Local News

  • Sheriff addresses pros, cons of drone use

     Sheriff John Ingram knows the use of drones, if regulated properly, could be an effective tool for local law enforcement.

    But he also sees the drawbacks, and recognizes it will be a long time before drone use is a reality.

    “There are a number of legitimate uses for a drone,” Ingram said. “But there are also several concerns.”

    Ingram was asked by the North Carolina Sheriff’s Association to write a letter to the state’s legislative research committee outlining the pros and cons of drone use.

  • District hosts crisis management sessions, seeks ways to make schools safer

     SUPPLY — Brunswick County Schools is on its way to becoming an example for others to follow in crisis management.

    The district hosted a pair of training sessions led by Rick Kaufman, a nationally recognized veteran of crisis management, Thursday, Feb. 20.

    Kaufman is the executive director of community relations and emergency management for Bloomington (Minn.) Public Schools. He formerly served in this role for Colorado’s largest public school system, where he led the Crisis Response Team to the Columbine High School tragedy in April 1999.

  • Hearing set for proposed homeowners insurance rate hike

     The insurance industry hasn’t withdrawn its latest request for homeowner rate increases. As a result, North Carolina’s insurance commissioner has scheduled a public hearing on the matter, refusing to entertain any settlement negotiations.

    Commissioner Wayne Goodwin had criticized the North Carolina Rate Bureau’s request the day it was filed, Jan. 3, pointing out that the last round of approved homeowner insurance rate increases went into effect just six months earlier.

  • OIB woman wins $25,000 in N.C. Education Lottery

    An Ocean Isle Beach woman is among people who have won money in the North Carolina Education Lottery this month.

    Reba Lea was the winner of $25,000 in the Feb. 18 Mega Millions drawing. She purchased her ticket at Minuteman Food Mart No. 33 on Naber Drive in Shallotte.

    Since Feb. 13, players in N.C. Education Lottery games have won more than $21 million, with more than $17 million being paid to players of instant scratch-off games, said Van Denton, spokesman for the N.C. Education Lottery.Players of draw games won more than $4 million in total prizes.

  • Special county meeting Monday to consider referendum on one-quarter cent sales and use tax

    The Brunswick County Board of Commissioners will hold a special called meeting at 4 p.m. Monday, Feb. 24 in the Commissioners’ Chambers, David R. Sandifer Administration Building, Brunswick County Government Complex, Bolivia.

    Commissioners will consider a resolution asking the Brunswick County Board of Elections to schedule an advisory referendum May 6 regarding a possible quarter-cent county sales and use tax.

    The public is invited to attend.

  • Spouses could be cut from county employee health insurance

    County commissioners heard a number of difficult options to deal with rising health insurance costs at a special workshop Monday, Feb. 17.

    The insurance plan for 2013-14 costs a little more than $10 million.

    If the county wants to maintain the insurance plan at the same levels provided in 2013-14, the cost to the county is expected to increase by almost $2.5 million.

    At the workshop, County Manager Ann Hardy offered leaving the policy the same and taking the financial hit as one option.

  • More candidates, incumbents file for elections

    Brunswick County’s election filing period opened Feb. 10, but last week’s ice storm caused county offices to close for a third day in two weeks.

    Board of Elections staff said the days the office was closed will not affect the filing period, which is open until noon Friday, Feb. 28.

    District attorney

    The District Attorney race could be decided in the primary election as the incumbent, Jon David and his opponent, Ryan Smithwick are both Republican candidates.

    But first, David will have to file to run for re-election.

  • July 4th fireworks planned on OIB pier

    OCEAN ISLE BEACH — Town commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday, Feb. 11, to approve a contract for a fireworks display on Independence Day at the Ocean Isle Beach pier.

    The event is a joint venture between the Ocean Isle Property Owners Association and the town.

    The OIPOA agreed to fund the event if the town could get permission to use the pier and come to terms with Zambelli Fireworks. The fireworks display will cost $17,500.

    Mark Robertson, OIPOA president, said the group has discussed a fireworks display for a few years.

  • OIB begins eminent domain action for Causeway Drive property

    OCEAN ISLE BEACH — The Ocean Isle Beach town board voted to take a property by eminent domain to be used for a park.

    Mayor Debbie Smith said during the Feb. 11 town board meeting the town has pursued two parcels between Causeway Drive and the Museum of Coastal Carolina for open space and park property.

    Smith said the property at Causeway Drive and East Second Street is owned by Bank of America and town officials have been negotiating with the bank to purchase the land.

    “We thought we had a purchase agreement,” Smith said.

  • Plans under way for veterans memorial in Sunset Beach

    SUNSET BEACH — Plans are under way for a new veterans memorial in Sunset Beach.

    The Committee to Honor America’s Veterans consists of Brunswick County residents tasked with locating a veterans memorial somewhere in the region.

    Plans now call for the memorial to be located in the new Sunset Beach Town Park “one brick at a time,” according to members.