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#3177764 - 02/27/13 08:34 AM Freedom to Fish Act (Response to Dam closings)
jakeway
TnDeer Old Timer
10 Point


Registered: 11/22/99
Posts: 3578
Loc: Hendersonville, TN, USA

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Wed, February 27, 2013 8:33:57 AMCongressman Ed Whitfield files bill in U.S. House to stop restrictions at Dams!
From: Wade White <mail@change.org>


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Everyone! We have a bill we can support! If passed - it will stop the Corps from barricading our dams and stop it from taking place anywhere else in the Country which is the Corps plan based upon recent quotes from them that this is a national policy to now barricade Dams.

Its time to contact your two U.S. Senators and your U. S. Congressman/woman in the area you live and ask them to support the "Freedom to Fish Act". If anyone needs more information send me an email with the email contact information and we will get it to them asap! Share this email with others and on facebook. We need the support of Sportsmen/women all over America.

Thanks Wade White, Lyon County Judge Executive

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 26, 2013

WHITFIELD INTRODUCES ‘FREEDOM TO FISH ACT’

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Ed Whitfield, (KY-01), Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Energy and Power, today announced that he has formally introduced legislation to prevent the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) from installing permanent blockades along the Cumberland River. This measure, known as the Freedom to Fish Act, enables boating access to river tailwaters to continue for sportsmen and recreational fishermen.

“I am fed up with the Corps’ lack of public consideration in their process to prohibit access to tailwaters near dams on the Cumberland River,” stated Whitfield. “I’m also frustrated that the Corps in numerous meetings at all levels has placated the public rather than attempting to work with us to reach a compromise. This has left me with no other choice than to seek a legislative solution to the Corps’ overreach.”

On December 5, 2012, the USACE, Nashville District re-evaluated its operations for Restricted Areas for Hazardous Waters at dams, which were originally implemented on November 29, 1996. Despite the current practice to allow fishing in the tailwaters since 1996, the Corps recently came up with a new interpretation of their regulations and determined that they needed to permanently restrict access to the tailwaters. Therefore, the Nashville District changed its Operational Management Plans at the following locations: Barkley, Wolf Creek, Laurel and Martins Fork dams in Kentucky, and Cheatham, K. Percry Priest, Old Hickory, Cordell Hull, Center Hill and Dale Hollow in Tennessee, to come in compliance with their new interpretation.

As a result of the new interpretation, the USACE, Nashville District announced they plan to establish a 24-hour permanent restriction prohibiting all waterborne access to waters immediately upstream and downstream of all dams. Installation of signs, buoys and physical barriers at projects will occur by April 2013. Once these control measures are in place, the Corps will maintain a presence that will prohibit waterborne entry and activities within the restricted area boundaries.

Since learning of the Corps of Engineers Nashville District’s decision to fully enforce restricted boating access along the dams, Whitfield has tried seeking alternative solutions to permanent blockades.

Below is a timeline of Whitfield’s work on this issue.

December 20, 2012: Rep. Whitfield participates in a conference call with County Judges White and Lasher, and Lt. Colonel DeLapp, Commander of the Nashville district of the USACE. On the call, Whitfield requests that Lt. Colonel DeLapp consider all options to increase public safety. He also requests that the Corps allow public input before the barriers are constructed.

December 21, 2012: Rep. Whitfield sends a letter to Lt. General Thomas Bostick, Commanding General and Chief of Engineers for the USACE. In the letter, Whitfield relays Judges White and Lasher’s concerns regarding permanent barriers.

January 10, 2013: Rep. Whitfield attends a public meeting with nearly 200 other people hosted by USACE in Grand Rivers to seek public input regarding the proposed barriers.

February 5, 2013: Rep. Whitfield meets with Major General Michael Walsh to further discuss restrictions and to urge USACE to re-examine the decision to permanently restrict boating access to the tailwaters. Also attending the meeting are United States Senator Lamar Alexander and Congressman Jim Cooper. During this meeting, the County Judges and Rep. Whitfield offer a compromise to restrict the tailwater zone only at times when the dam is operating.

February 15, 2013: Rep. Whitfield publicly demands that the USACE come up with an alternative to a permanent blockade along Cumberland River dams. He also releases a discussion draft of a bill that would require an environmental assessment study prior to taking any action to establish permanent blockades.

