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Sunday, May 19, 2024

Podcast Dec. 15 – Deals for developers, homeowners associations, red-light cameras, and more

We start this week with a return to Carolina Beach. Last week we discussed both the town’s financial problems and the unhappy reaction of one town official who took to Facebook to criticize the suggestion that the town was in bad financial shape. This week, we discuss Carolina Beach Mayor Joe Benson’s response to questions about how the town will replenish its savings account while still financing ongoing capital projects.

Plus, we revisit the City of Wilmington’s efforts over the last six months to reach a deal with the Village at Mayfaire. The city fined the condo association $20,000 in April for cutting down around 50 Oak trees. We discuss the pattern of cutting deals with developers as opposed to the treatment of individuals or small businesses, whom the city more aggressively pursues code enforcement against.

Then, it’s time to talk about Homeowners Associations. Reporter Johanna Ferebee has been researching the near-ubiquitous groups to answer a host of questions: where do they come from? What gives them their power? How are they regulated? And can they become towns on their own?

Ferebee’s research is ongoing, so if you have questions, comments, or a story to tell, feel free to reach out at

Last, it’s time to talk about red-light cameras and towing, two facts of life in our area that many have raised issues with. That includes the state’s engineering board, which recently ruled that Wilmington’s red-light cameras were illegally installed. It also includes many in the town of Carolina Beach, where complaints of predatory towing led to efforts to protect residents — these efforts were put on hold by Florence, but town council is now ready to address them again.

If you missed any of these stories you can catch up below, then take a deeper dive with our weekly podcast.

Mayor of Carolina Beach responds to concerns about town finances

Wilmington has spent months working on deal for Mayfaire developer that cut down 50 oaks

Here’s how Homeowners Associations get their considerable, sometimes subjective, control over residents

Engineering board rules Wilmington’s red-light cameras installed in violation of state law

With Carolina Beach towing issues on council’s back burner, one company still violating rules

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