Currituck County
NC

Board Agenda

Corolla Jeep Rentals and Tours Appeal of Outdoor Tour Operator License Suspension

Information

Department:County ManagerSponsors:
Category:BOC Policy

Attachments

  1. Printout
  2. 2017-10 Corolla Jeep Adventures - Citation #03
  3. 2017-10 Corolla Jeep Adventures - Citation #04
  4. Outdoor Tour Operator Appeal of Suspension
  5. Memo to BOC - Notice of Suspension (This file has not yet been converted to a viewable format)

Meeting History

Sep 18, 2017 6:00 PM Video Board of Commissioners Regular Meeting
draft Draft

Parties were sworn and Mr. McRee reviewed the proceeding that stemmed from two citations issued to Corolla Jeep Rentals and Tours for violating provisions in the county's Outdoor Tour Operator ordinance. He said operator licenses may be suspended as a result of multiple citations and reviewed the appeal process provided in the ordinance.

At the request of Commissioner White, Commissioner Gilbert moved to allow he be recused from the hearing. Commissioner Etheridge seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously. Commissioner White took a seat in the audience.

Laurie LoCicero provided a brief overview of the violations cited by staff related to improper vehicle identification as is required for tour operators. Planning staff members Jennie Turner and Nick Aisthorpe each provided their sworn testimony and account of the activity that led to the citations being issued. Ms. Turner and Mr. Aisthorpe responded to questions posed by the County Attorney and Board members.

Banks Meredith, Owner of Corolla Jeep Rentals and Tours, provided sworn testimony and confirmed with Ms. Turner that there was no photo evidence of the first violation. He said the same vehicle was cited two days in a row. Mr. Meredith testified the required permit sticker had fallen off of the vehicle, and he had asked an employee to go to the county office to pick up metal placards to replace the stickers since they were not staying securely on the vehicle.

Mr. Meredith said if he was notified of the first violation he would have corrected the problem, as he does not want to jeopardize his business or his customers. Mr. Meredith responded to questions posed by the Board regarding the tour operator permitting process and his understanding of it. He explained his procedures for repair and use of vehicles, and how a license plate erroneously ended up on the wrong vehicle.

As he was a witness to the violation, Commissioner White was sworn. He testified that while speaking with Ms. Turner outside of the Corolla office that morning he saw Mr. Meredith's vehicle drive by with no stickers.

After the hearing, Commissioner Gilbert moved to affirm the staff's findings of violations and issuance of citations and suspension of the license for Corolla Jeep Rentals and Tours for a period of three days. The dates of suspension to be August 31, September 1 and September 2, 2018.

Commissioner Etheridge seconded the motion and the motion passed unanimously.

To: Board of Commissioners

From: Planning Staff

Date: September 15, 2017

Re: Corolla Jeep Rentals & Tours, Inc.

Suspension of Outdoor Tour Operator License

On Thursday, August 31, 2017 at approximately 4:00PM, Jennie Turner witnessed a camouflage hummer with orange “Corolla Adventures” lettering heading north on Ocean Trail (NC12) with tour passengers. The vehicle did not display the required hot pink unique identification number on the passenger side that was visible from the front porch of the Corolla Satellite office (per aerial photography, Ms. Turner was located approximately 100’ from Ocean Trail). A citation notice was emailed to Banks Meredith at 3:06PM on Friday, September 1, 2017.

On Friday, September 1, 2017 at approximately 8:10AM, Nick Aisthorpe witnessed a camouflage hummer with orange “Corolla Adventures” lettering conducting a tour on the 4WD beach area. Mr. Aisthorpe followed the vehicle north from the access ramp for approximately four minutes in order to take a side photograph of the vehicle. The vehicle did not display the required hot pink unique identification numbers on the sides or rear. During the pursuit, license plate #ZJ-2437 was observed by Mr. Aisthorpe. The license plate was not the proper plate for the vehicle. A citation notice was emailed to Banks Meredith at 3:09PM on Friday, September 1, 2017.

The attached citations were issued to Corolla Jeep Rentals & Tours, Inc. on September 1 2017 for above-referenced violations that occurred on Thursday, August 31, 2017 and Friday, September 1, 2017. The Code of Ordinances (Section 8-99) states that Outdoor Tour Operators that are issued two or more citations in a thirty-day period shall be suspended from operating in the designated area for three days; therefore, the attached notice of suspension of license was provided to Corolla Jeep Rentals & Tours, Inc.

Section 8-100 of the Code of Ordinances states that a license holder aggrieved by the suspension or revocation of a license may appeal to the board of commissioners by filing a notice of appeal with the clerk to the board of commissioners within seven days of the adverse action being appealed. Mr. Banks Meredith, owner of Corolla Jeep Rentals & Tours, Inc. requested an appeal of the suspension. Prior to Mr. Meredith’s request, staff did offer to allow Mr. Meredith to select three consecutive days within the few weeks subsequent to the notice of suspension in which to complete the required suspension. Mr. Meredith declined and stated that he would like to appeal the suspension.

RESULT:APPROVED [UNANIMOUS]
MOVER:Marion Gilbert, Commissioner
SECONDER:Mary "Kitty" Etheridge, Commissioner
AYES:Bobby Hanig, Paul M. Beaumont, Mary "Kitty" Etheridge, Marion Gilbert, Mike D. Hall, Bob White
ABSENT:Mike H. Payment