February 26, 2013: Realizing that the USACE is unwilling to settle for a reasonable alternative, Whitfield introduces legislation preventing the installment of permanent blockades.

For more information, visit whitfield.house.gov.
The bill is below:

113TH CONGRESS
1ST SESSION H. R. ll
To prohibit the Corps of Engineers from taking any action to establish
a restricted area prohibiting public access to waters downstream of a
dam, and for other purposes.
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
Mr. WHITFIELD introduced the following bill; which was referred to the
Committee
A BILL
To prohibit the Corps of Engineers from taking any action
to establish a restricted area prohibiting public access
to waters downstream of a dam, and for other purposes.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
This Act may be cited as the ‘‘Freedom to Fish Act of 2013’’.
SEC. 2. RESTRICTED AREAS AT CORPS OF ENGINEERS DAMS.
3 (a) IN GENERAL.—The Secretary of the Army, acting
4 through the Chief of Engineers, shall not take any action
5 to establish a restricted area prohibiting public access to
6 waters downstream of a dam owned by the Corps of Engi7
neers.
8 (b) EFFECTIVE DATE.—
9 (1) IN GENERAL.—Subject to paragraph (2),
10 this section shall apply to an action described in sub11
section (a) on or after August 1, 2012.
12 (2) EXISTING RESTRICTIONS.—If the Secretary
13 of the Army, acting through the Chief of Engineers,
14 has taken an action described in subsection (a) dur15
ing the period beginning on August 1, 2012, and
16 ending on the date of enactment of this Act, the
17 Secretary shall—
18 (A) cease implementing the restricted area
19 resulting from the action; and
20 (B) remove any barriers constructed in
21 connection with the restricted area.

This message is from Wade White who started the petition "U.S. Army Corps of Engineers: Stop the Restriction of Access to Public Waterways ," which you signed on Change.org.

View the petition | View and reply to this message online

Unsubscribe from updates about this petition
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#3178150 - 02/27/13 02:06 PM Re: Freedom to Fish Act (Response to Dam closings) [Re: jakeway]
Wes Parrish
16 Point


Registered: 06/12/02
Posts: 19182
Loc: Knoxville-Dover-Union City, TN

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Encouraging news for a change.
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#3178281 - 02/27/13 04:00 PM Re: Freedom to Fish Act (Response to Dam closings) [Re: Wes Parrish]
RUGER Administrator
Mouse Killa
Non-Typical


Registered: 11/19/99
Posts: 4105131
Loc: TN

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Very cool. \:D
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#3178894 - 02/28/13 07:42 AM Re: Freedom to Fish Act (Response to Dam closings) [Re: RUGER]
Dbllunger
10 Point


Registered: 12/08/04
Posts: 4595
Loc: Middle Tennessee

content Online
Senator Alexander was supposed to introduce legislation yesterday but they adjourned for the day before he had a chance. Hopefully he will get his chance today. Good to know he and other politicians are on our side on this deal.
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#3178975 - 02/28/13 08:48 AM Re: Freedom to Fish Act (Response to Dam closings) [Re: Dbllunger]
imograss
4 Point


Registered: 01/19/06
Posts: 456
Loc: Lyles Tennessee

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hope it works
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#3178994 - 02/28/13 09:04 AM Re: Freedom to Fish Act (Response to Dam closings) [Re: imograss]
Football Hunter
Non-Typical


Registered: 10/22/07
Posts: 25460
Loc: Wilson Co/Perry Co

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 Originally Posted By: imograss
hope it works
yep
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You wont know,if you dont go!


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#3184532 - 03/05/13 05:49 PM Re: Freedom to Fish Act (Response to Dam closings) [Re: Football Hunter]
smstone22
16 Point


Registered: 01/11/04
Posts: 16888
Loc: Allardt, TN

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If they are going to do that, which is great if they do, then they need to add to it to say that when a fisherman drowns below a dam, his/her family gets zero dollars for it from the federal government.
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#3184742 - 03/05/13 08:33 PM Re: Freedom to Fish Act (Response to Dam closings) [Re: smstone22]
mike243
16 Point


Registered: 09/06/06
Posts: 11613
Loc: east tn

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Steven are you saying they have been paying the familys that had somebody drown?
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