Moravian Church V.I. Conference Gets DPNR Extension on Dock Until September 9 Hearing

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CORAL BAY ­— The V.I. Department of Planning and Natural Resources St. John Coastal Zone Management (CZM) committee has agreed to meet with officials of the Moravian Church on September 9 to discuss the issue of the unauthorized and unpermitted floating docks attached to the church’s concrete dock at Parcel No. 10, Estate Emmaus No. 2, Coral Bay Quarter, according to church council officials.

“It is our hope that during our meeting we can achieve an amicable resolution on the matter that is in the best interest of the Church and the St. John Community,” Superintendent Eulencine Christopher of the Moravian Church Virgin Islands Conference said in an August 21 release.

“The floating docks were deployed by some persons in Coral Bay without the Church’s authorization and the Church subsequently received a citation and was instructed to obtain a permit or remove the docks,” Christopher explained.

In response to a request from the Moravian Church V.I. Conference, DPNR Commissioner Designee, Dawn Henry, Esq., agreed to meet and also issued a stay on the citation that required the removal of the unpermitted floating docks, according to Christopher.

“The signs and floating docks will remain while DPNR and the Church seek to resolve the matter,” Supt. Christopher stated in a prepared statement. “The Church had been advised by DPNR that the permitting process is very involved and among its requirements are an application and approval from the Army Corps of Engineers which takes a minimum of two years to obtain.”

“The Moravian Church is mindful that while there is great appreciation for maritime activities, we must seek a holistic approach in addressing the needs and concerns of the entire community, as well as the boating community,” Christopher added. “The Moravian Church will comply with the law and all applicable regulations.”

“(The Moravian Church) will continue to be a pillar of strength and hope in the Coral Bay community and is grateful to God for the lands which it graciously shares with others,” concluded Christopher. “As we work together, the Church, the Community and the Government to resolve this matter, it our hope that in the spirit of cooperation we can do what is most beneficial for all persons.”