By IRENE NOLAN
The Dare County Board of Commissioners will meet twice this week — both times to consider issues related to budgeting.
On Thursday, March 26, at 5 p.m., the commissioners will meet in a workshop to continue planning for the budget for the next fiscal year, which begins on July 1. The meeting is in Room 238 on the second floor of the county Administration Building in Manteo.
On Friday, March 27, the board has scheduled a special meeting at 9 a.m. in the Commissioners’ Meeting Room.
At that meeting, the board members will consider and perhaps approve a resolution to the North Carolina General Assembly requesting a local bill to authorize the implementation of a half-cent sales tax dedicated to inlet dredging and maintenance in Dare County.
At their March 2 board meeting, the commissioners voted unanimously to support dredging of Hatteras and Oregon inlets with funds equivalent to Dare County’s share of three percent of the occupancy tax. The county’s share is 32 percent or about $3.8 million.
At the budget workshop, the commissioners will discuss where they will find the money for dredging in next year’s budget. Also at the March 2 meeting, the commissioners talked about the need to find a recurring source of funding for dredging of the county’s inlets.
Dare County already has approval from the General Assembly to levy an addition one-quarter cent sales tax, but that approval requires a referendum.
The board has not said whether the request for the power to levy an additional half-cent would be with or without a referendum.
Dare County manager Bobby Outten said that a half-cent increase in the sales tax would bring in approximately an additional $6.6 million.
Also at the March 27 special meeting, the board will discuss and take action in support of North Carolinians for Fair Property Insurance (NDFAIR), a grassroots group that has formed to advocate for passage of Senate Bill 208 and the companion House Bill 152, both aimed at a more fair and transparent rate-making process.
A live audio feed of the March 27 meeting will be available online on the county’s website, www.darenc.com. On the left hand side of the page, scroll down to “Listen to Live Meetings.” A video of the meeting will also be available about a day or so later.