissioners are set to discuss the ordinance Aug. 5. "There has probably been more public input on it than any other or dinance adopted in Brunswick County," said County Manager David Clegg. A public hearing was held on the ordinance in April. Since then, it has undergone major revisions by the Brunswick County Planning Board. Planning Director John Harvey presented the final product to com missioners last week. He said at least 52 people have contributed to the fi nal draft through public hearings, planning board workshops, memos ami phone calls to his office. The planning board has done a mammoth job meeting about four times a month," said Harvey, "offer ing everyone the opportunity to comment." Clegg said Harvey and planning board members did a "good job" in writing the ordinance in layman's terms. Last week, though, he was polishing the language to make the ordinance's provisions and intent still clearer. Harvey told commissioners they would have a difficult lime recog nizing the 31 -page document in its revised state, approximately the 10th draft produced. However, a second public hearing isn't legally required, said Clegg. "That could go on forever," said Clegg. "I think the board of com missioners has got to satisfy them selves that there has been public in put that they think is appropriate." The ordinance will replace one adopted by the county in June 1980. At that time, the county did not have a water system and the ordi nance did not address state stan dards for street right of way require ments and minimum lot sizes. The planning department began work on a new ordinance, but in November 1981 commissioners told the planning board to drop the mat ter. Last year, commissioners re newed an interest in the document and ordered that a new ordinance be drafted. "There are some positions that w ill never be appeased," said Clegg. "It certainly represents more than a meeting of the minds. Hopefully, it's something that everybody can live with." Commissioners say they want the new ordinance to regulate unscrup ulous developers of new subdivi sions. At a public hearing in April, some residents spoke in favor of the ordinance, saying that dirt roads in i ROBIN'S I SWEET SHOPPE I One Day Notice Required For Birthday Cakes Select from... Round or sheet Special pans... Shell, teddy bear, dog, cat, pony, mouse, etc. I MON.-SAT. 8 AM-7 PM 579-0578 HWY 179 -OCEAN ISLE "It certainly represents more than a meeting of the minds. Hopefully, it's something that everybody can live with." ? David Clegg, County Manager iheir neighborhoods cannot be pav ed by the suite because developers initially did not plat enough room for a street right of way. Some local developers argued that the ordinance was too restric tive and would hamper growth in Brunswick County. Commissioner Jerry Jones, said Clcgg, acting as county attorney, would review the ordinance and make any legal changes needed be fore Aug. 5. The board tabled the matter at last week's meeting be cause Commissioner Gene Pinker ton was out of town on business. To pass on first reading, the full board must be present. Dropped from the ordinance is a requirement that developers post a bond or submit a letter of credit to ensure that improvements to a sub division would be made on time. Added was a section requiring the county engineer to inspect im provements at various stages of construction. The engineer will grant a statement of completion to be filed with the planning director and clerk to the board of commis sioners. Clcgg told commissioners he was most concerned about the last page of the ordinance. A section on the final page gives the county manager authority to grant final approval to portions of subdivisions and to allow them to be recorded prior to completion of the required improvements. The developer and county man ager would have to reach an agree ment in such spccial cases, the ordi nance stales. The developer can apply to have up to 50 percent of a subdivision at one time recorded under this spccial clause. "His (Clegg's) opinion was that it looked like it was giving him a greater authority than necessary," said Jones, "and I appreciate him saying that." Among other things the new ordi nance: ?exempts the conveyance of land to heirs; ?exempts transfers of one parcel to family members; ?prohibits reserve strips used to deny traffic connections between properties; ?becomes effective Jan. 1, 1992; ?grandfathers for 12 months pre liminary plats approved under the 1980 ordinance; ?validates preliminary plats for 24 months from date of board approval; ?sets a minimum size for residen tial lots at 7,500 square feet; ?allows smaller lot sizes, but not less than 5,000 square feet, where water and sewer arc available; ?sets minimum depth and width re quirements for lots; ?sets a 60-fcct right of way require ment for subdivision streets serving as connectors to public streets; ?sets a 50-fect right of way require ment for internal streets in subdivi sions; ?enforces minimum standards of grading, drainage, sub-base, base