As the organization’s chief executive officer, the town manager is responsible for implementing the policies set forth by Nags Head’s Board of Commissioners and exercises management responsibility over all operational staff and departments. The town manager recommends the annual budget and ensures that all local, state and federal laws and regulations are met. The Board appoints the town manager.
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Under North Carolina’s council-manager form of administration, the citizens of Nags Head elect a four-member Board of Commissioners and a mayor. The Board creates a vision for the community by setting the broad policies, goals, and direction of the government including adopting necessary laws.
In September 2020, the Board of Commissioners and staff met for a three-day visioning process, with the purpose of developing a five-year strategic work plan. The idea was to build upon Nags Head's mission, shared values, and legacy. Previously, the Board had adopted the following community goals:
- Preserve our community’s distinctive heritage and unique lifestyle
- Protect our critical natural resources and coastal ecosystem
- Build and promote a sustainable economy that supports residents and visitors
- Plan for orderly and sustainable growth and redevelopment
- Maintain a well-run and efficient government that provides high quality and cost effective services.
With those community goals as a baseline, the Board and staff investigated the foreseeable future and imagined what it would take for the Town to be its best. This resulted in three areas of focus, which are more detailed in the Strategic Plan 2020-2025:
- Reforming Process to Tackle Technical Issues: This strategic direction is designed to make progress on lingering or threatening issues for the community such as groundwater protection, shoreline management, and sanitation. The Board and staff want to ensure the long-term viability and health of the ecosystem and economic vitality of the town. By 2025, Nags Head would have integrated infrastructure to meet all needs; have a long-term focused shoreline management plan; and integrated groundwater management.
- Empowering the Delivery of Consistent and Exemplary Public Service: Town leaders recognize the best way to ensure consistent and exemplary public service delivery is to have an exceptional organization that is strategic and high performing. The components of a high performing team and process for driving results were identified. By 2025, Nags Head has a high performing, strategic organization; a wellinformed, engaged public and staff, and streamlined, efficient public works services.
- Facilitating Collaboration to Address Community Wide Regional Issues: Nags Head is a unique, beautiful place to live and visit. The high quality of life has made the community an attractive place to make a home. The desire to live in Nags Head and the investment in rental housing has impacted the housing affordability, especially for seasonal workers who are the backbone of the small businesses and for the Town’s own Ocean Rescue team.