courthouse-clocktowerHere in New Hanover County, the community, elected officials and county staff cooperate to balance a high quality of life with a progressive business and economic climate.

At less than 200 square miles, New Hanover County is the second smallest – geographically – of the 100 North Carolina counties; however, it is home to more than 232,000 people.

New Hanover County is not just a great place in which to live or visit. New Hanover County is also a great place to do business. Tourism, film production, the service and retail sectors are the engines that power our economy.

Our Mission: New Hanover County is committed to progressive public policy, superior service, courteous contact, judicious exercise of authority, and sound fiscal management to meet the needs and concerns of our citizens today and tomorrow.

The government of New Hanover County is committed to ensuring that you are safe, healthy and secure; that is our promise to you.

New Hanover County Manager Chris Coudriet serves as chief administrator of county government and maintains responsibility for administering all departments under the general control of the five-member Board of Commissioners.

The county manager’s work includes the development of the county’s annual budget. The budget is the policy document, financial plan, and operations guide and communications device of county government. It reflects the county’s response to the needs of the community and residents’ requests for services. New Hanover County’s government operates on a $392 million multi-fund budget for the fiscal year that began July 1, 2018 and ends June 30, 2019, serving more than 227,000 residents.

In addition, the manager and his executive leadership team are responsible for aligning the operations of the county to the adopted strategic plan and advancing the county’s mission and vision through five key focus areas: superior education and workforce, superior public health and safety, intelligent growth and economic development, strong financial performance, and effective county management.

Mr. Coudriet has served as the county manager since July 2012. Prior to his appointment, he served as assistant county manager for New Hanover County for four years and as county manager in Franklin and Washington counties, N.C.

Mr. Coudriet has nearly twenty-five years of public administration experience, with more than a decade as a county manager in North Carolina. He has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Urban and Regional Planning from East Carolina University and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of North Carolina at Pembroke.

He is a native of eastern North Carolina. Chris and his wife, Leigh, and two children Montgomery and Silas, reside in Wilmington.

New Hanover County has received the final economic development target analysis report from Jay Garner titled Pathways to Prosperity: New Hanover County’s Plan for Jobs and Investment and it’s critical companion piece, the Competitive Realties Report.

Manager's Message

Economic Development

Posted November 13, 2014 at 3:56 pm

New Hanover County leaders have made economic development a priority. I can point to partnerships in the past 18 months that have led to more than 500 new private-sector jobs being announced and $150 million of private investment that keeps the local tax base healthy and the economy growing. Today, another huge announcement, and the largest in recent times, came to the community. Vertex Rail Technologies is poised to hire more than 1,300 employees (almost all of whom will be local hires) and invest between $55 and $60 million to fabricate railcar tankers with many of the out-take contracts delivered through the assets owned by the NC Department of Transportation and the Port of Wilmington. The investment, as announced by Vertex, is expected to spur more than $1 billion (with a B) of activity across the regional economy.

If we want more jobs and more investment, we need to place our attention on economic development infrastructure. The Cape Fear Public Utility Authority was the first of 3 parties that has and are agreeing in the next week to extend a sewer force main under the Cape Fear River, which will lead to the capacity to extend water and sewer along the US 421 corridor – (yes it’s true, for the most part that important service is not available along our primary industrial corridor). The New Hanover County commission and the Wilmington city council will consider their roles in this tri-party agreement November 17 and November 18 respectively. Making capacity available along US 421 is a critical step and public investment to ensuring more private-sector jobs and more private investment happens across New Hanover County.

Announcements that demonstrate expansion for existing businesses such as Castle Branch, GE, Live Oak, and Fortron, and now the announcement of a new business partner (Vertex Rail Industries) in our community don’t happen by accident. They happen because the community has demanded attention be placed on job creation and local leaders are cultivating the opportunities that bring more and better jobs to our region.


Second citizen satisfaction survey

Posted October 24, 2014 at 11:46 am

If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you’ll remember that I recently wrote about the public promise of New Hanover County. If you’re a first time reader, I want … Read More »


New Hanover County Makes You Safe, Healthy, and Well

Posted October 14, 2014 at 11:49 am

The proverbial question: What do I get for my tax dollars? It’s a fair question, and it’s one that any county government should be in position to answer without fail or … Read More »


Fire Study

Posted October 7, 2014 at 3:33 pm

You may have recently read headlines noting that a professional fire service consultant is recommending that New Hanover County and the City of Wilmington consolidate its fire departments. However, when … Read More »


First Tuesday in November

Posted October 1, 2014 at 1:02 pm

The first Tuesday in November, election day, is only a month away. If you’re already registered to vote in New Hanover County, keep November 4 in your foresight. You have the … Read More »