and paving to DOT standards for all streets; ?allows subdivisions of 10 acres or less and acccssible by unpaved streets via abutting properties to be exempt from paving requirements, but a warning of private responsibil ity for maintenance and upkeep of roads is to be posted on the plat; ?establishes minimum building set back lines of 25 feet in front; 7 1/2 feel on side yards; 15 feet on street sides; and 10 feci on rear yards; ?requires major subdivisions, of six lots or more, to connect to the coun ty water system if wuiiin 1 ,0(X) feet by roadway; ?requires minor subdivisions, of five lots or less, to connect to the county water system if within 250 feet; ?requires that 75 percent of lots in a preliminary plat be scrvicablc by a sewer system or on-site wastewater system or carry a disclaimer indicat ing which lots arc not suitable for human habitation; ?requires a subdivider to: 1) file a statement guaranteeing for 12 months any improvements made to a subdivision in order to obtain a fi nal approval from the county engi neer; 2) to perform work as neces sary to correct dcfccts which exist 12 months after the date of the statement of completion; and 3) to perform corrcctivc work within 120 days of having been served written notice of deficiencies by the county engineer. Violation of the subdivision ordi nance is a misdemeanor. The county has the right to bring action for an injunction to block the illegal trans fer of property or to seek an order of compliance, Clegg said. The county has never had to en force provisions of the existing sub division ordinance, said Clegg, and he doesn't expect to have to do so under the new ordinance. "It cer tainly explains much clearer what they should do," he said, "so there should be less confusion." Lightning Kills Golfer (Continued From Page 1-A) him at a condominium at Brick Landing Plantation. "Wc really don't have any de tails," said Barbcc. He said he didn't know if the foursome had sought shelter or was playing when the accident occurred. Officials also weren't sure if lightning stmck Harbcn directly or hit a tree or other object first. "We're still unsure of that," White said. "His friends left the hospital immediately after they found out he was dead. They were visibly upset." White said the lightning-related death is the first since he became coroner 5 1/2 years ago. There have been at least two others this year in North Carolina. In 1990, North Carolina ranked second in the nation in the number of deaths caused by lightning, ac cording 10 the N.C. Department of Crime Control and Public Safety. Florida was first in deaths. There were five such fatalities last year in North Carolina, includ ing three on golf courses, and 12 in juries. All of the deaths and injuries occurred between April and early September. Lightning was responsible for the greatest number of weather-related deaths in the state last year ? ahead of tornadoes, floods and down bursts. State public safety officials rec ommend that people taking cover outdoors during lightning storms avoid highly-conductive objects such as single trees and utility poles. People indoors should stay away from electrical outlets. Appliances such as televisions and stereos also should be unplugged to decrease the chance of fire. New Group Forms At Sunset Beach (Continued From Page 1-A) said Walters. "Sunset Beach is due for a lot of changc. We hope this group can be a positive force behind these changes." Morrison said working to make sure the town has adequate infras tructure to handle future growth will be one of the group's concerns ? streets, water and sewer and emergency services, as well as speaking up on issues such as plan ning and zoning. "We don't want anybody to come down and say you can't do any more of this until you do something else," said Morrison, citing recent lightening of the town's sign ordi nance as one example. New people moving into the area expect more, he indicated. "They're not going to put up with some of the things that have gone on in the past. Things are going to have to change." Another example he cited arc res idents' concerns about low water pressure. An enlarged county water line in ihe Sunset Reach area still won't resolve the problem entirely, at least for those who live on or vis it the island. The problem is getting a larger line across the waterway to the is land, he said. Future options could include suspending such a line from a high-rise bridge proposed by the N.C. Department of Transportation. The Sunset Beach Taxpayers Association formed approximately 11 years ago in opposition to the bridge and to other types of changes that could result in greater "density of development" at Sunset Beach, particularly on the island itself. The group recently succccdcd in delay ing construction of the bridge pend ing an new environmental impact study. But providing the infrastructure necessary to handle anticipated growth is essential, according to Morrison. "It takes time and it takes plan ning," he said. "We can't just sit