Wednesday, October 12, 2016

McCrory administration issues emergency permit for hurricane recovery

Oct 12, 2016

RALEIGH – Coastal property owners who need to replace docks, piers, bulkheads or similar structures damaged by Hurricane Matthew along sounds, rivers and creeks may be able to do so quickly by using an emergency general permit offered by the state’s coastal management agency.

“Our goal is to help people who live on the coast quickly rebuild after Hurricane Matthew devastated parts of our coastline,” said Donald R. van der Vaart, secretary of the state environmental department. “The emergency permit allows us to protect the environment while helping residents recover from the storm.”

The permit regulations speed up the authorization process for rebuilding structures that meet state standards. The rules also waive permit fees for those projects, as well as for dune reconstruction and maintenance dredging of existing channels related to hurricane recovery.

Van der Vaart activated the emergency permit on Monday. It can be used in all 20 coastal counties: Beaufort, Bertie, Brunswick, Camden, Carteret, Chowan, Craven, Currituck, Dare, Gates, Hertford, Hyde, New Hanover, Onslow, Pamlico, Pasquotank, Pender, Perquimans, Tyrell, and Washington. The permit does not eliminate the need to obtain any other required state, local or federal authorization. To see Van der Vaart’s signed statement, go to:

Permits must be received and all work must be completed by Oct. 10, 2017.

The general permit cannot be used for rebuilding houses and does not apply to the replacement of oceanfront structures. Non-oceanfront property owners who lost their home may need either a CAMA minor permit or a permit exemption to replace it, depending on where the house was located.

If you want to apply for the emergency general permit, here’s how you can help staff with the state Division of Coastal Management review your request as quickly as possible:

  1. Please make your request in person at the N.C. Division of Coastal Management office that covers your county: 1367 U.S. 17 South, Elizabeth City (Camden, Chowan, Currituck, Dare, Gates, Pasquotank and Perquimans counties); 400 Commerce Ave., Morehead City (Carteret, Craven and Pamlico counties, and the White Oak River bank in Onslow County); 943 Washington Square Mall, Washington (Beaufort, Bertie, Hertford, Hyde, Tyrrell and Washington counties); 127 Cardinal Drive Ext., Wilmington (Brunswick, New Hanover and Pender counties, Onslow County south of the New River, and Topsail Island).
  1. Bring with you a description of the extent of the repair, replacement, dune reconstruction or maintenance dredging you need to do, including dimensions and shoreline length. Pre- and post-storm pictures of the project are helpful.
  1. Give your name, address, phone number and the project location. Include any detailed information that will be helpful, such as the state road number, the name of the water body and the name of the development.
  1. For projects involving the dredging or filling of estuarine waters, please provide confirmation that the adjacent riparian property owners have been notified by certified mail of the proposed work. The notice should instruct neighbors to provide any comments about the proposed work to the Division of Coastal Management within 10 days of receiving the notice, and that a lack of response by them will be interpreted as no objection.
  1. If you have had any other CAMA permit on your property, please tell the division. Those permits may contain information that will help staff with the N.C. Division of Coastal Management review your repair or replacement request.

Property owners with questions should call their local N.C. Division of Coastal Management office – Elizabeth City: (252) 264-3901; Morehead City: (252) 808-2808 or 1-888-4RCOAST (1-888-472-6278); Washington: (252) 946-6481; Wilmington: (910) 796-7215.