Dare County Housing Task Force picks up the pace

By on April 27, 2024

Next meeting slated for April 30

Dare County Housing Task Force at the April 16 meeting. (Credit: Mark Jurkowitz, file photo)

The Dare County Housing Task Force, which has significantly picked up the pace of its work, will meet for the third time in two weeks when it convenes at the Dare County Administration Building on April 30.

Among the items on the agenda is an effort to set up a future meeting schedule, select a chairperson and look at ways of possibly retaining the $35 million that the state had awarded the Dare County for affordable housing development.

The election of a chair appears related to a suggestion to rethink and reconfigure the Task Force that was made at its April 16 meeting. At that meeting, County Manager Bobby Outten said that that “maybe it’s time to make [the Task Force] a more community-led group”—something members agreed with.

One sentiment that surfaced from Task Force members at that April 16 meeting was that the county should reconsider its decision to give back the $35 million of state affordable housing money. That money came with a provision that generated a lawsuit from the county’s six municipalities–one that conditioned the funding on restricting the ability of municipalities to regulate affordable housing developments in their communities.

A week earlier, at their April 9 meeting, the Dare County Commissioners unanimously approved a motion ending their housing partnership with Coastal Affordable Housing, LLC and they asked County Manager Bobby Outten to talk to state officials about returning the $35 million allocated for affordable housing that had triggered the controversy.

During the April 16 Housing Task Force meeting, Outten explained that the county had cut its ties with private housing partner Coastal Affordable Housing, LLC, adding that “in my view, once we give the [$35 million] back, the legislation awarding it “becomes moot.”

Still, several Task Force members suggested looking for ways to try and hang on to that money, including Manteo Mayor Sherry Wickstrom, who asked if the county could change the legislation that provided the $35 million, “which we absolutely do need for housing.”

At that same meeting, the Task Force decided to reach out to its state legislators and invite them to a meeting to discuss that legislation and the $35 million. That occurred at a special April 22 Task Force meeting with State Senators Bobby Hanig and Norman Sanderson.



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  • Local

    My question is who is on this task force ist it restraint owners???

    Sunday, Apr 28 @ 12:13 pm
  • Mark Jurkowitz | Outer Banks Voice

    You can find the initial members of the Task Force at this link. https://www.darenc.gov/government/essential-housing

    As I have written in several stories, the Task Force has indicated a desire to expand membership to more members of the community.

    Sunday, Apr 28 @ 2:08 pm
  • Freenusa

    I find the phrase, “retaining the $35 million that the state had awarded the Dare County for affordable housing development”, rather misleading. I believe the state is bribing DC officials because the law undermines DC towns, stripping them of any authority over these “projects”. Also, the only “outfit” eligible to build these “projects” is Coastal Affordable Housing LLC. They really have no experience building these “affordable projects” as CAH LLC, because they were formed not too long before the law was written and passed. I find it very shocking that Manteo is in litigation with the state over the law, that is tied to the money and Mayor Wickstrom, wants the county to “change the legislation”. Doesn’t she understand, the county cannot change NC law and that is why all 6 DC towns have filed law suits?? Government needs to stay out of providing “affordable housing “ for private business owner’s.

    Sunday, Apr 28 @ 2:40 pm
  • Freenusa

    Looks like my last comment was censored. Please tell me why, as u usually do.

    Sunday, Apr 28 @ 8:48 pm
  • Mark Jurkowitz | Outer Banks Voice

    You basically said the same thing in two posts. I used the longer one.

    Sunday, Apr 28 @ 9:17 pm