2013-03-15 / Editorial/Opinion

Lots To Shout About

It’s not an either or. Understandably, a lot of people who see the ocean every day want more damn sand on the beach. And they want it yesterday. It’s tough to argue when they say nothing else matters if another flood happens. You can’t be worried about anything else if a wave is going to wash away Rockaway. Sand, jetties, now. Nothing else matters.

That is a fallacy. If every ounce of energy and every dime is spent on the beaches Rockaway will be a well-protected ghost town.

Rockaway faces a housing and economic crisis. We must welcome and celebrate every positive development. On or off the beach. We need to demand more than sand. We need the city to use Sandy money for better transportation, infrastructure, and small business help. We want the city so invested in Rockaway they’ll fight for us as we face truly frightening issues such as house elevations and flood insurance rates.

Yes, we all view the ocean differently now. When the tide rolls right up to where the boardwalk used to be or right up to oceanfront houses it’s a scary visual. But there’s a big, big difference between what we see now and a perfect storm that sends a river down every block. The sand is coming. And thankfully, according to Senator Schumer, more of it than ever. So, let’s remember, beach replenishment is scheduled and all the shouting in the world won’t get it here sooner.

There are other things to shout about: A great boardwalk that develops from community input (we don’t need a deaf and dumb Parks Department) and an economic plan for businesses in Rockaway (we need the Mayor’s people to actually listen). And most of all we need to shout to political leaders to get out in front of the next crisis: house elevation and flood insurance rates.

You may be busy putting your life back together but we urge you to start reading up on the Biggert- Waters Act and FEMA’s dire warnings about flood maps and their consequences. It will make you want to shout.

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