CHAPTER 10:  PARKS AND RECREATION
Section
Article I.  In General
   10-1   Regulation of surfers
   10-2   Purpose
   10-3   Regulation of parks and recreation facilities
   10-4   Additional provisions
   10-5   Declaration of closed park or recreation facility
   10-6   Rules and regulations set by the town
   10-7   Violation
   10-8 – 10-19   Reserved
Article II.  Beaches
Division 1.  Generally
   10-20   Certain activities on beaches prohibited
   10-21   Regulating activities near sandbag revetments and geotextiles tubes
   10-22   Authority of police officers as to swimmers
   10-23   Digging of holes on beach strand
   10-24   Unattended beach equipment prohibitied
   10-25   Placing obstructions on beach
   10-26   Penalties
   10-27 – 10-29   Reserved
Division 2.  Motor-Driven Vehicles and Horses on Dunes and Beaches
   10-30   Purpose
   10-31   Definitions
   10-32   Beach access driving regulations
   10-33   Commercial fishermen
   10-34   Permit requirements
   10-35   Closing the beach strand
   10-36   Vehicles for disabled persons
   10-37   Sport fishermen
   10-38   Fee schedule
   10-39   Penalty
Article III.  Boat and Water Safety
   10-40   Operation of boats in manner endangering bathers
   10-41   Operation of motorboats and the like in reckless manner
   10-42   Operation of motorboats and the like while intoxicated
   10-43   Operation of jet skis
Article IV.  Sand Dune Protection
   10-44   Findings of fact and purpose
   10-45   Conflicts with state rules
   10-46   Territorial applicability
   10-47   Exemptions
   10-48   Enforcement
   10-49   Damaging sand dunes
   10-50   Repairing damage caused by violations
   10-51   Criminal penalty
   10-52   Civil penalty
   10-53   Severability
Cross-reference:
   Beach vendors, see § 4-35
   Posting signs prohibiting carrying concealed weapons in parks, see § 6.5-1
   Vehicles and boats, see Chapter 12
Statutory reference:
   Boating safety, see G.S. §§ 75A-1 et seq.
ARTICLE I.  IN GENERAL
§ 10-1  REGULATION OF SURFERS.
   (a)   Surfing shall be permitted within the town limits except in those areas located 300 feet on either side of any pier located within the town.
   (b)   All surfers, while engaged in the act of surfing, shall have their surfboards attached to them by a surfer’s leash.
   (c)   Unless otherwise authorized by the County Park and Recreation Director, surfing is prohibited in front of regional access areas maintained by the county.
   (d)   Violation of this section shall be subject to a fine up to $500 or up to six months in jail or both in the discretion of the court.
(Ord. passed 9-4-1991; Ord. passed 8-6-1992)
Statutory reference:
   Surfboards generally, see G.S. §§ 75A-10, 75A-13
§ 10-2  PURPOSE.
   The purpose of this chapter is to establish regulations for the public health, safety and welfare in respect to the recreational activities, programs and facilities of the town. This chapter is designed to maximize the enjoyment of recreation in the town’s recreation facilities and programs and offer protection from conditions which could harm, injure or offend any group or individual.
(Ord. passed 11-7-2002)
§ 10-3  REGULATION OF PARKS AND RECREATION FACILITIES.
