(a) The Secretary shall develop and present to the Commission for consideration and to all cities and counties and lead regional organizations within the coastal area for comment a set of criteria for local implementation and enforcement programs. In the preparation of such criteria, the Secretary shall emphasize the necessity for the expeditious processing of permit applications. Said criteria may contain recommendations and guidelines as to the procedures to be followed in developing local implementation and enforcement programs, the scope and coverage of said programs, minimum standards to be prescribed in said programs, staffing of permit-letting agencies, permit-letting procedures, and priorities of regional or statewide concern. Within 20 months after July 1, 1974, the Commission shall adopt and transmit said criteria (with any revisions) to each coastal-area county and city that has filed an applicable letter of intent, for its guidance.
(b) The governing body of each city in the coastal area that filed an affirmative letter of intent shall adopt an implementation and enforcement plan with respect to its zoning area within 36 months after July 1, 1974. The board of commissioners of each coastal-area county that filed an affirmative letter of intent shall adopt an implementation plan with respect to portions of the county outside city zoning areas within 36 months after July 1, 1974, provided, however, that a county implementation and enforcement plan may also cover city jurisdictions for those cities within the counties that have not filed affirmative letters of intent pursuant to G.S. 113A-116. Prior to adopting the implementation and enforcement program the local governing body shall hold a public hearing at which public and private parties shall have the opportunity to present comments and views. Notice of the hearing shall be given not less than 15 days before the date of the hearing, and shall state the date, time and place of the hearing, the subject of the hearing, and the action which is to be taken. The notice shall state that copies of the proposed implementation and enforcement program are available for public inspection at the county courthouse. Any such notice shall be published at least once in one newspaper of general circulation in the county at least 15 days before the date on which the public hearing is scheduled to begin.
(c) Each coastal-area county and city shall transmit its implementation and enforcement program when adopted to the Commission for review. The Commission shall afford interested persons an opportunity to present objections and comments regarding the program, and shall review and consider each local implementation and enforcement program submitted in light of such objections and comments, the Commission's criteria and any general standards of review applicable throughout the coastal area as may be adopted by the Commission. Within 45 days after receipt of a local implementation and enforcement program the Commission shall either approve the program or notify the county or city of the specific changes that must be made in order for it to be approved. Following such changes, the program may be resubmitted in the same manner as the original program.
(d) If the Commission determines that any local government is failing to administer or enforce an approved implementation and enforcement program, it shall notify the local government in writing and shall specify the deficiencies of administration and enforcement. If the local government has not taken corrective action within 90 days of receipt of notification from the Commission, the Commission shall assume enforcement of the program until such time as the local government indicates its willingness and ability to resume administration and enforcement of the program. (1973, c. 1284, s. 1; 1975, c. 452, s. 3; 1977, c. 771, s. 4; 1989, c. 727, s. 130.)