WATER ISSUE SPURS TALK OF TWO-YFAR TERMS
Shell Point Residents Wont More
IIY IKKKY I'OI'K
Some Shell Point residents say tlicy plan to vote lor
two-year terms lor county commissioners at Tuesday's
Ibey point to their community's water crisis, anil the
lack of a timely county solution, as a need lor more "re
Hob Black, who lives in Riverview, believes his com
iminity has been overlooked by those elected to repre
Since September I WO, Black has attended the
Brunswick County Utility Operations Board meetings
asking for county water. UOB members make recom
mendations to commissioners on water projects.
Black followed the November 1990 elections closely,
carefully listening to candidates for their stand on coun
ty water expansion. During spending cuts by commis
sioners in June, a phut to route a main line down Mt.
Pisgah Church Road to serve the Shell Point and
Civietown communities was dropped from the 1991-92
Sometimes, he -ays, he wonders if anyone is really
"I'm going to vote for the two-year term," said
Black. "1 can't stand around for four more years."
Those who argue for four-year terms say elected offi
cials need time once in office to become familiar w ith
county issues. Persons who argue for two-year terms
say elected officials become better representatives if
they arc not given (he comfort of four years in of fice.
"We need to put that two-year term on them." said
Black. "Then maybe they'll Ik- more responsive. Maybe
if they work a little harder they'll Ik* more responsive to
the people who elect them."
The battle over length of terms began in May. when
State Rep. E. David Redwine intrxluceil House Hill
586 to the N.C. General Assembly. The local bill re
quires voters to decide whether to change the makeup
of the Brunswick County Board of Commissioners and
Board of Education from the existing staggered, four
year terms to two-year terms for all members.
If approved, ail members of lx>th boards would be
elected to two-year terms in 1992 and every two years
thereafter. 11 ic issue is binding and is part of die official
ballot, not part of an optional and non-binding ex it poll.
Voters will not gel the option of choosing two-year
terms lor one board and lour-ycar terms for the oilier.
The Brunswick County Democratic Party voted in
April to ask Redwine to change the length of terms by
legislative action. Brunswick County Republicans, in
control of all live seats on the board of commissioners,
voted in March against two-year terms.
Redwine decided in May to let the voters decide.
"We'll put them back on two-year terms, if that's
what they want." said Ishmael ('had wick, of Shell
(See SI I El. I. I'OINT, Page 2-A)
THE l.? JCK? BEACON
Twenty-ninth Year, Number 52 C?991 THE BAUNSWiCK 8?ACON Shallotte, North Carolina, Thursday, October 31, 1991 50c Per Copy 44 Pages, 3 Sections, 3 Insert
Thousands Attend Festival
STAFF PHOTO BY DOUG ROTTER
The S'.C. Festival By The Sea lured thousands of area residents and visitors last weekend to U olden
Reach, where they enjoyed arts and crafts, food, games and beautiful weather, l.ook inside for festival
Voters To Decide County
Issues And Town Races
Brunswick County voters have
some important decisions to make
between now anil the time they go
to the polls next Tuesday, Nov. 5.
They will l>e asked to decide two
county wide issues and give their
opinion on three others.
Some voters also will be called
on to help fill the 63 seats available
on 18 municipal, hospital and sani
tary district boards. All but one
Brunswick County municipality ?
the Village ol Bald Head ? have
elections slated Tuesday.
In two relerendums, county vot
ers will decide whether to shorten
terms for county commissioners and
school board members from lour to
two years and whether to approve a
county redisricting plan.
An exit poll will allow voters to
Inside This Issue
give their opinions on three other is
sues ? zoning, fire anil rescue tax
districts and a non-partisan school
Brunswick County Board of
Elections Supervisor Lynda Briti is
hesitant to predict turnout for next
"I don't know," she said Tuesday
morning, expressing concern that
having county issues but no county
candidates on the ballots might dis
courage voting by residents outside
"In the precincts that have a mu
nicipality the turnout will be much
larger than in the rural areas," she
predicted. "If I have 20 percent in
my rural precincts I'll be pleasantly
On the municipal front, some of
the most tightly contested races in
the county ilus year are in the South
Holdcn Beach voters will choosc
from two candidates for mayor and
12 candidates for the five scats on
the board of commissioners.
