- Published on Friday, 29 June 2012 10:16
- Written by Super User
By WILLARD KILLOUGH III
The North Carolina General Assembly has eliminated $1.2 million in state funding for beach nourhishment in Kure Beach.
This came as a surprise to Town officials who thought since they were part of the federal Army Corp of Engineers project titled, "Carolina Beach and Vicinity" the requested $2.14 million in state funding would be covered by the legislature.
In fact, it was cut by $1.2 million. Leaving Kure Beach sitting on the sidelines scratching their heads and scrambling to make phone calls to legislators hoping to get that funding restored.
Unfortunately, it wasn't restored. It lost out to other political agendas such as education reform and raises for state employees just to name a few.
Now Kure Beach is faced with the possibility of no nourishment project later this year, or, having to borrow that money from the County paying it back with interest.
Since that money is collected through a room occupancy tax on hotels, motels and vacation rentals, why charge Kure Beach any interest at all?
Perhaps to continue to grow the $37.5 million dollar Room Occupancy Tax fund. Surely it's earning interest sitting in the bank.
Kure Beach, like all county municipalities, is a vital part of our local economy.
While a long-term solution is being pursued to resolve federal and state funding issues for nourishment projects, this is a unique situation and the County should fund Kure Beach without charging interest.
If our local leaders are willing to ask for federal and state funding interest free, so to should they be willing to come to the aid of Kure Beach interest free.
But not without a caveat. Kure Beach, like Carolina Beach, should begin considering alternate revenue sources. That's certainly an issue already on their radar. Especially due to this current scenario. After all, they've been paying into the county beach nourishment fund for many, many years.