New boat slips are on their way to Belhaven

Published 9:50 am Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Staff Writer

BELHAVEN — This town should see its boat-slips project under way soon.
During the Town Council’s meeting Monday, Hood Richardson, an engineer and surveyor, made a presentation concerning options for proceeding with the Wynne’s Gut dock project, including its pavilion and docking facilities at the Cooperage property.
Town Manager Guinn Leverett presented landscape footage of where he and Richardson decided to place the docking facilities at Wynne’s Gut.
“The only problem was we could not fit enough (boat) slips in Wynne’s Gut comfortably,” he said. “And alternatives weren’t very good. And then the Cooperage property came along. So, now we have an improved approach for the slips, as we can have eight slips in Wynne’s Gut, but could not get 13 slips in there.”
Leverett said the town is looking at adding more boat slips — at separate sites — and at the same time keep the number of boat slips at less than 13. Doing so would keep the project from needing the issuance of a major permit.
Richardson said anything over nine boat slips would turn the project into one needing a marina permit, which falls into the major-permit category.
“Ten boat slips is a major permit,” he said.
Leverett said the project’s total budget is $310,000.
“Are we going to have any money to build them after we’ve paid for all these studies and plans?” McKee “Mac” Pigott Jr., mayor pro tempore, said.
“Oh, yes,” Leverett said. “And we can start construction on Wynne’s Gut right now.”
“Before we go any further in this, we have the money to build the eight slips,” Councilman Steve Carawan said. “I’m for building the eight slips if we acquire that property and if we get the permits.”
Carawan said he did not see the purpose of spending money on the property if the town does not obtain the permits because the town may need that money for something else down the road.
“We’ve been talking about this for maybe three years,” he said. “And I’ve heard that we need another approval and spend more money, and that’s not what I’m wanting to do.”
Richardson said if the town does not get permits to build at the Cooperage property, it is still budgeted to build the boat slips at Wynne’s Gut.
“I think the folks who gave us the grant will be satisfied if we put in the eight slips at Wynne’s Gut,” Pigott said.
Carawan made the motion to proceed with that option. Councilman Robert Stanley seconded the motion, which was approved unanimously.
In other business, the council approved a resolution to proceed with the sewer force-main bypass and historic waterfront sewer rehabilitation projects. Carawan made the motion to adopt the resolution, which was seconded by Stanley. The motion carried unanimously.
Gary Hartong, an engineer with the Wooten Co., sent resolution to the council for its consideration.
Leverett said approval of the resolution was necessary so the town could submit a grant/loan application for funding for the project to the N.C. Division of Water Quality. The application is due Sept. 1.
The resolution states that the town will arrange financing for the remaining cost of the project, if its application is approved.