   (a)   It shall be unlawful for any person in any park, recreation area, playground, ball field, picnic shelter or any other recreation facility and the parking facilities thereof, owned or controlled by the town to:
      (1)   Willfully mark, deface, disfigure, injure, tamper with, display or remove any structure, equipment, facilities or other property, either real or personal;
      (2)   Damage, cut, carve, transplant or remove any tree or plant, injure the bark, pick the flowers or seeds of any tree or plant, to dig or otherwise disturb grass areas in any other way or injure or impair the natural beauty or usefulness of any area;
      (3)   Dump, deposit or leave any bottles, broken glass, ashes, charcoal, gas, paper, boxes, cans, dirt, rubbish, wastes, garbage or refuse or other trash;
      (4)   Fail to obey all police officers and recreational personnel or volunteers, as appointed by the Town Manager or his or her designee;
      (5)   Park any motor vehicle in areas other than established or designated parking areas;
      (6)   Drive any motor vehicle on any area except the parking areas or such other areas as may be specifically designated by the Town Manager, or his or her designee. No motorcycles, minibikes, trail bikes, dirt bikes, go-carts, all-terrain vehicles or like motorized vehicles are allowed on park property except for parking in designated parking areas only;
      (7)   Allow or permit any dogs or other animals to run at large or to leave any excrement from such animal on any area of the park or recreational facility;
      (8)   Violate the regulation that use of the individual gazebo or picnic shelter, together with tables and benches, follows generally the rule of “first come, first served,” unless a reservation has been issued according to regulations as adopted by the Board of Aldermen;
      (9)   Leave a picnic area or shelter before the grill is completely extinguished and before all trash in the nature of boxes, papers, cans, bottles, garbage and other refuse is placed in receptacles provided. If no such receptacles are available, then refuse and trash shall be carried away from the park area by the user to be properly disposed of elsewhere;
      (10)   No adults shall use the gazebo as a fishing pier. Children 12 and under (accompanied by an adult) will be permitted to fish. Due to sanitary and safety concerns, there will be no cleaning of fish on the gazebo or walkway to the gazebo;
      (11)   No person shall set up tents, shacks or any other temporary shelter for the purpose of overnight camping, nor shall any person leave in any park after closing hours any movable structure or special vehicle to be used or that could be used for such purpose, such as a camper/trailer, house trailer or the like;
      (12)   Bring, have in his or her possession, set off or otherwise cause to explode, discharge or burn any firecrackers, other fireworks, explosives or nonexplosives, such as sparklers, or discharge them or throw them into any such area from land or highway adjacent thereto;
      (13)   Build or attempt to build a fire except when using the grill to cook. No person shall drop, throw or otherwise scatter lighted matches, burning cigarettes or cigars or other flammable material within any park area or on any highway, road or street abutting or contiguous thereto;
      (14)   Sleep or protractedly lounge on the seats, benches, floors or other area, or engage in loud, boisterous, threatening, abusive, insulting or indecent language or engage in any disorderly conduct or behavior tending to be a breach of the public peace;
      (15)   Disturb or interfere unreasonably with any other person or party occupying any area, or participating in any authorized activity;
      (16)   Sell food, beverages or merchandise or solicit donations for any individual, group, club, company or corporation;
      (17)   Carry, use or possess firearms or dangerous weapons of any nature within any park, provided; however, this section shall not apply to law enforcement officers when engaged in the discharge of their duties;
      (18)   Enter, use or remain within any park between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m., unless a town sponsored event is delayed or a written permit therefor has been obtained from the Town Manager or his or her designee;
      (19)   Bring upon, possess, consume or display any beer, wine, whiskey or other intoxicating liquor or beverage or controlled substances or the containers thereof within the confines of any park and recreation areas. It shall be prohibited for a person under the influence of alcohol or any controlled substance to enter or remain in a recreation facility or program and such person or persons shall immediately leave upon the request of a police officer, recreation personnel, designated volunteers or other persons specified; and/or
      (20)   Leave a boat, kayak, jet-ski or any other personal watercraft tied to any town-owned dock, pier, or gazebo for any length of time.
   (b)   This section shall not apply to any town authorized sales at the central building on the town park lot pursuant to § 4-1(a) of this code.
(Ord. passed 11-7-2002; Ord. 2014-2, passed 3-6-2014; Ord. 2017-9, passed 9-6-2017)  Penalty, see § 10-7
§ 10-4  ADDITIONAL PROVISIONS.
   (a)   No open fires are allowed. All fires must be contained in grills provided by the town.
   (b)   Flagrant misuse of parks and recreational facilities will result in forfeiture of future use and reservation privileges.
   (c)   The Town Manager and the Recreation and Appearance Committee have the authority and responsibility to recommend rules and regulations governing the use and maintenance of parks and recreational facilities to the Board of Aldermen for their consideration. Such rules and regulations become effective as adopted by the Board of Aldermen.
   (d)   Any requests for special events or use of the parks and recreational facilities shall be presented to and approved by the Town Manager or his or her designee. If these requests are approved, a permit will be issued and any fees will be assessed by the Town Manager or his or her designee.
(Ord. passed 11-7-2002)  Penalty, see § 10-7
§ 10-5  DECLARATION OF CLOSED PARK OR RECREATION FACILITY.
   Any section or part of any park, recreation area or facility may be declared closed to the public by the town at any time and for any interval of time, either temporarily or at regular and stated intervals (daily or otherwise) and closed to certain uses.
