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Hi, and welcome to my "Editor's Blog"! In this space I'll be attempting to keep our readers informed on fast-breaking news and issues affecting our islands. Visit often. There's a lot going on!

Enjoy the Island Free Press and, even more importantly, enjoy our wonderful barrier island!!!

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Judge Terrence Boyle: In his own words

Friday 29 November 2013 at 4:50 pm

For your reading pleasure this holiday weekend, the Island Free Press is sharing the transcripts of federal Judge Terrence Boyle’s two status conferences this year to hear updates on the 2008 consent decree that ended a lawsuit against the National Park Service by environmental groups.

Defenders of Wildlife and the National Audubon Society, represented by the Southern Environmental Law Center, sued the Park Service over its lack of an off-road vehicle management plan.

Dare and Hyde counties were defendant-intervenors.

All parties settled the lawsuit with a consent decree that dictated management of natural resources at the park until there was an ORV plan in place.

The terms of the consent decree were to end when the ORV plan became effective, which happened in February, 2012.

However, Boyle apparently does not consider the case closed and has continued to monitor resource and ORV management at the seashore.

Read More

Beach access advocacy groups: By the numbers

Friday 22 November 2013 at 3:37 pm

Over the two months, we have published a series of blogs that cast light on the finances of the five environmental activist groups that are involved in lawsuits that have had and will have a profound effect on our islands.

We looked at Form 990, the form that non-profit, tax-exempt organizations must file with the Internal Revenue Service.

We presented the numbers without comment, though I’m sure many of you have found, as I have, that some of those numbers are attention getting. Others are just….well, interesting.

The first week, we looked at the Southern Environmental Law Center, which is the tie that binds the others.  SELC is based in Charlottesville, Va., with an office in Chapel Hill, N.C., and is representing the other environmental groups in three major lawsuits in the federal courts that have or will affect our life and lifestyle and economy.

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Let’s put Susan and Barbara over the top

Friday 15 November 2013 at 4:31 pm

Susan West and Barbara Garrity-Blake are normally patient women, but when it came to a project near and dear to their hearts, their patience wore thin.

Their goal was to produce a multi-media, online exhibit to bring audio and photography together to tell the story of life on the Outer Banks through oral histories.

“Coastal Voices” would build on an oral history project that Garrity-Blake had started a decade ago.

The two women were working with the National Park Service and its recently retired Outer Banks Group historian Doug Stover on funding for “Coastal Voices.”

Year after year, the funding did not come through.

However, Park Service officials told them that they were hopeful that maybe in the 2014 budget, the funds would show up.

Garrity-Blake had already conducted several oral history workshops for folks interested in working on the project.  They had folks ready to go.

So they started exploring other options to make “Coastal Voices” a reality and found Kickstarter, a web site that helps creators fund projects and dreams.

They sat down and came up with a bare-bones budget -- $8,400 – and started a campaign to raise the money on Kickstarter by Monday, Nov. 25.

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National Wildlife Refuge Association: By the numbers

Friday 08 November 2013 at 4:50 pm

This is the last in a series of blogs that will look at the finances of the five environmental activist groups that are involved in lawsuits that have had and will have a profound effect on our islands.

We will look at Form 990, the form that non-profit, tax-exempt organizations must file with the Internal Revenue Service.

In these blogs, we will be all about the numbers only, such as income, expenses, salaries, and program expenses.

We will present the numbers without comment, though I’m sure many of you will find, as I have, that some of those numbers are attention getting. Others are just….well, interesting.

The numbers is this blog don’t reflect everything on the tax return, but there will be a link to the entire Form 990 for each group if you are interested in digging further.

The first week, we looked at the Southern Environmental Law Center, which is the tie that binds the others.  SELC is based in Charlottesville, Va., with an office in Chapel Hill, N.C., and is representing the other environmental groups in three major lawsuits in the federal courts that have or will affect our life and lifestyle and economy.

Read More

National Parks Conservation Association: By the numbers

Friday 01 November 2013 at 5:54 pm

This is the fourth in a series of blogs that will look at the finances of the various environmental activist groups that are involved in lawsuits that have had and will have a profound effect on our islands.

We will look at Form 990, the form that non-profit, tax-exempt organizations must file with the Internal Revenue Service.

In these blogs, we will be all about the numbers only, such as income, expenses, salaries, and program expenses.

We will present the numbers without comment, though I’m sure many of you will find, as I have, that some of those numbers are attention getting. Others are just….well, interesting.

The numbers is this blog don’t reflect everything on the tax return, but there will be a link to the entire Form 990 for each group if you are interested in digging further.

The first week, we looked at the Southern Environmental Law Center, which is the tie that binds the others.  SELC is based in Charlottesville, Va., with an office in Chapel Hill, N.C., and is representing the other environmental groups in three major lawsuits in the federal courts that have or will affect our life and lifestyle and economy.

Read More