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Archive for February, 2013

NCDOT to hold public hearings on proposed ferry toll rates

Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

RALEIGH, NC (NEWS RELEASE) — The NC Department of Transportation will hold two public meetings about proposed toll changes on its ferry routes. These changes include rate increases on the Southport/Fort Fisher, Swan Quarter/Ocracoke and Cedar Island/Ocracoke routes and the addition of tolls on the Bayview/Aurora and Cherry Branch/Minnesott Beach routes, by July 1 of this year.

The public hearings are scheduled for:

Monday, March 11, 7 p.m.
Wake Commons – Room 100B
4011 Carya Drive, Raleigh

Monday, March 18, 7 p.m.
Pamlico Community College
Ned Everett Delamar Center Auditorium
5049 Highway 306 S., Grantsboro

At each meeting, a formal presentation will begin at 7 p.m. Following the presentation, the meeting will be open for statements, questions and comments. Anyone wishing to speak should register to do so at the sign-in table prior to the presentation. Please arrive about 30 minutes early to allow time to sign-in. The proposed rates as well as a link to submit a comment are posted to NCDOT’s webpage.

In 2011, the North Carolina General Assembly mandated that NCDOT increase annual ferry revenue to $5 million. To accomplish this, the ferry division was asked to increase toll rates on the three routes that currently have tolls, and begin tolling two additional routes by April 1. 2012. Such changes require amending the NC Administrative Code. In the early months of 2012, five public hearings were held to accept public comment about the request to amend the Administrative Code. The input received was reviewed and submitted to the Rules Review Commission with the Office of Administrative Hearings.

On Feb. 29, 2012, former Gov. Bev Perdue issued an executive order placing a one-year moratorium on the collection of the tolls. Session Law 2012-142 House Bill 950 directed DOT to disregard the executive order and clarified ferry tolling in Section 24.18(a) G.S. 136-82, directing DOT to collect tolls, as established by the Board of Transportation on the ferry routes.

During its January 2013 meeting, the BOT adopted a resolution authorizing the Secretary of Transportation to adopt rules establishing ferry tolls. The upcoming public hearings are the next step in the process to change the administrative code and implement the changes required to ferry tolls.

For more information about the upcoming meetings, contact Jamille Robbins, NCDOT- Human Environment Unit at 1598 Mail Service Center, Raleigh 27699-1598, (919) 707-6085 or jarobbins@ncdot.gov.

NCDOT will provide auxiliary aids and services under the Americans with Disabilities Act for disabled persons who want to participate in this hearing. Anyone requiring special services should contact Robbins as soon as possible so that arrangements can be made.

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Judge hands prison sentence to alligator killer

Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

A Leland man will spend 120 days in prison for killing an American alligator, the second time he was convicted of such a charge.

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Coast Guard searches for missing man off NC coast

Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

The Coast Guard is currently searching for a man who reportedly fell overboard Wednesday just off the coast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, according to officials.

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Wrightsville Beach receives grant from Reeve Foundation

Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC (NEWS RELEASE) — The Town of Wrightsville is pleased to announce that it has received a $6,000 Quality of Life grant from the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation. The award was one of 76 grants totaling almost $427,000 awarded by the Reeve Foundation to nonprofit organizations nationwide that provide more opportunities, access, and daily quality of life for individuals living with paralysis, their families, and caregivers. Created by the late Dana Reeve, the program has awarded 2,131 grants totaling over $16 million since 1999.

The Town of Wrightsville Beach Parks & Recreation Department will use the grant to purchase sand wheelchairs for use on the beach. The sand wheelchairs are provided free of charge to any individual in need of the service. The ability to enhance the quality of life for those with physical challenges by facilitating access to our beautiful beaches is truly a gift made greater by this grant.

The Town of Wrightsville Beach is honored to be one of the 76 grant recipients in the United States. Thanks to the Reeve Foundation, the Town of Wrightsville Beach will be able to expand availability and opportunity to enhance the quality of life for those living with disabilities.

“The Reeve Foundation’s Quality of Life Grants Program has always been a cornerstone of one of our core beliefs, the power of we. By supporting these organizations that align with the same beliefs as ours, we are better able to help our community members live more independently,” said Peter T. Wilderotter, president and CEO of the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation. “We are pleased to reward a number of tremendous organizations for their efforts.”

The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation Quality of Life grants program was conceived by the late Dana Reeve to address the myriad needs of children and adults with paralysis and other mobility impairments and their families. Grants support critical life-enhancing and life-changing initiatives that improve physical and emotional health and increase independence. Funded projects offer a diversity of services and approaches: improving access; providing education and job training; sponsoring organized sporting activities; and much more. Quality of Life grants are funded through a cooperative agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Award #1U59DD000838).

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Goolsby files bill that aims to reduce sex trafficking in N.C.

Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

A bill filed in the state Senate Wednesday by a local senator would require those convicted of human trafficking, or pimps, to register as sex offenders

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