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Letter to the Honorable Veronica White, Commissioner of the New York City Parks Department


Location: Staten Island, NY

I write with regard to the abundance of sand expected to be produced by the dredging of Great Kills Harbor by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (the Corps).

As you know, the Corps has proposed to undertake maintenance dredging of Great Kills Harbor and use the resulting dredged material to restore some of Staten Island's eroded shoreline. It is my understanding that New York City Department of Parks and Recreation (Parks) already identified two prospective recipients of the sand -- Crescent Beach and Wolfe's Pond Park. However, these properties only have the capacity to accept no more than a third of what may be yielded by the dredging.

Given the widespread damage done to our shoreline, it is imperative that we do everything we can to ensure the full allotment of sand is put to beneficial use on Staten Island. Furthermore, if the equipment is already in place to move sand to the two designated areas, it only makes sense to move sand to other areas in need at the same time. As we seek to stretch the value of each federal dollar, it would be foolish not to maximize resources or use this opportunity to replenish other eroded shorelines with the additional sand dredged from the harbor.

There are a number of shoreline areas, including those along Midland Beach, New Dorp and Tottenville, that could be ideal candidates for restoration under this initiative, and I urge Parks to work with the Corps of Engineers to transport and place the additional dredged sand in these areas and other areas of need.

I look forward to working with you and other stakeholders at the state and federal level on this important matter in the coming weeks.

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