Southern Shores has never been thought of as a center for hard fought political stance but a February vote by the town council came at the end of a contentious council meeting.
Although the town has no plans to undertake beach nourishment at this time, town council was concerned that if, in the future, it becomes necessary, the legal steps to gain access to the beach are in place. To do so they passed a resolution asking the state legislature to grant them âåÛåÏquick takeâåÛå rights of eminent domain.
As a simple explanation, if it is determined that a row of 200 beach front properties need beach nourishment and three properties deny access to the beach all 200 properties may suffer. Under any circumstances the town has the right to gain access through eminent domain, but typically that is a fairly time consuming process. The quick take provision allows immediate condemnation of the property–for access only–and legal proceedings would follow after the condemnation.
Citing concerns about the loss of property rights and government overreach, citizen after citizen rose to speak passionately against the resolution.
In the end though, town commissioners, voicing concerns for the longterm economic health of the community voted unanimously to pass the measure.
The resolution has no legal standing but is a request for the state legislature to grant the quick take rights to the town.