Washington, DC – Today, U.S. Representative Gregory W. Meeks issued the following statement regarding the surprise announcement by the City that it will be closing Rockaway beach from 91st to 102nd St.:
“I am both surprised and dismayed by the City’s announcement that the busiest stretch of Rockaway beach will be closed this summer. This is a failure on the part of the City to alert lawmakers with sufficient time to act, and a failure to communicate with the community.
“Since Hurricane Sandy ravaged the Rockaways, I have worked side by side with the Army Corps of Engineers to allocate millions in funding to study, repair, and safeguard our coast from future storms. While I understand that an unprecedented four Nor’easters impacted New York this spring, the need for sand replenishment should have been identified sooner so that a solution could have been reached.
“The City must make clear the process by which it assesses coastal erosion and informs elected officials and the public. In addition, I am calling for an emergency meeting with the City, the State, and the Army Corps of Engineers to explore options available this summer, whether we can expedite current plans to build groynes along the ocean front and back bay, and relief for local businesses affected by this abrupt closure.”