Oak Island Town Council agreed Tuesday to move forward with returning sand to the beach sometime this winter. Council also denied a major rezoning request and put off action on skate park repairs and curbside recycling.

Council instructed Town Manager David Kelly to work with engineers at Moffatt & Nichol on permits to sift and return to the beach sand that covered roadways and rights of way following Hurricane Isaias. The sand is stockpiled on side streets, street ends and at some beach access areas. Kelly said he hoped to have a plan by the end of next week; work won’t happen before December.

Finance Director David Hatten estimated the sifting and placement would cost $500,000. If the town qualifies for disaster aid, it could receive some or all of the money back.

Hatten said pushing the emergency dune line would cost $460,000 and that expense would not qualify for disaster assistance. The town may get help with the estimated $2-million spent to remove construction debris and the $250,000 spent to clear the roadways, he said.

Council agreed to replace lights at the tennis, pickleball and basketball courts – for a cost of about $63,000 – but staff will hold off on signing the contract until after the first of the year. The lights should be ready for the 2021 spring season.

Council voted unanimously to deny Rafi Adi’s request to rezone a large commercial business tract to R6-multi family. The land behind the Beach Life store stretches from SE 58th Street to SE 59th Street.

Adi wanted to put 48 short-term rental units on the now-vacant land. The Planning Board previously recommended denial. Council members said they were concerned about straying from the land use plan, which calls for that area to remain zoned for mixed-use commercial.

Council Member John Bach said the town needs a sustainable tax base and vibrant downtown.

Council also adopted new standards for vendors and food trucks and clarified some rules for commercial on-street parking.

Council agreed in the majority to tour the area recycling facility and discuss the future of recycling at the January 2021 budget retreat.