Town manager Cliff Ogburn addresses the town council. Southern Shores meeting screenshot

NC - Southern Shores moves closer to adopting municipal service districts to fund beach nourishment

The Southern Shores Town Council continued the discussion Tuesday evening, February 2 for funding the beach nourishment project through establishing municipal service districts (MSDs). The council also approved a motion to receive bids for Sea Oats Trail road improvement.

Town manager Cliff Ogburn recommended boundaries for the proposed MSDs, a critical part of the funding for the 2022 beach nourishment project. The project would address erosion issues from storms and wind by pumping in sand to widen existing beaches, thereby stabilizing homes, income and infrastructure.

Because properties closer to the beach (those included in the proposed MSDs) would receive the greatest direct benefit from the nourishment project, the council is proposing that they be taxed differently.

The council has approved the motion to file the report, which will result in mailers being sent to property owners in proposed MSDs with a notification of a public hearing to discuss the project and tax effect. The hearing is scheduled for March 16 at 5:30 p.m.

Neighboring beach towns have implemented MSDs as a way to pay for beach nourishment, which is estimated at $16 million. The council is requesting the majority of funds to come from the county, though the county has not confirmed commitment to the project, with the remaining $6 million provided by taxpayers.

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