back. We need to look to the future and make this a better place to live." Judge Clears Police Chief District Court Judge D. Jack Hooks Jr. has ruled that contempt charges should not be brought against Shallottc Policc Chief Rodney Gausc. When Gause failed to appear in Brunswick County District Court April 24, charges that he filed against a suspect in 1989 were dismissed. Hooks ordered that Gausc appear in District Court to show cause as to why he should not face contempt charges. The judge's ruling clears Gausc of any wrongdoing in the case. Gausc said Friday that he was on vacation the week of the trial in question. "I've always had the utmost respect for Chief Judge Jack Hooks Jr. and his court," said Gause. The case involved charges filed by Gause and Shallottc Patrolman Roy Kohler against Anthony Craig Smith, 26, of Route 6, Shallotte, in 1989 for possession of non-tax paid alcoholic beverages. Smith was accused of having in his possession a half-gallon of moon shine whiskey on Feb. 5, 1989, according to tlte arrest warrant. Three times. Smith failed to appear for his trial in District Court, ac cording to documents on file at the Brunswick County Clerk of Court's office. According to Hooks' order, Gausc was issued a subpoena on April 1, 1991 to appear in court April 24 to testify in a case against Smith, who was on the court docket to face 17 driving-related charges. When Gausc failed to appear in court as the prosecuting witness. Assistant District Attorney Greg Komegay asked that the case be contin ued. Hooks denied the motion and issued the show cause order against Gausc. Man Injured In Shooting A Shalloilc man remained hospi talized Tuesday following a shoot ing near Hickman's Crossroads Sunday night. Terry Norris, 37, of Route 4, was shot twice in the chcst by a small caliber handgun, reported Brunswick County Sheriff's Dctectivc Larry Joyncr. The shooting occurred at a resi dence on S.R. 1300 (Ash-Little Riv er Road) around 10:56 p.m., Joyner said. Russell Edward, 33, of Tabor City, was charged Monday night with assault with a deadly weapon with inicni to kill inflicting serious injury, said Joyncr. Norris was shot oncc in the upper chest and again in the lower chest area, Joyner said. He was transported to The Bruns wick Hospital in Supply by ambu lance and later transferred to New Hanover Regional Medical Center in Wilmington, where he was listed in stable condition Monday afternoon. "They had an argument prior to the shooting," said Joyncr. Edward was released from the Brunswick County Jail Monday un der SI 0,000 bond. Normal Conditions In Outlook The Soulh Brunswick Islands area should see normal tempera tures and rainfall over the coming week, Shallotte Point meteorologist Jackson Canady said Tuesday. He predicted temperatures to av erage in the lower 70s at night to around 90 degrees during the day, with three-quarters inch of rainfall. For the period of July 16-22, Canady recorded a maximum high temperature of 92 degrees on both July 21 and 22. The minimum low of 70 degrees occured on J uly 17. An average daily high of 89 de grees combined with an average nightly low of 74 degrees for a daily average temperature of 81 degrees, which is a normal, said Canady. He measured 4.77 inches of rain fall for the period. Dog Observed For Rabies (Continued From Page 1-A) fcncc and also lied so il could be observed for rabies, said Crowder. "It's still being observed," Crow der said Monday. "The dog is healthy. We believe its shots are all up to date." The incident came just days be fore slate officials warned counties to be on the lookout for rabies. A woman who works with ani mals at a nature museum in Char lotte was bitten by a rabid bat July 9. Also, a young boy in Pasquotank County was playing in his back yard wading pool last week when a rabid fox wandered from the woods, entered the pool and bit the child. Both animals were found to be infected with rabies, the N.C. Divi sion of Epidemiology reported. Two rabid raccoons were also found in Gales County, indicating dial a rabies epidemic in Virginia has moved into North Carolina. "That concerns me," said Crow der. "We've known about it for a number of years." The last known case of rabies in Brunswick County occurred about 12 years ago, said Crowder, who has worked for the county health department 16 years. In that case, a young girl was bit ten by a bat, he said. Stale lab tests indicated the bat had been infected with rabies. Rabies is an acute, infectious and often fatal viral disease of most mammals that attacks the central nervous system and is transmitted by the bite of an infected animal. THE BRUNSWICK&KACON Established Nov. 1 , 19C? Telephone 754-6890 Published Every Thursday At 4709 Main Street Shallotte, N.C. 28459 SUBSCRIPTION RATES IN BRUNSWICK COUNTY One Year $10.36 Six Months $5.55 ELSEWHERE IN NORTH CAROLINA One Year $14.80 Six Months $7.90 ELSEWHERE IN U.S.A. One Year $15.95 Six Months $8.35 Second class postage paid at the Post Office in Shallotte, N.C. 28459. USPS 777-780.