Petitions submitted to recall Oak Island Town Council Members over paid parking

OAK ISLAND, NC (WWAY)– Oak Island Town Council’s decision to implement paid parking isn’t sitting well with some residents. 

“As far as I know, I think God put the ocean out there. I don’t think our city council did,” said Sandy Crenshaw, long time Resident of Oak Island.

In fact, five people have submitted petitions and affidavits to recall Charlie Blalock, Sheila Bell, Mark Martin, And John Bach, the four council members who voted for paid parking.   

Which means the fight might not be over. One man who has rental property on the island says if the town takes his parking away, his tenants will have nowhere to park.   

“There’s no way in the world I can have people here if you take my parking spots. I won’t have but two spots for three apartments. No way. I’ll fight it,” said Ron Byrom, Property Owner. 

According to Sara LaVere, the Brunswick County Board of Elections Director, for a recall petition to be sufficient, it must contain the signatures of at least 25% of the registered voters of the town. 

Based on reactions from visitors and residents, paying for parking is not something they agree with. 

“It’s a wonderful thing to have public access to the beach and not have to pay for it. The beach is owned by the people, and it should be assessable by the people,” said Island Visitors, Richard Reho and Gail Dupre.   

“We have no knowledge fully on how it’ll impact the residents, where the money, who it’s going to benefit from the money that comes in, how much they’re paying to get this service done,” said Sandy Crenshaw, Oak Island Resident  

The petitions must be turned into the Brunswick County Board of Elections by February 27th.

LaVere says some have already been submitted.   

If more than 2,050 people in Oak Island sign the petition, and everything is verified, council will have five days to resign. If they do not, a date will be set for a recall election.   

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