House Passes Plans To Replace Chickamauga Lock

Permanently Protects Right To Fish Below Dams

Friday, October 25, 2013

U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander Friday released the following statement on passage by the U.S. House of Representatives of the Water Resources Development Act, which included a plan similar to his to replace Chickamauga Lock, as well as Senator Alexander’s permanent ban stopping the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from placing physical barriers below dams on the Cumberland River.

“This is a good day for Tennesseans who depend upon and enjoy the waterways our great state has to offer,” Senator Alexander said. “House passage of the Water Resources Development Act moves us further down the path toward replacing Chickamauga Lock, and permanently preserving the rights of Tennesseans and visitors to fish below publicly owned dams on the Cumberland River.”

The U.S. Senate passed its version of the Water Resources Development Act – which included Senator Alexander’s plan to replace Chickamauga Lock and his permanent ban on the Corps’ plans to restrict fishing by placing physical barriers below 10 dams on the Cumberland – in May. Following negotiations between the House and Senate on its versions of the Water Resources Development Act, the legislation will be set to become law.

On Chickamauga Lock:

The House’s version of the Water Resources Development Act, passed Thursday, includes a plan to replace Chickamauga Lock that is similar to the Senator Alexander plan passed by the U.S. Senate in May.  Senator Alexander’s legislation would prioritize funding for Chickamauga Lock, which is composed of aging and severely deteriorating concrete, in two ways. One provision would completely remove the requirement that Inland Waterways Trust Fund money go toward Olmsted Lock, an Ohio River project that Senator Alexander said has “soaked up almost all the available money” for such projects. A second provision would restate a capital development plan that outlines priorities for the fund.

The House version would partially remove Olmsted Lock from the Inland Waterways Trust Fund. Currently, Olmsted receives half of its money from the fund, and half from federal taxpayers – the House bill would change that to only 25 percent of funding coming from the Inland Waterways Trust Fund. 

Senator Alexander said: “I look forward to working with the House on an agreement to replace Chickamauga Lock and ensure that 6.7 million tons of cargo can move through the lock and benefit commerce in Chattanooga and all of East Tennessee.”

On U.S. Army Corps of Engineers fishing restrictions:

The House’s version of the Water Resources Development Act also includes Senator Alexander’s legislation to permanently prohibit the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from using physical barriers to restrict access to fishing areas below 10 dams on the Cumberland River in Tennessee and Kentucky. It would also delegate enforcement below the dams to state wildlife agencies, and require the Corps to re-evaluate its plans.

Senator Alexander said: “We don’t need Big Brother holding the hands of fishermen in Tennessee and Kentucky. This legislation will permanently stop the Corps from pursuing some of its most unreasonable restrictions that would waste taxpayer dollars and keep fishermen from enjoying fishing areas that draw visitors from all over the country.”

The U.S. Congress has previously passed, and the president signed into law, Senator Alexander’s two-year ban on the Corps’ fishing restrictions, which Senator Alexander said was necessary because the House had not yet taken up its version of the Water Resources Development Act. The Senate and House still must negotiate in conference over differences between its versions of the Water Resources Development Act in order for the legislation – including the plan to replace Chickamauga Lock and Alexander’s plan to limit the Corps’ fishing restrictions – to become law.


Bradley County Detectives Seek Information On Man Caught On Surveillance Video

Detectives are asking for the public’s assistance in identifying a man captured on surveillance footage. On March 25, patrol deputies responded to AirSystems Unlimited, which is a local business located at 5668 South Lee Highway, in reference to a vehicle burglary. It was discovered a cell phone and car battery were taken out of a company vehicle which was in the parking lot. ... (click for more)

Johnson City Man Added To TBI's Top 10 Most Wanted List; Charged With Rape Of Nursing Home Patient

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has a new addition to its ‘Top 10 Most Wanted’ list, Lorenzo Barr Kamanda. Kamanda, 36, is wanted by the Washington County Sheriff’s Office and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation for the aggravated rape of a patient at a nursing home in Gray. The incident occurred in October of last year while Kamanda was employed at the facility. ... (click for more)

Slaxxon Regret - And Response

Back in the seventies my three oldest brothers had a buddy named Steve Slack. “Slack” was a star soccer player at Baylor and he grew up on Lookout Mountain, which is where I grew up. He and Jimmy, Henry and Bill went to the University of Virginia where they were roommates in an old, beat up house that was painted pink. Naturally, the place became known as the “Pink Palace” but lest ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: This Library Comes Alive

I am pretty positive that I haven’t stepped foot in a library in the last 50 years. Between the ever-widening Internet, with all of its search engines and infinite resources, I have got about as much use for a library as I would if I read a book about a transgender person. I have neither the time or inclination. Be like trying to teach a pig to sing – the pig always get bored. ... (click for more)

Central's Parrott Throttles Ooltewah With 1-Hit Shutout

Ooltewah looked like it was still on spring break. Central was sharp, Brooke Parrott dazzling, Mikayla Gill swung the bat well and the Lady Pounders played like an unbeaten, once-tied ballclub. Parrott threw a one-hit shutout – the hit was a wind-blown pop on the infield – and Gill slapped a two-run double off Kayla Boseman to right-center field in the third inning and ... (click for more)

Notre Dame Thumps Bledsoe Co., 11-1

The Notre Dame baseball team was in a race of a different kind Monday evening and the Fighting Irish came out on top in all three categories. Facing the Bledsoe County Warriors at Notre Dame’s Hunter Field, the Irish beat the rain, they got finished before dark and most importantly, beat the Warriors 11-1 in five innings as they improved to 4-2 overall with the same record in ... (click for more)