Permit debate moves on to county commissioners - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Permit debate moves on to county commissioners

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©  After two hours of discussion and debate, the New Hanover County Planning Board approved text edits for it's Special Use Permit (SUP) legislation. © After two hours of discussion and debate, the New Hanover County Planning Board approved text edits for it's Special Use Permit (SUP) legislation.

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WECT) - After two hours of discussion and debate, the New Hanover County Planning Board approved text edits for its Special Use Permit (SUP) legislation.

The debate has been going for months. The topic was tabled at a public hearing in January and then postponed a second time due to inclement weather.

The planning board modified the permit, before approving it and passing it on to the New Hanover County Board of Commissioners for approval. 

Many feel the permit will be a big factor in determining whether or not businesses decide to make their home in the Cape Fear region.

The new and improved text states that the following can be done when a business applies for a SUP

  • local government can request applicant info
  • local, state, and federal agencies can be requested to provide further info on applicants
  • the applicant must include a list of permits that will be needed
  • a public meeting will be held on the industry's application

Local business leaders fear that placing too many restrictions in the SUP legislation will burden existing businesses and scare off industries.

"We thought the changes they passed tonight were good changes," said Hal Kitchin, former Chairman for the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce. "We were in favor of the January version.  This version tonight was sort of a compromise."

Many concerned taxpayers and environmentalists still hold issue with the revised SUP text.

"We think the narrative should be more detailed," explained Mike Giles, President of the NC Coastal Federation.

Giles explained that he thinks the company applying for a permit should be providing more info.

"The applicant still can refuse to provide requested information that staff or county planning board asked for and it can still move forward to the county commission. That's still an issue," Giles concluded.

The NHC Board of County Commissioners will see the topic on their April 7 agenda.

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