(Ord. passed 11-7-2002)
§ 10-6  RULES AND REGULATIONS SET BY THE TOWN.
   (a)   Users of all parks and recreation facilities shall adhere to not only this section, but also to any rules and regulations set by the town and Recreation and Appearance Committee as adopted by the Board of Aldermen.
   (b)   The Town Manager or his or her designee and any authorized town employee and any law enforcement agency shall have the authority to eject from any recreation facility, any person acting in violation of this section, or in violation of other rules and regulations enacted pursuant to this section by the Recreation and Appearance Committee as adopted by the Board of Aldermen.
(Ord. passed 11-7-2002)
§ 10-7  VIOLATION.
   Any person who shall violate the provisions of this article shall be guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than $150, or imprisonment for not more than 30 days or both, in the discretion of the court, as provided by G.S. § 14-4.
(Ord. passed 11-7-2002)
§ 10-8 – 10-19  RESERVED.
ARTICLE II.  BEACHES
DIVISION 1.  GENERALLY
§ 10-20  CERTAIN ACTIVITIES ON BEACHES PROHIBITED.
   (a)   Camping overnight on the beach or otherwise using the beach as a domicile is hereby prohibited.
   (b)   Glass bottles or glass containers of any type are prohibited on the beach.
   (c)   Violators of this section shall be subject to a fine of up to $500 or six months in jail or both in the discretion of the court.
(Ord. passed 8-6-1992)
§ 10-21  REGULATING ACTIVITIES NEAR SANDBAG REVETMENTS AND GEOTEXTILE TUBES.
   (a)   It shall be unlawful for any person to walk, run, swim, surf, or boat or place items on any sandbag revetments, including any geotextile tubes, located within or adjacent to the town.
   (b)   All violators shall be assessed a $100 fine per occurrence.
   (c)   This section shall not apply to any authorized, marked crossover or designated beach access.
(Ord. 2015-2, passed 2-5-2015; Ord. 2015-3, passed 3-5-2015; Ord. 2017-11, passed 11-1- 2017)
§ 10-22  AUTHORITY OF POLICE OFFICERS AS TO SWIMMERS.
   (a)   Those persons who shall be duly appointed as police officers of the town, shall have the power and authority to supervise, regulate and/or prohibit physical activities and swimming on the beaches and in the Atlantic Ocean and waters of the sound, when in the estimation of those officers, hazards or dangers exist that constitute threats to the health, life or safety of a person or persons within the waters or immediately contiguous areas.
   (b)   Nothing herein shall be construed to impose a duty upon the police or town officials to patrol the beaches, act as lifeguards or make such determination on a daily basis. The town police, as well as the town assumes no responsibility for accidents as a result of someone’s negligence.
   (c)   Any person who shall fail to obey the directions and instructions of the personnel with regard to any of the matters and things above set forth over which they have power and authority, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be subject to arrest by the personnel and shall be subject to punishment as provided in G.S. § 160A-285.
(Ord. passed 6-3-1999)
§ 10-23  DIGGING OF HOLES ON BEACH STRAND.
   (a)   To help prevent personal injury and damage to property, it shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation within the corporate limits of the town to dig into the sand on any part of the beach strand greater than 12 inches deep, without having a responsible person attending the area to prevent any person or persons from walking into any existing hole and risking personal injury, and to allow public safety vehicles the ability to respond to emergencies without risk of damage to equipment or personal property. Prior to leaving the area and 30 minutes prior to sunset, any hole greater than 12 inches deep shall be filled to level with the surrounding area, leaving the area in the same general condition in which it was found.
   (b)   Persons violating this section shall be cited and punished pursuant to the provisions of G.S. § 14-4.
(Ord. passed 4-5-2007)
§ 10-24  UNATTENDED BEACH EQUIPMENT PROHIBITED.
   The following words, terms and phrases, when used in this chapter, shall have the meaning ascribed to them in this section, except where the context clearly indicates a different meaning.
   AWNING. A roof-like covering extending over a certain area and used as a shelter.
