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CAROLINA SHORES — Town commissioners are debating who’s responsible for what when it comes to drainage easements and landscape maintenance.
During discussion at the town board’s monthly workshop July 7, town administrator Jon Mendenhall said a Northwest Drive resident has asked the town to consider taking over maintenance of a drainage easement between Courts 6 and 7.
But town commissioners were in agreement the town cannot be responsible for easements it doesn’t own.
Town commissioner Greg Davis said if the town takes over swales between homes, “we’re going to have that problem in six developments,” citing the number of communities composing Carolina Shores.
Fellow commissioner Joseph Przywara said the town should only be concerned with easements it owns “and we’re legally responsible for,” Davis added.
During public comment, resident Kathleen Edwards said, “All we’re looking for is someone to weed-whack and clean” the site.
Carolina Shores POA president Al Franklin also sought clarification.
“I was under the opinion, and so were lawyers, when Calabash deeded everything to Carolina Shores, it included all drainage ditches and swales,” Franklin said, adding the sites should be taken over by the town after all the correspondence with lawyers two years ago.
Golf course discrepancy
Regarding a discrepancy at another site that has come into question, “Tract K,” Mendenhall said documents the town has do not indicate there is a deed for the site. Town commissioner John Manning said the bank has said Mike Matheny, previously of the adjacent golf course, is still the holder of the tract.
Carolina Shores Mayor Walter Goodenough said the Carolina Shores Property Owners Association has been complaining it wants the town to take over maintenance of that strip after shrubbery was removed.
“We didn’t take the shrubs out — the golf course did after (paving work),” Goodenough said. “My issue is if the golf course destroyed it, then the golf course can take the rest of the stumps out and fix it the way it was. We’re not going to spend money on something that isn’t ours again.”
Goodenough added he would have no problem sending golf course director Philippe Bureau an “$18,000 bill for roadwork.”
Commissioners also questioned the involvement of Lune de La Maison, which took over management of day-to-day operations at the Carolina Shores Golf & Country Club last year.
Town commissioner Bill Brennan said there are things missing in a proposed document conveying interest of the tract to the town.
“There’s no legal tie in this document,” Brennan said. “As a contract, this is totally useless.”
Manning said they will have to consult with the town attorney.
Committees, public comment
Goodenough also suggested suggested reducing the number of meetings of the town HOA/POA advisory committee because every month, members “keep bringing up and rehashing the same thing. If we don’t abolish (the committee), then I propose we move to quarterly (meetings).”
Brennan said he finds it difficult to believe Goodenough wants to abolish the committee because it keeps the town informed about what members’ thoughts are.
“It’s good to have input from the residents,” he said. “It’s a concerted thing. It’s a gathered consensus of individual communities.”
Goodenough said the committee also isn’t carrying back information to residents.
Davis said he agreed with Brennan and that the committee gives the town’s six communities a chance to talk among themselves.
“There may be redundancy, but they address a lot of problems not brought to us,” he said.
He added they could revert to quarterly meetings.
Przywra said, “I believe we can still use (the committee).”
Committee member Betty Towell said bi-monthly meetings would be OK with her.
Mendenhall said he will continue to attend meetings as town liaison.
Goodenough said he also favors appointing one person to answer emails and serve as spokesman for the town.
He also favored limiting public comment at workshops and meetings, but board members indicated it’s important to get input at both sessions.
Laura Lewis is a staff writer for the Beacon. Reach her at 754-6890 or email@example.com.