By a vote of 5-1 Currituck County Commissioners have levied a summertime parking fee for Carova beach goers.

The fee only applies to the Carova area of the Currituck Banks—the 4WD section north of where the NC12 paved road ends. The fees do not apply to any Corolla beach.

The fees are a response to the growing use of the Carova beaches. The beach serves a recreational use as well as being the only transportation link between Corolla and the village of Carova on the NC/VA state line.

Recent years has seen an extraordinary increase in traffic in the Carova area, and County officials have expressed growing concerns about safety.

According to statements from the Commissioners at the March 5 meeting, the permits are a first step in addressing safety concerns.

The permits are for day use parking on the beach. 

Property owners and residents in the Carova area will receive free permits. Rental property owners will also be able to obtain two additional permits at no charge. Currituck county residents will also receive free permits. The permits are for vehicles and are not transferrable.

Anyone needing a permit will be able to purchase them online or at the County tourism offices at Moyock and Corolla. However, the county has not established what the fee will be and the permits are not yet available. According to the reporting, County officials have indicated they will have the program in place by May 1.

The permit only applies to beach parking. Sightseers or anyone driving through does not need a permit.