   BEACH EQUIPMENT. Any personal items that are designed or manufactured for use, or actually used, on the beach or in the adjacent tidal waters. Examples include with limitations: chairs, lounges, umbrellas, cabanas, tents, canopies awnings, horseshoes and stakes, sailboats, kayaks, paddle vessels, sailboards, surfboards, fishing gear, sporting equipment, rafts, flotation devices, beach toys, baskets, bags, towels, coolers and other personal effects. BEACH EQUIPMENT shall not include municipal trash containers, signage or structures placed by a governmental agency, items placed by a bona fide conservation agency or organization (such as signs or protection devices for turtle nests or equipment approved for use by duly licensed mobile vendors).
   BEACH STRAND. The area of the beach considered public trust area.
   CABANA. A collapsible shelter resembling a cabin with at least one open side.
   CANOPY. An omamental roof-like structure supported by more than one pole providing shade and/or protection from weather events.
   TENT. A collapsible shelter of fabric stretched and sustained by poles and used for camping or other recreational outdoor activities.
   UMBRELLA. A collapsible shade for protection against weather consisting of fabric stretched over hinged ribs radiating from a center pole.
(Ord. 2014-9, passed 8-7-2014)
§ 10-25  PLACING OBSTRUCTIONS ON BEACH.
   (a)    Except as provided by a specific provision of this code, all beach equipment must be removed from the beach by its owner or permitted user on a daily basis. All personal items and beach equipment unattended and remaining on the beach strand between 9:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. will be classified as litter and will be removed and disposed of by the town. This section is in effect year round.
   (b)   A business that rents beach equipment may not place or erect said equipment strictly for advertising purposes only. Such business shall abide by all rules and regulations pertaining to their particular license that has been issued and must adhere to the installation and removal policies as outlined within this section.
   (c)   All beach equipment shall be set at least 20 feet from any sea turtle nest. No beach equipment shall be placed seaward of a sea turtle nest for a distance of 10 feet north and south of a direct line between the sea turtle nest and the Atlantic Ocean.
   (d)    No beach equipment may be placed within a 25 foot perimeter of an emergency access or any beach strand access point.
(Ord. 2014-9, passed 8-7-2014; Ord. 2015-7, passed 8-6-2015)
§ 10-26  PENALTIES.
   Unless otherwise provided for, any person who shall violate this division 1. shall be subject to a civil penalty in an amount of $50 for each offense. Each day that a person is in violation of this division 1. shall constitute a new and separate offense.
(Ord. 2014-9, passed 8-7-2014)
§§ 10-27 – 10-29  RESERVED.
DIVISION 2.  MOTOR-DRIVEN VEHICLES AND HORSES ON DUNES AND BEACHES
§ 10-30  PURPOSE.
   In order to prevent and abate nuisances on public and private property, to minimize the possible adverse environmental impact on dunes and vegetation, and to supervise and regulate in the interest of public health, safety, comfort, convenience and welfare, the Board of Aldermen enacts the provisions of this division.
(Ord. passed 10-3-1990; Ord. passed 9-18-1991; Ord. passed 10-1-1992; Ord. passed 1-10-2000)
§ 10-31  DEFINITIONS.
   For the purpose of this division, the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning.
   ACCESSWAYS.  Designated points or easements where vehicles may legally travel from public roads to the beach strand, public or private.
   BEACH STRAND.  The area of the beach considered public trust area.
   COMMERCIAL FISHERMAN.  A citizen who possesses a valid commercial fishing license and related gear (at least 100 yards of net, a fishing boat and two additional crew members).
   DISABLED PERSON.  An individual who is unable to walk without the aid of other persons or equipment and who has lost total use of either one or both legs or a person who has been identified as disabled by the state or an agency of another state or the federal government.
   DUNE BUGGY. A small, lightweight, open automotive vehicle equipped with oversize, low- pressure tires for traveling along sand beaches.
   ESTUARINE AREA.  The public trust area bordering the New River as measured by the mean high water line.
   FRONTAL DUNE.  The dune closest to the beach strand.
   HORSE.  A solid-hoofed, herbivorous, four-legged mammal including stallions, mares, geldings, mules, ponies, donkeys and the like, capable of being domesticated and ridden by Homo sapiens.
   JOYRIDING.  Operating a motor powered vehicle carelessly and heedlessly in willful or wanton disregard of the rights or safety of others and/or without due caution and circumspection at a speed or in a manner so as to endanger or be likely to endanger any person or property.
   MOTOR-DRIVEN VEHICLE.  Any vehicle capable of transporting persons or property, consisting of four or more wheels and propelled by a gasoline, electric or other type of motor.
