Nags Head “blindsided” by proposed Jennette’s Pier sale

Posted at 3:39 PM, Jun 12, 2014
and last updated 2014-06-12 17:28:01-04

Nags Head, N.C. (WTKR) - The Mayor of Nags Head says he feels "blindsided" by a state proposal that could put Jenette's Pier up for sale.

The provision is part of the proposed budget for July 1 and would allow North Carolina to use money from any sale to be put into the Clean Water Management Trust Fund.

After Hurricane Isabel badly damaged Jennette's in 2003, it reopened in 2011 as a fishing pier and educational facility through the North Carolina Aquarium Society.

"Yes we do feel blindsided because we have a memorandum of understanding with the Aquarium Society that this facility was to be built and used as a facility for education," Mayor Edwards told NewsChannel 3's Todd Corillo.

Beyond that, he says local money also went into acquiring the site in Nags Head.

"Dare County put up $700,000 in matching funds and the town put up $300,000 in matching funds, so yes we feel very much blindsided," Edwards stated.

One major concern in Nags Head is what private ownership of the pier would mean for storm water control measures currently in place.

"One of the intended purposes was storm water control and this is storm water control over a 30-plus acres site. A private entrepreneur is not going to be interested in maintaining storm water control," Edwards said.

The North Carolina House of Representatives was expected to take up the Jennette's Pier proposal Thursday and Friday.