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Archive for December, 2013

Officers investigating armed breaking and entering

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013

Deputies with the New Hanover County Sheriff's Office are on the scene of an armed breaking and entering scene.

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Attempt to move grounded ferry fails, injured passengers out of hospital

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — A day after a Bald Head Island ferry ran aground hurting more than a dozen people, the boat is still stranded on a sandbar. Meanwhile we are no closer to finding out who the captain was or what caused the grounding.

“We’re on the Bald Head Island ferry,” a 911 caller told a dispatcher after the accident Tuesday morning. “It has come to an abrupt stop in the channel, and we have injured people thrown to the deck. We’ve got a broken nose. Passengers were thrown to the floor.”

Lt. Lane Munroe says Coast Guard investigators are looking into what may have caused the crash.

“We’re going to look into any causative factors, whether they be environmental, mechanical, or personnel driven,” he said. “And we’re going to base that for future actions for the coast guard to look at all ferry traffic within the state.”

Bald Head Island Transportation attempted to move the ferry Wednesday morning, but were unsuccessful. Lt. Monroe says the Coast Guard is working closely with the owners to develop a new plan to salvage the boat.

Meanwhile Bald Head Island Limited spokeswoman Joyce Fulton says the company will not release the captain’s name until the Coast Guard investigation is complete. She says sharing the captain’s name is inappropriate at this time.

The Coast Guard also will not release the captain’s name. Monroe says they would not want anyone speculating on what happened and why before the investigation is complete, but he says there is no way to tell how long the investigation will take.

Fulton says all 13 victims were treated and released from the hospital by late Tuesday afternoon. She says Bald Head Island Limited hopes to try again to move the ferry tomorrow morning.

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Convention Center hotel land valued much higher than proposed sale price

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Is the land deal for the site of a convention center hotel a better deal for Wilmington or the hotel developer?

A recent appraisal commissioned by the city shows the land is worth much more than what the city is offering to sell it for.

“If you use the $1.32 million evaluation, it means that at $579,000 the city would only be capturing 45 percent of the lands value,” said Matthew Davis, an attorney for Sotherly Hotels, the parent company of the Hilton Wilmington Riverside.

Sotherly Hotels has spent the past several months challenging the city’s sale of the land for the proposed convention center hotel.

“We feel like our concerns have been validated based on the city’s own new appraisal, which values the property at $1.32 million,” Davis said.

The city picked Virginia-based Harmony Hospitality to develop the hotel back in 2011.

In a statement a city spokeswoman said, “At this point, there has been no finalized agreement or negotiated price for the land the city owns adjacent to the convention center. As a matter of course, appraisals are provided as professional opinion, but the final value of properties are generally determined by what buyers and sellers both agree upon.”

Davis says such a deal would cost taxpayers more than $800,000 in lost revenue.

“Such a steep discount really creates two problems,” Davis said. “The first is it means the city would be leaving about 800,000 in lost profits on the table.”

We tried to get comments from several city council members including Earl Sheridan, Kevin O’Grady and Charlie Rivenbark, but our calls for comment have not been returned.

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Lake Waccamaw Fire Dept. closes, insurance rates could go up

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013

Insurance rates could soon go up for homeowners in Lake Waccamaw, since inspectors with the State Fire Marshal's Office closed the fire department in the area Tuesday.

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Coastal Cupcakes to close retail shops

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013

Beckmeyer recently launched Topsee Tulip Frosting, a four-ingredient, all-natural cake topping

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