   NORTH TOPSAIL BEACH.  The incorporated area of the county between the Atlantic Ocean, New River Inlet, the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway and the Surf City line.
   PERMISSIBLE DRIVING AREA.  The public trust area bordering the New River that has been designated as an area in which four-wheel drive vehicles are allowed to drive. This area is:
      Commencing at a point in the intersection of the centerline of River Road and the approximate mean high waterline of the New River Inlet, said point having coordinates of North = 287928.76 and East= 2498718.99 NAD83(2011), said point being THE TRUE POINT OF BEGINNING: thence from the above described true point of beginning and leaving said River Road centerline and along the approximate mean high water line the following courses and distances: South 24 degrees 53 minutes 10 seconds East 223.60 feet, South 48 degrees 55 minutes 21 seconds East 152.08 feet and South 64 degrees 46 minutes 12 seconds East 306.85 feet to a point in said approximate mean high water line, thence leaving said approximate mean high water line South 75 degrees 54 minutes 38 seconds West 517.88 feet to a point, thence North 24 degrees 53 minutes 10 seconds West 407.95 feet to a point in the centerline of River Road, thence leaving said centerline point North 24 degrees 53 minutes 10 seconds West 1,520.72 feet to a post on the southern margin of the existing Bird Sanctuary, thence along said southern margin North 64 degrees 48 minutes 20 seconds East 250.00 feet to a point in the approximate mean high water line of New River Inlet, thence along said approximate mean highwater line South 24 degrees 53 minutes 10 seconds East 1429.07 feet to a point in the centerline of River Road and being the point and place of beginning and containing 12.029 acres as surveyed by Charles Francis Riggs, P.L.S. L-2981 on July 24, 2014. The courses contained within are correct in angular relationship and are referenced to NAD83(2011).
   SAND DUNE AREA.  Any area at North Topsail Beach landward of the mean high-water mark on the ocean front, the intracoastal waterway, New River Inlet and the Surf City line containing mounds of sand.
   SPORT FISHERMAN.  A person possessing one or more rod and reels, bait and tackle who is engaged in fishing as a hobby, recreation, pleasure or as a source of diversion.
(Ord. passed 10-3-1990; Ord. passed 9-18-1991; Ord. passed 10-1-1992; Ord. passed 1-10-2000; Ord. 2014-8, passed 7-9-2014; Ord. 2017-6, passed 7-5-2017)
§ 10-32  BEACH ACCESS DRIVING REGULATIONS.
   (a)   No motor-driven vehicles shall be allowed on the sand dunes of North Topsail Beach other than town, county, state or federally authorized vehicles. The only exception is the “Permissible Driving Area.”
   (b)   Permitted vehicles shall operate only during the hours between 7:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. October 1 - March 31 and the hours between 6:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. April 1 - September 30.
   (c)   Four-wheel drive vehicles only shall be allowed in the area designated as “Permissible Driving Area.” Vehicles entering this designated area shall be obligated to obtain an access pass. A valid hurricane re-entry pass shall be used by current property owners to enter. To obtain passes non- residents shall pay the daily, weekly, annual, or “early bird” fees as designated by the Board of Aldermen in the town’s fee schedule. Vehicles entering this area without an access pass shall be fined as designated by the Board of Aldermen in the town's fee schedule.
   (d)   No motor-driven vehicle shall be allowed on the beach strand unless the vehicle is a factory manufactured four-wheel drive vehicle (exception: farm tractors used by commercial fishermen and dune buggies). Certain specialized vehicles (see § 10-36 ) may be driven on the beach strand by disabled persons. The Police Chief shall decide if a person is disabled according to the definition in § 10-36.
   (e)   The speed of any motor-driven vehicle operating on the beach strand at North Topsail Beach shall not exceed ten mph.
   (f)   No motor-driven vehicle shall at any time cross to the beach strand unless crossing is at accessways designated by the Board of Aldermen as vehicular crossings, public or private.
   (g)   Pedestrians, swimmers and sunbathers shall have the right-of-way over all vehicles being operated on the beach strand.
   (h)   It shall be illegal to ride or walk horses on the beach strand and sand dune area of North Topsail Beach (unless on a public or private road, developed lot or parking lot).
