Front Page: What's In A Zip Code?
At the Holly Ridge Town meeting on Tuesday, April 11th, an item on the agenda was to discuss a proposal regarding the current zip code, 28445. The item to consider was for the Town of Holly Ridge to give Surf City and Topsail Beach the current zip code and to apply for their own. Members of the community came out to speak against the proposal and council members agreed. Holly Ridge would keep their own zip code but would support an effort for Surf City and Topsail Beach to get their own zip code, if able.
For those who have lived in the area or those who are new to it, the current 28445 zip code covers two Counties (Pender and Onslow) and includes 3 very different towns: Holly Ridge, Surf City and Topsail Beach.
Holly Ridge is a mainland community and does not share the oceanfront beauty (or risks) that both Surf City and Topsail Beach share. The zip code can be very confusing when someone is making plans to visit, when researching an area (like a franchise) or when delivering a package.
Residents and business owners of both Topsail Beach and Surf City have complained for years about having to share the zip code with Holly Ridge. During his time in office, Surf City Mayor Zander Guy was able to have Surf City added to the 28445 zip code, which today is still hit or miss when entering the information.
Complications from sharing a zip code with different counties includes sales tax being wrongly applied to the wrong county. Currently Onslow County is 7% and Pender County is 6.75%. Anna White, a resident of Surf City stated that she has had conversations with some of the larger stores in town charging the wrong amount of sales tax. “Most of the time the employees apologize but they always look confused. If it goes on for years that is a lot of money being overcharged to Pender residents.” With a drastic increase in online sales (especially during Covid), a concern has arisen due to which county online companies are paying sales tax to for the sales made.
The Holly Ridge Council members voted to support assisting neighboring Surf City and Topsail Beach in the attempt to get their own zip code, if possible. The process, Councilwoman Pam Hall announced, is not an easy one. Is this a new issue? No. Back in 2015 local residents and business owners in Surf City pushed to get their own zip code and were told that the application could only be submitted every ten years. Both Surf City and Topsail Beach have their own brick and mortar post office buildings. They both provide mail service, mailboxes and shipping services. Home and business delivery is available in all three towns.
Until recently the postmaster of Topsail Beach would travel daily to Sneads Ferry to gather all the mail and packages for Holly Ridge, Surf City and Topsail Beach. At the end of the day she would collect the mail and packages from Topsail Beach, Surf City and Holly Ridge and bring them to Sneads Ferry.