In Shallotlc, voters also have two
people running for mayor and will
ch(H)sc from among nine candidates
to fill four available seats on the
County wide, there are 114 candi
dates running for 63 scats on 16
municipal boards, the Dosher
Hospital Board of Trustees and the
Southeast Brunswick Sanitary
\ Ballot, Exit Poll Asks 5 Sticky Questions
All registered voters in
Bninsvirk County are eligible in
vote next Tuesday to help decide
two issues of coumywide concern.
In addition, tliey may choose to
answer three questions on an op
tional exit poll.
On the official ballot, residents
will decide if members of the
Brunswick County Board of
Commissioners and the Brunswick
County Board of Education should
be clected to two-year or four-year
terms. They will also vote for or
against a plan to redraw the coun
ty's five residency district lines.
The exit poll will ask residents if
they favor a county zoning ordi
nance, if school board elections
should be non-partisan and if ser
vice districts should be created to
fund the county's volunteer fire and
The exit poll will ask residents if
commissioners should "enact a
comprehensive zoning ordinance to
regulate all unincorporated areas of
Brunswick County," to lake effect
on or before Jan. 1 , 1993.
Commissioners have not ordered
a zoning ordinance, and one has
never been wriiien, said County
Manager David Clegg.
"There are pieces of a zoning or
dinance," said Clcgg, "or compo
nents of it."
Zoning establishes districts where
land use is regulated to lessen con
gestion, to secure safety from fire,
to prevent overcrowding, to con
serve the value of buildings and to
encourage appropriate uses of land.
The Brunswick County Planning
Board has been designated as the
planning agency to oversee the
drafting of an ordinance, said
That official appointment came
several years ago when commis
sioners explored the need for a zon
ing ordinance and held public hear
ings on the topic, said Clegg. But
commissioners then instructed the
Planning Department to halt its
"A public hearing would still
have lo be held on the ordinance."
Commissioners appear divid.'d
on zoning. District 4 Commissioner
Frankic Rabon said he believes peo
pic who purchase land should he
able 10 do wiih it as ihey like.
"The lac i is thai subdivision reg
ulations and zoning ordinances are
being used to protect the wealthy,"
said Rabon. "and make it more dif
ficult for the working class and oth
er low income people to buy and
A plan to redraw the county's
residency district lines, according to
population counts from the 1990
U.S. Census, must be approved by
voters or else a new plan must be
drafted and presented to voters.
Commissioners selected a plan
that divides the county into five dis
tricts with an average of 10,197 res
If voters do not approve the plan,
commissioners must call for another
vote. By law, board members must
hold their seats until a plan is adopt
ed. An election cannot be held until
a district plan is chosen, said Clegg.
The districts arc for residency
purposes only, said Clegg. Five
members each are elected to the
school board and board of commis
sioners, one from each district.
(See BALLOT, Page 2-A)
OTHERS LIKE PAVING STANDARDS
Some Think Ordinance May Slow Area Growth
BY TERRY POPK
Some local developers predict
Brunswick County's new subdivision
ordinance will slow area growth.
"People in rural areas are not go
ing to develop any more land," said
Bobby Long, a S hallo tie surveyor.
"I really think it's not in the best in
terest of the county."
The ordinance will require that
all roads in subdivisions, both pri
vate and public, be paved to mini
It was incorrectly reported in
The Brunswick Heacon last week
that paving requirements had
What was dropped from the ordi
nance were N.C. Department of
Transportation paving standards for
private roads in new subdivisions.
They were replaced with a local
standard requiring six inches of co
quina and VA inches of asphalt. All
other DOT requirements for right of
way and drainage were kept.
For new public streets, which arc
built and dedicated to the suite for
maintenance, DOT standards are
Depending on soil types, DOT
requires from 3 A inches to nine
inches of coquina or marl and up to
two inches of asphalt. Roads must
also have a 60-foot right of way.
In Brunswick County, DOT has
chosen "as a maticr of policy" to re
quire seven inches of coquina be
neath two inches of asphalt, "giving
a break in the cost to the develop
ment community," said County En
gineer Robert Tucker.
But not all local developers be
lieve the subdivision ordinance will
spell doom for Brunswick County
growth. The compromise on paving
requirements reached between de
velopers and the county last week
has been praised by some.