   (i)   No joyriding shall be allowed on the beach strand, sand dune area, and on any public trust area, including the “Permissible Driving Area” of North Topsail Beach at any time. Violation of this section shall be treated as a civil penalty under the law and enforceable by the Police Department.
(Ord. passed 10-3-1990; Ord. passed 9-18-1991; Ord. passed 10-1-1992; Ord. passed 1-10-2000; Ord. 2014-8, passed 7-9-2014; Ord. 2017-5, passed 5-3-2017; Ord. 2017-6, passed 7-5-2017; Ord. 2017-10, passed 9-6-2017)  Penalty, see § 10-39
§ 10-33  COMMERCIAL FISHERMEN.
   Upon proper showing to the Town Manager by a citizen who must use the beach strand for commercial fishing which is his or her livelihood, the citizen may be given permission to drive on the beach strand from the Surf City line to New River Inlet from the day after Labor Day to March 31 of each year. All vehicles and drivers shall conform to § 10-34.
(Ord. passed 10-3-1990; Ord. passed 9-18-1991; Ord. passed 10-1-1992; Ord. passed 1-10-2000)
§ 10-34  PERMIT REQUIREMENTS.
   (a)   Owners of all vehicles allowed to drive on the beach strand shall obtain a permit to do so. This permit is nontransferable and shall be affixed to the upper right side of the vehicle’s windshield (exception: farm tractors used by commercial fishermen and dune buggies shall affix the sticker on the tractor or dune buggy in a place easily seen).
   (b)   All vehicles allowed to drive on the beach strand shall have valid state licenses and registrations (exception: farm tractors). All drivers must have a valid driver’s license.
   (c)   The owner of a permitted vehicle shall be responsible for any person driving the vehicle on the permitted driving area or on any other area which is a violation of this division.
   (d)   All permits to drive on the beach strand shall be issued by the Police Department or persons designated by the Town Manager.
(Ord. passed 10-3-1990; Ord. passed 9-18-1991; Ord. passed 10-1-1992; Ord. passed 1-10-2000; Ord. 2017-6, passed 7-5-2017)  Penalty, see § 10-39
§ 10-35  CLOSING THE BEACH STRAND.
   The Police Chief shall have the authority to close any part or all of the beach to vehicular traffic if, in his or her opinion, vehicular traffic is detrimental to the health, safety and welfare of pedestrians, property or the sand dunes.
(Ord. passed 10-3-1990; Ord. passed 9-18-1991; Ord. passed 10-1-1992; Ord. passed 1-10-2000)
§ 10-36  VEHICLES FOR DISABLED PERSONS.
   (a)   Notwithstanding §§ 10-32 and 10-34, disabled persons who have been issued a driver’s license and permanent registration plates may operate a motorized wheelchair or other similar vehicle, not exceeding 1,000 pounds, gross weight, as specified in G.S. § 20-27.1, with a permit from the Police Department to operate the vehicle on the beach. Operation is permitted only while the disabled individual is in the vehicle. Operation shall at all times be in a safe and prudent manner, giving way to pedestrians at all times, and giving warning before stopping, starting, turning or backing the vehicle. Such vehicles, with permit, may operate on the beach strand year-round.
   (b)   Factory lift vehicles of a four-wheel-drive nature are permitted if used for disabled individuals inside Onslow County Beach Access #3.
   (c)   Full-sized, factory four-wheel drive vehicles for disabled persons can only be operated within Onslow County Beach Access #3. Nonvehicle access to the public beach by disabled persons is available at Onslow County Beach Access #2 and #4. In addition, beach access by vehicle for disabled persons holding a beach driving permit from the town is allowed at the Jeffrey’s property on SR 1568, whereby full-sized, factory four-wheel drive vehicles may be driven onto the beach at the vehicle access and thence northerly as far as Onslow County Beach Access #4 and south as far as Ocean Sound Village/Hampton Colony property line. Movement of the vehicle shall be solely for the purpose of locating suitable sites for enjoyment of the public beach by disabled persons and the operation of the vehicle shall be governed by all provisions of this division. Onslow County Beach Access #3 shall be open year-round. The Jeffrey’s area shall be closed to vehicles between April 1 and September 31.
   (d)   There shall be no charge for vehicle permits for disabled persons.
