Beacon Bits: News Briefs for Friday, Oct. 4


Welcome to Beacon Bits, our bi-weekly news briefs delivery system. Twice a week we’ll dig around for morsels of local news that you can put away in one bite. Browse all Beacon Bits here.

Audience members react during Monday’s planning board meeting. Eleven citizens spoke up with concerns about the Compass Hotel.

Compass Hotel Passes Planning Board

The Beaufort Planning board approved site plans Monday for the Compass Hotel coming to Cedar Street in Beaufort on Monday night.

After two hours of presentations, public comment and discussion, the board voted 3-2 to send the project to the Board of Commissioners, which will make a final decision. The board did not, however, approve the plan outright; two conditions and four recommendations were attached to the approval.

Par of the project, which is located in the historic district, must also be approved by the Historic Preservation Commission before construction can begin there.

Take a look at our full write-up on the meeting to learn more about the concerns associated with the project.

Early Voting for Municipal Elections Begins Oct. 16

Early and one-stop (same day registration) voting for municipal elections begins Oct. 16 at the Board of Elections office in Beaufort. Voting is open from 8 am to 6 pm.

Beaufort town positions up for grabs are mayor and three of the five town commissioner seats. Mayor Rett Newton is running unopposed, but two new faces are challenging the three commissioners up for re-election. Read statements from the candidates here.

CCC Launches Student Support Program; Looking for New Board Member

Carteret Community College was just visited by the organization that oversees its accreditation and was found to be in compliance. The college must reapply for accreditation every ten years. Part of the process included a review of the school’s Quality Enhancement Plan, which outlines initiatives to further promote student success. The major part of the plan is called MAPS, or “Mentoring, Advising, Planning for Success.” MAPS will help students plan their studies around career goals, and help students explore career options.

The CCC board of trustees is seeking a new member following the passing of board member Terry Frank. The new member will serve through June 20, 2020, when Frank’s term was set to expire. Interested persons should submit a letter of interest to the Carteret County Public Schools Office of the Superintendent by 5 pm Oct. 22. Learn more about the position and how to apply.

(NC Seafood Festival photo)

Seafood Festival: School Fundraiser; Traffic Impacts

The NC Seafood Festival is partnering with the county school system for a fundraiser today, called “Armband Friday.” A $30 armband allows the wearer to enjoy midway rides until 11 tonight. Armband Sunday will go on as usual.

The annual Triple Bridge Road Race will impact traffic tomorrow, Saturday. The race begins at the eastern base of the new Beaufort bridge at 7 am and continues over the Morehead bridge, then Atlantic Beach bridge.

One westbound land will be closed on the Beaufort bridge, and the Morehead bridge will be one lane only with east and westbound traffic alternating. One lane will also be closed on Arendell St. from the Port to the Atlantic Beach bridge intersection. Morehead City police said they expect the Beaufort and Morehead bridges to be clear by 7:45 am.

Quick Bites

State Road Funds Coming: Beaufort has been allocated $118,908 in Powell Bill funds for fiscal year 19/20. The town should receive the first installment of $59,454 this month. Powell Bill funds are dispersed to participating municipalities based on population and road miles within the municipality.

Hurricane Survey: If you haven’t already, take the Harm’s Way storm survey at and visit This survey will help our community become even more resilient to tropical storms.

Planning Board Canceled: The Beaufort Planning Board meeting for Oct. 10 has been canceled. The next meeting will be held Nov. 14.

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Upcoming Events

Browse local events below or submit your own

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Tue 15

Blood Drive at the Maritime Museum

October 15 at 2:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Thu 17

Kayak Fishing Class

October 17 at 8:00 am - 2:00 pm
Thu 17

Brown Bag Gam Lecture Series at NC Maritime Museum

October 17 at 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Fri 18
Sat 19

Fall Bazaar at Ann Street UMC

October 19 at 8:00 am - 1:00 pm