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Page 44
The Rockaway Times
Stacey Pheffer Amato Wants
Candidate for New York State
Assembly Stacey Pheffer Amato
is asking the National Park Ser-
vice for security cameras in the
Gateway National Recreation
Area. Pheffer Amato's request
comes just a week after new
footage emerged of Howard
Beach jogger Karina Vetrano's
final moments before her Au-
gust 2nd murder in the Spring
Creek section of the park.
"Security cameras are an es-
sential law enforcement tool
that help to deter illegal activity
and aid local law enforcement
in criminal investigations. It
is unthinkable that in this day
and age, in an urban park like
Gateway, we don't have cam-
eras and other infrastructure
to keep an eye on the area and
aid visitors in distress," Stacey
Pheffer Amato said. "I urge the
National Park Service to recog-
nize the unique needs of our
urban parkland and install the
infrastructure that will keep
our families safe."
In a letter to Department
of the Interior Secretary
Sally Jewell, Pheffer Amato
called on the federal agen-
cy to install permanent se-
curity cameras and blue
light emergency call boxes
throughout Gateway which
stretches over some 26,000
acres including sections in
New York City and New Jer-
sey. Pheffer Amato charac-
terized current safety infra-
structure within the Jamaica
Bay Unit of the park as "in-
adequate," given its urban
location and record crowds.
"It's time the National
Park Service recognizes that
Gateway is an urban park,
with very different security
needs than the Grand Can-
yon or Yosemite. Gateway
is right in the middle of the
largest city in the country,
and having cameras and
blue boxes here is simply
a no-brainer," concluded
Pheffer Amato.
or employee can intervene in this
action. The signs specifical-
ly state ‘You cannot leave the
premises without your vehi-
cle for any reason or length of
A call to the towing company
got a prompt return call from a
gentleman who identified him-
self as B&M’s manager, but de-
clined to give a name.
“Various groups and people
trying to say we’re illegal,” he
said. “I don’t knowwhat they’re
trying to do. Stop towing. They
said they’ve been parking there
for 20 years. They’ve been us-
ing that as their extra parking
space. You know, if they have a
driveway and the need a space
for their second car, they’ve
been using it like that.”
When asked about com-
plaints from upset residents,
he said “No has complained to
us directly. It’s been indirect.
Through social media.”
Several residents offered
their opinion that the compa-
ny is known for aggressively
enforcing parking bans and
carting away cars. “When they
had the contract for Sleepy’s
on Beach 116th they would sit
across the street in the drive-
way of the Wharf and grab a car
in ten seconds as soon as they
saw the person walk to 116th,”
one man said.
Others took a different view
on the parking situation. “Who
owns the parking lot?” one man
said. “If they are paying taxes
on the large piece of land, they
can and should choose not to
make it public.”
“The other lot (off Beach 116th
Street) has meters. So people
come down to the beach or
park in Stop & Shop all week-
end … or get on the train. Peo-
ple take advantage of the free
parking lot. So really it should
only be for the businesses.”
On the other hand one
woman noted, “We park there
to go to yoga, after which we
grocery shop, get nails done,
etc. Now, I guess not. Street
parking or biking to yoga
equals no errands done at
those businesses. Too bad for
them. They lose out.”
“He awarded prizes in cate-
gories such as Best Concep-
tual Piece, Best Watercolor,
and Best in Show to name a
few. Those who attended our
opening had the opportunity
to award People’s Choice and
vote on their favorite piece.”
Presented by Markis and
RAA President Dan Guarino,
the prizes were as follows:
Best in Photography-Rob-
ert Mintzes’ “Distance”; Best
Sculpture- the stained glass
“Fallen Leaves” by Renee
Radenberg; Best in Design-
Pam William’s “Organic Rain-
bow”; Best in Painting-“For
Orlando” by Susan Carlo;
Best Watercolor- Ellen Hoyt’s
“House on the Hill’; Best Con-
ceptual- Robert Pino’s photo
“Journey”; Best Acrylic Paint-
ing- “Irish Grandmother” by
Sheila Curran; Best Mixed Me-
dia- Leonid Grinberg’s “Won-
der Box” and Best in Show-
“Interior” by John Grillo.
Markis has worked with a
number of artistic projects
at NPS, including at the Ja-
maica Bay Wildlife Refuge
and Floyd Bennett Field,
and RAA’s “Forbidden Fruit”
large scale summer exhibi-
tion. He admitted that mak-
ing his choices amongst so
many outstanding works was
a tough assignment.
One selection he did not have
to make was the annual Peo-
ple's Choice, which gallery vis-
itors get to cast their votes for
at the opening. A visibly over-
joyed Gina Osse, who attended
with her family, stepped up to
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Continued from Page 3
accept the award for her work
“Scream with Me.”
The art celebration also
spread to RAA’s T-6 Gallery
where artist Frank Traynor
hosted a ‘bon voyage to sum-
mer’ hot dog roast on the
closing day of his “Infinity
Pool” installation exhibition.
It also spread to the shore as
NPS and RAA hosted the Ki-
nesis Project dance troupe
which brought audiences out
for two performances of their
work “Secrets and Seawalls”
at the Fort Tilden beach.
The acoustic duo “White
Merlot and also John Simo-
nelli provided us with a won-
derful performances at our
opening,” Green noted.
Coming up, Green said,
“Brendan Patrick, a young
artist featured in ARTSplash,
will be doing a live painting
during our gallery hours
on October 2. Brendan is a
blind painter. We invite peo-
ple from the community to
come and see Brendan and
talk to him about his tech-
Even as ARTSplash launch-
es, RAA is looking forward to
Portraits, Inksplash, Gifted
and many other upcoming
events. For more information
visit www.rockawayartistsal-
RAA’s ARTSplash exhibition opens at the T-7 Gallery.
(Photos by Dan Guarino)