(Ord. passed 10-3-1990; Ord. passed 9-18-1991; Ord. passed 10-1-1992; Ord. passed 1-10-2000; Ord. 2017-6, passed 7-5-2017)
§ 10-37  SPORT FISHERMEN.
   Oceanfront beach driving is prohibited except for disabled persons with vehicles up to 1,000 pounds and vehicles belonging to licensed commercial fishermen.
(Ord. passed 1-10-2000)
§ 10-38  FEE SCHEDULE.
   The fee schedule for beach driving permits will be as follows:
   (a)   Commercial fishermen, per vehicle:  $20
   (b)   Disabled individual, per vehicle:  No fee.
(Ord. passed 10-1-1992; Ord. passed 1-10-2000)
§ 10-39  PENALTY.
   Any person, firm or corporation who violates any section of this division 2. shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be punished by a fine not to exceed $500 or by imprisonment not to exceed six months or by both. Permits shall also be revoked for any violation of this division 2. for a period of one year.
(Ord. passed 10-3-1990; Ord. passed 9-18-1991; Ord. passed 10-1-1992; Ord. passed 1-10-2000)
ARTICLE III.  BOAT AND WATER SAFETY
§ 10-40  OPERATION OF BOATS IN MANNER ENDANGERING BATHERS.
   It shall be unlawful for any person to operate or pilot a boat or jet ski in the waters of the Atlantic Ocean abutting the town within 100 yards of the shore line of the town or elsewhere along the public beach in any manner as to create a hazard to bathers.
(Ord. passed 6-3-1999)  Penalty, see § 1-5
§ 10-41  OPERATION OF MOTORBOATS AND THE LIKE IN RECKLESS MANNER.
   No person shall operate any motorboat, jet ski or other vessel or manipulate any skis, surfboard or similar device in a reckless or negligent manner so as to endanger the life, limb or property of any person.
(Ord. passed 6-3-1999)  Penalty, see § 1-5
§ 10-42  OPERATION OF MOTORBOATS AND THE LIKE WHILE INTOXICATED.
   No person shall operate any motorboat, jet ski or other vessel or manipulate any skis, surfboard or similar device when intoxicated or under the influence of any narcotic drug, barbiturate or marijuana.
(Ord. passed 6-3-1999)  Penalty, see § 1-5
§ 10-43  OPERATION OF JET SKIS.
   It shall be unlawful to operate any jet ski in the waters of the Atlantic Ocean abutting the town within 100 yards of the shoreline during the period from May 16 to September 30 of any year, except that jet skis may be launched from and returned to the beach on a course approximately perpendicular to the beach. When launching or returning as described above, the jet ski shall be operated as slowly as surf conditions shall permit and in such a manner as to avoid all swimmers or other persons in the water. For the purposes of this article, the term JET SKI shall include wave riders and any other similar vehicles by whatever name.
(Ord. passed 6-3-1999)
ARTICLE IV.  SAND DUNE PROTECTION
§ 10-44  FINDINGS OF FACT AND PURPOSE.
   (A)   The sand dunes within the town are a topographical feature unique to coastal areas, and are a tourist attraction as well as a protective barrier against the dangers of wind, flood and erosion. The sand dunes make a vital contribution to the nature and character of the town as a coastal resort community. The town believes the sand dunes should be preserved, and development on the sand dunes within the town controlled in a manner compatible with their preservation.
   (B)   This article is adopted to preserve and promote the protection of the town by maintaining the existence of natural and constructed dunes that help protect it from the danger of flooding and erosion, and land against the actions of sand, wind and water. The practice of destroying sand dunes and removing vegetation therefrom within the town constitutes a serious threat to the safety of adjacent properties. This article is therefore adopted for the health, safety and welfare of persons living, visiting or sojourning to and in the town, and for the protection of public and private property.
   (C)   The term DUNE used in this article shall refer to any manmade or natural mound of sand, regardless of size.
   (D)   The term FRONTAL DUNE used in this article shall refer to the first manmade or natural mound of sand landward of the highwater mark of the Atlantic Ocean, regardless of height or width, considered to be the first line of defense against impending tides and/or storm surge.
(Ord. 2015-10, passed 10-1-2015)
§ 10-45  CONFLICTS WITH STATE RULES.
   If any provision of this article is in conflict with a rule or regulation adopted by the State Coastal Resources Commission dealing with oceanfront erosion control, then that rule or regulation shall control and apply in lieu of the provision of this article in conflict therewith.
