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Graffiti plagues Sheepshead Bay and Homecrest area

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Graffiti is rearing its ugly head again.

According to several people at the recent Sheepshead Bay/Plumb Beach Civic Association (SBPBCA) meeting, the scrawling and defacing of both public and private property is on the rise again after a recent lull.

“We did have graffiti on a lot of the condos (in Plumb Beach) that were going up before they were finished, but they’ve been cleaned up,” said SBPBCA Recording Secretary Laura La Plant.

“Most of the graffiti is now down past Ocean Avenue and by the train stations,” she added.

However, community member Richard Arneman said that graffiti vandals have been marking up the overpass along East 15th Street, and the Homecrest Post Office depot on East 19th Street between Avenues W and Y, as well as several buildings in that area.

Police from the 61st Precinct were in attendance at the meeting and said they will look into the problem.

La Plant said City Council member Michael Nelson has been very aggressive on cleaning up graffiti wherever it occurs and that the organization usually gets prompt results on cleaning it up when they call him.

Nelson spokesperson Steven Zeltser said it was the first the council member heard of the complaints at these specific locations.

After being notified of the complaints by this newspaper, Zeltser said he drove past one of the areas in question and did see the graffiti on the post office depot as well as on several auto garages nearby.

It may take a little longer to remove as usually graffiti is harder to get off in the winter weather than when things warm up, he said.

Zeltser said the Nelson is also working to get more funding to tackle the graffiti problem, which the council member believes is a serious quality of life issue.

Nelson was also one of the co-sponsors on recently passed legislation that would gradually ban the use of roll-down metal security gates on shops to cut down on high rates of graffiti.

Other kinds of security gates — like rolling or sliding grilles, which permit passers-by to window shop and are seen by many as being harder to vandalize — would still be permitted.

This bill would require that after July 1, 2011, any roll-down gate that is being replaced must be replaced with a gate that allows at least 70 percent of the covered area to be visible.

By July 1, 2026, all of the businesses covered by the legislation must have the new higher-visibility gates installed.

The City Council passed the ordinance unanimously recently and the Bloomberg administration also gave the legislation its support.

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