Local News

Value of Land Linked to Tall Ships Event in Question

Posted January 12, 2007 2:58 p.m. EST
Updated January 12, 2007 10:37 p.m. EST

— Officials disagree over the value of land deeded to the state in connection with last summer's Tall Ships event.

Friends of the North Carolina Maritime Museum, which organized the event over the July 4 weekend, deeded 36 acres along Gallants Channel to the state, as well as more than $5 million in debt the group had incurred for site improvements.

Council of State members were told the property was worth about $36 million, but the Carteret County tax assessor recently valued the property at $3.6 million, a tenth of the supposed value.

There has been no word on the source of the $36 million estimate.

The dispute is the latest controversy associated with the Tall Ships event:

  • Long lines created traffic jams and forced some ticket holders to be turned away from the event.
  • State officials took a taxpayer-funded ferry ride for an up-close view of the festivities.
  • The national Tall Ships sponsor and the Friends of the North Carolina Maritime Museum have squabbled over payments.
  • State taxpayers might wind up bailing out the event, which still has thousands of dollars in unpaid bills.