Currituck Board postpones vote on noise measure

By on May 1, 2021

Supporters of the change say current noise rules impact operations at places like the Whalehead Club. (Photo credit:

Update: At their May 3 meeting, the Currituck County Commissioners postponed any vote on the controversial noise ordinance until their next meeting on May 17. In making the announcement, Commissioner Bob White referred to what he characterized as significant public confusion about what the revised ordinance would and would not do. The revised ordinance was first proposed at the board’s April 5 meeting when White moved to continue the discussion at the April 19. The commissioners, however, then voted to move the item to the May 3 meeting.

Currituck Board to vote on noise proposal

Amid concerns about the impact on the quality of life in residential neighborhoods, the Currituck County Board of Commissioners will vote on revisions to the county’s noise ordinance at its meeting Monday, May 3.

If passed without changes, the revised noise ordinance would remove restrictions on the number of excessive noise permits that can be issued. Currently, the county is only allowed to issue two permits per year per location. The draft proposal includes residential neighborhoods in the permit process.

The revised ordinance was first proposed at the board’s April 5 meeting when Commissioner Bob White moved to continue the discussion at the April 19. But the commissioners voted to move the item to the May 3 meeting for a vote.

Speaking at the April 5 meeting, Currituck County Attorney Ike McRee said the current ordinance is so restrictive in terms of how many permits can be issued that it could impact operations at county facilities, especially the Whalehead Club and Historic Corolla Park.

“You can imagine from our Travel and Tourism Department — that would end their ability to have weddings, or perhaps a number of other events, at Historic Corolla Park. And of course, it would have a heavy impact and cause the same problems for a number of wedding venues…throughout the county,” McRee said.

Also speaking at the meeting, Commissioner Bob White, who lives in Corolla, agreed, noting that “it turns out to be a problem that you can only have two events a year in an area like ours where you have multiple weddings going on. And we hold multiple events for the county at our parks, so it even affected us at a county level.”

Commissioner Paul Beaumont, however, expressed concern about the impact on residential areas.

“Not everybody on the Outer Banks is a vacationer, and there are quite a few people who live there,” he asserted. Beaumont also noted that the increase on weekends to 80 decibels within 25 feet of a home in a residential area could be disruptive.

“Decibels are not lineal,” he said. “It is an exponential increase.”

Those worries were echoed by Corolla resident Clark Hoyt.

“It means that if your neighbor happens to rent their home during the summer season, all of a sudden the noise that can emanate from there goes up by thirty percent. It just changes the character of residential neighborhoods,” he said.





  • Grandyguy

    as long as the noise sounds like $money$ it will be tolerated – u can take that to the bank!
    residents (workers) opinions be damned

    Saturday, May 1 @ 11:56 am
  • Bobby

    Is there any residents in Currituck County that don’t live on the beachfront?? Maybe the rest of us should form our own county, we sure don’t get the same services and attention. We just pay the same taxes.

    Saturday, May 1 @ 3:58 pm
  • Dee

    Are you kidding Bobby? Without occupancy taxes, Currituck County
    couldn’t pay its bills.
    In Corolla, we wanted to be our own town, control our growth, and make our own rules,
    and attempt to better our community.
    But our “leaders” at the County level and at Twiddy waged a campaign
    against independence. $$$$$
    If you want to sound off Bobby, examine the spending. Figure it out for yourself.

    Sunday, May 2 @ 9:29 am
  • Publius

    I think it’s important to balance criticism of any particular tourism-related issue with the knowledge that the tourism economy of Currituck County is something to be celebrated because it brings a higher quality of life to virtually all its citizens either directly or indirectly. It’s not perfect, by any measure, but its impact has brought levels of economic prosperity to the County that would be scarcely been imaginable a few short decades ago and that’s something to embrace.

    In terms of the Corolla town argument, something has to be mighty fine indeed not to have two sides and additional municipal infrastructure carries with it additional taxation, complexity, cost, and regulatory components (of note, Currituck is one of only three other counties in the 100-county state without a Town). I’m not against that argument and it’s worth on ongoing conversation but to be successful it’s critical to fully understand what we’re asking for in terms of a new level of government that will need to be funded by the taxpayer. As far as Twiddy’s involvement, they most likely do what all local small businesses do across the State–advocate for their homeowners, their vacationers, and their own team’s quality of life. To expect them to do otherwise would be to expect our small businesses to reject their own clients and customers not to mention their own staff.

    I also respectfully differ on whether workers (or citizens) opinions are disregarded; this topic is a Commissioner issue and each and every one of those Commissioners are elected by local citizens. Criticizing an issue is fine but to make the best decisions that do the most good for the most people it’s important to bring context to any single issue.

    Tuesday, May 4 @ 9:19 am
  • Otis

    No Dee, I think the issue for not incorporating had little to do with County leaders or Twiddy but instead in was the tax payers of Corolla who said we can’t afford this. Look at Duck, they had the same problem but instead said lets decide our own destiny and although expensive bit the bullet and incorporated. Corolla can still do it today but I doubt they will.

    Tuesday, May 4 @ 2:12 pm
  • Mermaid

    You need to think this out because this will cause more than just noise. SAGA single handily ruined KDH andNags Head for the small family vacation and local residents.There so called HOUSES are rented sub weekly. So you get 2 weddings a week with rehearsal dinners, welcoming guests parties, etc. These EVENTS rock your house 5-6 days a week . You need to plan on staying inside and turning up the TV to 50 volume. Do not forget that all this takes truck after truck BACKING IN with alarms to put up tents, chairs
    Caterers and the wonderful portapotties parked on your 2 lane road.

    Tuesday, May 4 @ 4:43 pm
  • charlie

    In many states people actually vote on their budgets… In a number of states residents AND property owners vote.. It is the old democratic idea… Taxation without Representation…Imagine of property owners could vote on Currituck’s budget????

    Wednesday, May 5 @ 10:43 am
  • waaambulance and french crys

    Take your rich self back north if you don’t like the noise. Oh wait, that’s probably why you left. How does this kind of sloppy topic get attention in Currituck? You live in a tourist destination. You bought an expensive home and expect people to sweep your porch for you. Sounds like a crying baby that lost its pacifier. If you don’t like the noise maybe you should try going deaf for a change.

    Thursday, May 6 @ 2:00 pm
  • Dee

    No Otis, the folks in Corolla did not vote against being a town. The folks on the mainland did.
    The whole County voted. It is unfair to let Grandy or Crawford decide what’s best here.
    The Commissioners have consistently voted their own best interests, not the interests of Corolla or Carova.
    Just imagine what it would be like if we could count on our representative (Fat Bob) to
    represent the interests of the residents of Corolla.
    Example: for over 10 years we have requested a playground for the “Historic Corolla Park”.
    Never could get it done. The playground would be for the use of tourists and resident families. But not until this year did our lords the County decide to grant us this blessing. Why? There was never money in the budget. Why not? Where did the occupancy taxes go? Why? Where the hell is Fat Bob? Be careful. Even the “rich” as you refer to them are getting testy.

    Saturday, May 8 @ 4:36 pm