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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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Economic suffering on the islands

Wednesday 29 April 2009 at 6:00 pm This letter to the editor, published this week,  is from my friend Helen Hudson, who is the librarian at the Dare County Library in Hatteras village:


“April showers were often said to bring May flowers. May, 2009, will be bringing Hatteras Island residents a 12.8 percent increase in electricity costs, as well as a 6.5 percent increase in homeowners' insurance. How can we cope in these hard economic times? I've never seen so many people out of work and using the food pantries. It breaks my heart to see so many businesses closed and/or for sale. Quite a few people are simply leaving the area. I spoke with a gifted teacher who may have to move because the cost of living is so high on the island.

We make every effort to support local businesses. However, we often end up paying resort prices all year long. I think there needs to be a task force addressing the specific needs on Hatteras Island. I'd love to hear others comment on dealing with these issues.”
Read More

Weekend report: Warm weather, heavy traffic, another closure, and Facebook

Monday 27 April 2009 at 1:23 pm Spring was finally in the air this weekend.

It was what most islanders thought was the longest winter they could remember – day after day of wind, cold, and gray skies.  There were precious few of the warmer, sunny intervals that usually punctuate the winter months here.

This weekend was the first this spring that was sunny and warm – in the 70s – even if the wind was somewhat gusty from the southwest.

Hatteras Island was crowded with people, and Highway 12 was busy with vehicles. Read More

Update on pedestrian access to Cape Point

Thursday 23 April 2009 at 2:00 pm The message today on pedestrian access to Cape Point by wading in the water around resource closure is, “Yes, you can.”

Yesterday, I wrote that the National Park Service would no longer allow pedestrians to wade in the water below the mean low tide line to reach the three-tenths of a mile of beach still open at Cape Point.

That was after a two-tenths of a mile closure was expanded to four-tenths of a mile.

I also wrote that the announcement would come in today’s beach access report from the Park Service.

Here is what was in today’s beach access report on this issue:

“On April 19, 2009:  The full beach closure (RESOURCE protection area) located 0.2 of a mile south of Ramp 44 was modified (extended) 300 meters to the south for observed AMOY breeding behavior.  This closure is now 0.4 of a mile in length and there is no ORV or pedestrian access within the resource protection area.”

This is not what I was told yesterday. Read More