Rockaway Residents Ignore Beach Regulations
There is a small group of Belle Harbor and Rockaway Park residents and beach goers who insist on ignoring signs that instruct them to keep dogs off the boardwalk and beach, but who are also now leaving certain byproducts of their dogs behind.
Lorraine Verdemare of Belle Harbor often watches her three grandchildren and takes them down to the beach near Beach 123 Street.
She is forced to move further down because flies are circling above their heads in the hot sun. Some people who live in her neighborhood are bringing dogs onto the sand and the boardwalk and refusing to pick up after the pooches when they relieve themselves, turning the beaches of Belle Harbor into a feces and urine covered mess.
"I love animals and dogs, but you have to pick up after them," Verdemare said. "You can't disregard the people because you have a dog."
She continued to say that the problem began last year, and that she has been diligently trying to get someone to enforce the violations that, she says, happen on a daily basis.
The New York City Department of Parks and Recreation says that dogs are not allowed on the sand or the boardwalk in Rockaway from May 1 to October 1.
"We have signs at each street entrance location informing park patrons of the rules, and they face the possibility of a summons if they are caught in violation," Parks Department spokesperson Christina DeLuca said. "As is the case everywhere in New York City, owners are required to pick up after their dogs."