"I've said all along that there
should be a paving requirement,"
said Kemp Causey of Calabash. "I
think they've used common sense.
What they've got passed, I sec no
real problem with it, personally."
Causey has developed approxi
mately 7(X) lots in the Shallotte
Township since ll>X4, including The
Village at Calabash. He served as
president of a corporation in Meck
lenburg County lhat developed
around 3.IXX) lots.
In Brunswick County, he has
built an estimated seven miles of
streets using a six-inch base of co
quina and \'A inches of asphalt, the
minimum standards approved by
the county last week.
The streets are three to six years
old, said Causey, "and they are still
in excellent condition."
The planning board had voted
last month thai streets serving fewer
than 25 lots would not have to he
paved, but that collector streets
serving more than 25 lots would
have to meet DOT standards lor
paving. In the final draft, the size of
the subdivision makes no differ
ence; all must meet some minimum
requirement for paving.
Long said the constant changes in
road standards have been confusing.
"They've voted on this thing a
dozen times," said Long.
A public hearing was held in
April, but road standards were re
vised a number of times since then
by the Brunswick County Planning
Board and at the request of Bruns
wick County Commissioners.
Long said he was outside the
conference room at the Oct. 16
planning board meeting when the
board voted to adopt the new road
standards. He had gone to the meet
ing to represent a couple over a
right of way dispute in Ash.
"I think it will be very difficult
for them (developers)," said Long.
"This is what three commissioners
felt like is needed for this county.
"Hut we'll do whatever is re
quired," he said.
To pave at the required standards,
IK inches of asphalt over six inches
of coquina, costs S25 per running
foot, estimated Long.
"Everybody warned a subdivision
ordinance," said Long. "We did not
want one that was more restrictive
than what's allowed in municipali
ties, but that's what we wound up
However, some area municipali
ties do have subdivision ordinances
or minimum street requirements.
The county's ordinance only alloc is
land in unincorporated areas.
"Exum will be more restrictive
than Southport," claimed Long.
"You can do things with land in
Shalloite that you can't do in the ru
Exum is a niral community north
The division of a tract or parcci
of land into two or more lots or
building sites constitutes a subdivi
sion, under the new ordinance. A
rural developer must build a paved
street to serve a two-lot subdivision
under the rules, said Long.
The ordinance will eliminate di
vided medians, said Long, for they
arc not generally allowed under
DOT standards. Developments such
as Sea Trail Plantation that leaves
trees standing in divided roadways
for a scenic effect will no longer be
allowed to when the new ordinance
takes effect Jan. 1 , he added.
"I think we have lost something
with this," said Long.
Towns Vary On Street Rules
Some developers have questioned if Brunswick County's new sub
division ordinance has stricter street requirements than those followed
by area municipalities.
In a poll. The Brunswick Beacon has learned dial area towns have
varying requirements for subdivisions streets within their town limits.
The county's ordinance affects land in unincorporated areas, those
areas outside municipalities.
Some towns, like Shallolte, prohibit private streets in new subdivi
sions and require that all roads be deeded as public and paved to N.C.
Department of Transportation standards.
"That's all it says," said Albert Hughes, Shallolte 's public works di
Brunswick County's new subdivision ordinance requires DOT stan
dards for public streets, which arc those dedicated to the suite for main
tenance. Streets that developers want to keep private must have six
inches of coquina and IK inches of asphalt under the new rules that go
into effect Jan. I .
At Ocean Isle Beach, proposed subdivision plans arc examined by
the town's planning board, which makes a recommendation to town
commissioners. Streets are a part of the subdivision plans submitted for
"We don't have any hard and fast formula," said Druied Roberson,
Ocean Isle building inspector. "Whatever the planning board says is
what you have to do."
However, Roberson said it's usually difficult for any project an acre
or larger to meet state sedimentation and erosion control requirements if
streets are not paved.
All roads and streets inside Hoklcn Beach's town limits must meet
current DOT standards for secondary roads, which means streets there
do not have to be paved, said Building Inspector Dwight Carroll.
"All of ours recently have been paved," said Carroll, "and it's to the
developer's advantage. Who wants to buy a vacant lot or a house on a
Sunset Beach Town Administrator Linda Flucgcl says all subdivi
sion streets there must be built and paved to IX )T standards. However,
the required width may vary, depending on whether the street is a thor
oughfare, she said.