Life's a Beach!

Sundae Horn
Life's a Beach!

And ours will have lifeguards this summer!

Dave Hallac, the new superintendent at Cape Hatteras National Seashore has confirmed that the Park Service will provide lifeguards during the summer season of 2015. 

"I made that decision before I came to Manteo," he said in a phone interview. "The acting superintendent Kym Hall briefed me and said 'a decision needs to be made and time is of the essence.' It was important enough to decide right away."

Hallac said that the current plan is for NPS to hire contracted lifeguards again this year, to staff the three beaches in the Seashore that traditionally have lifeguards (Ocracoke, Buxton, and Coquina Beach), and to pay for lifeguard services for seven days a week. NPS has initiated the contract process. 

Despite the "long history of NPS sharing funding with local communities," Hallac decided to find the money in his budget to pay the full cost for lifeguards this year.

Hallac's been busy since he arrived on the Outer Banks two weeks ago – there's "new legislation giving direction with ORVs" and a "beach nourishment project in Buxton getting underway." 

But he's eager to visit Ocracoke and meet with stakeholders and community members. I invited him to join us at an Ocracoke Civic and Business Association meeting. "I'll ensure it happens sooner rather than later," he promised. 

The next day, I received an email from the Seashore's public affairs specialist Cyndy Holda, who says that she and Hallac will try to attend the February OBCA meeting, which is scheduled for the 11th. Stay tuned to the Current for more information!

For background in the ongoing issue of who will pay for Ocracoke's lifeguards, which has been solved for this year, but was a big issue last year, click here.  

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