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Offer made on county-owned Buxton Harbor property; Avon Harbor has commission attention

A purchase offer has been received for the remaining Dare County-owned property at Buxton Harbor.

On Nov. 16, county manager Robert L. Outten reported to the commissioners that Calvin Burrus, an adjoining land owner, had made a $15,000 offer for the parcel, which includes land that connects to NC 12 and the bottom of the harbor according to the GIS system on Dare County’s website. Burrus has already purchased from Dare County a sliver of land at the mouth of the harbor. Outten reported that county assessor Hosea Wilson said the parcel was worth more.

By consensus, the commissioners agreed to pursue the matter.

While Buxton Harbor is not on the Dare County Waterways Commission agenda, Avon Harbor is.

Sand is eroding into the north side of the harbor and clogging the waterway. The Waterways Commission and staffer Brent Johnson have been working with local property owners to figure out dredging. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has conducted a topographical survey of the harbor.

Another possibility for dredging the harbor is for property owners to submit an application for a Coastal Area Management Act permit. Once the permit is in hand, the group and the Waterways Commission could look for grant money to dredge the harbor with a local contractor.

Putting in two additional channel markers inside the bar is a request from the Waterways Commission to the U.S. Coast Guard. No buoys mark the distance from inside the bar to the South Ferry Channel.

At the November Waterways Commission meeting, Ryan Agre with the U.S. Coast Guard said a tender could not get to the locations to place the markers. Additionally, the USCGC Smilax, used as a buoy tender, was down because a generator has to be rebuilt. The Coast Guard is working on a plan,

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reported the dredge Merritt was due at Big Foot Slough Nov. 12, intending to work for over a week at that location.

John Able with the North Carolina Ferry Division reported about Sloop Channel, indicating that the State Historic Preservation Office asked for an underwater archaeology survey before signing off on the dredging project. He said the state does not have funding in place. Sloop Channel is part of the ferry route from Hatteras village to Ocracoke.

Commission member Michael Flynn said the North Carolina Coastal Federation will soon publish a request for qualifications to remove abandoned vessels from waterways. About 20 vessels are on the federation’s list. The request should be on the federation’s website, nccoast.org, around the first week in December.

The next virtual meeting of the Dare County Waterways Commission is Dec. 14, 2020. The meetings for 2021 will be virtual unless changed. Go to darenc.com and look at the meeting announcements on the right hand side of the opening page to find the connection to the meetings.

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