Credit Where it’s Due

 Credit Where it’s Due

Dear Editor:

I am writing to provide clarification on the origin of the new Office of Marine Debris and Vessel Surrendering. Two important hidden figures were not included in the story, that were integral in exposing this issue.

Mr. Johan Smiley Sr. contacted The Heart of Rockaway Civic’s President – Mr. Edwin Williams and requested help in removing Marine Debris and abandoned vessels near his Bayside property. Mr. Williams advocated for him by contacting CBS and NY 1 who came to Rockaway and did a story interviewing Mr. Williams & Mr. Smiley.

This story caught the attention of our elected officials Councilwomen Ariola & Brooks-Powers as well as State Senator Saunders. On April 23, 2022, the NY Post picked up the story and helped to start the ball rolling for this new city funded entity.

Hopefully the area nearest Mr. Smiley’s property will have the highest priority.

Karen Sloan-Payne

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