(Ord. 2015-10, passed 10-1-2015)
§ 10-46  TERRITORIAL APPLICABILITY.
   This article shall apply to sand dunes within the corporate limits and boundaries of the town.
(Ord. 2015-10, passed 10-1-2015)
§ 10-47  EXEMPTIONS.
   The provisions of this article do not apply to:
   (A)   The removal of sand, seashells or similar materials for souvenir value in such amounts as may be carried upon the person;
   (B)   Any activity authorized or allowed by G.S. § 113A-103(5)(b)5. for emergency maintenance and repair.
   (C)   Any activity conducted by a federal or state agency for beach renourishment and protection.
(Ord. 2015-10, passed 10-1-2015)
§ 10-48  ENFORCEMENT.
   This article shall be enforced by the local Coastal Area Management Act (CAMA) officer and law enforcement officers of the town. If no person is serving in the capacity of local CAMA officer, this article shall be enforced by the Building Inspector or such person in the Inspections Department as may be designated by the Building Inspector.
(Ord. 2015-10, passed 10-1-2015)
Statutory reference:
   Coastal Area Management Act of 1974, see G.S. 113A-100 et seq.
§ 10-49  DAMAGING SAND DUNES.
   (A)   It shall be unlawful for any person to walk over or cross over any frontal dune except at an authorized, marked crossover or designated beach access.
   (B)   It shall be unlawful for any person to damage, destroy or remove any sand dune or part thereof, or to kill, destroy or remove any trees, shrubbery or other vegetation growing on sand dunes, except in the following locations:
      (1)   The area within the foundation perimeter of any existing structure or any structure to be constructed, as shown on the survey or site plan submitted to the Building Inspector as part of the building permit application process, or to the Planning Board as part of the site plan review process.
      (2)   An area around the perimeter of an existing building or proposed principal building not to exceed a width of 12 feet from the building foundation perimeter.
      (3)   The area within the boundaries of existing driveways and parking areas, or driveways and parking areas to be constructed in accordance with a survey or site plan approved by the Planning Board or other appropriate reviewing town official.
      (4)   On commercial, multifamily, group development, or planned unit development site plans that have been approved by the Planning Board (and Board of Aldermen if required), those areas delineated and designated on the site plan for land-disturbing activity, provided such land-disturbing activity is also undertaken pursuant to the Coastal Area Management Act.
      (5)   In hard-surfaced designated recreation areas.
   (C)   Subsection (B) of this section does not apply to any of the following:
      (1)   Landscaping activities and garden plots, provided the original dune contour is not altered.
      (2)   Water, sewage, or wastewater disposal systems and drainfields.
   (D)   For the purposes of this article, a property owner, or his or her agent, shall be entitled to specify, either by means of their permit for crossover construction or by other written communication to the town, the location on their frontal dune of the private crossover they intend to use. If no crossover location on the frontal dune has been so designated by the property owner, or his or her agent, none shall be construed.
(Ord. 2015-10, passed 10-1-2015)
Cross-reference:
   Vehicles on beaches, see §§ 10-30 et seq.
§ 10-50  REPAIRING DAMAGE CAUSED BY VIOLATIONS.
   It shall be unlawful to fail to repair or restore dunes or vegetation damaged by not complying with this article. Any dune-disturbing activity shall be immediately repaired in accordance with requirements of the Coastal Area Management Act. Failure to repair damage to dunes and vegetation shall constitute a separate violation for each ten days that such failure continues after written notification by the CAMA officer.
(Ord. 2015-10, passed 10-1-2015)
§ 10-51  CRIMINAL PENALTY.
   Any person, firm or corporation who violates any section of this article shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and will be punished by a fine of up to a maximum of $500, depending on the severity of the damage.
(Ord. 2015-10, passed 10-1-2015)
§ 10-52  CIVIL PENALTY.
   If any person, firm or corporation continues to violate or further violates any provision of this article, that person shall be liable to the town for a civil penalty of not less than $500.
(Ord. 2015-10, passed 10-1-2015)
§ 10-53  SEVERABILITY.
   If any section of this article be decided by a court of competent jurisdiction to be unconstitutional or invalid, it shall not affect the validity of this article as a whole, or any section thereof, other than the section so declared to be unconstitutional or invalid.
(Ord. 2015-10, passed 10-1-2015)