Corps to cut budget to build barricade

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Reporter - Lauren Adams
Photojournalist - Chad Darnall

LYON COUNTY, KY - On a Tuesday in March, Canal Campground is quiet, except for the hum of a leaf blower.  Crews are rushing to get the campground up and running in a matter of weeks.

Brandy Doom is volunteering.  She has brought her stepson to Canal Campground for years and says she takes pride in the park, "It's nice to know what you're doing will make somebody else's summer good."

The barricade project at Barkley Dam was slated to begin in February and wrap up in April.  No progress has yet to be reported.

But, this summer could be a little different. The cleaning Doom is doing could be it for awhile. The Army Corps of Engineers, who operates the campground, plans on saving $400,000 by reducing services at areas like this and holding off on repairs and hi rings.

"It worries me," Lyon County Judge Executive Wade White says of cutting the budgets of area parks and campgrounds to finance barricades.

 

White recently learned the $2.6 million project would be financed by a series of cuts in his county.

"The more we look at this and the more we see how it's going to impact us we've got to do everything we can to stop this."

Because, he says, the barricades will hurt fishermen and the bill will hurt the local economy.

"It may be opening a campground late, closing it early, not doing certain repairs, all these things are important to us because they attract tourists," White said.

"That's sad because that is what this place is- a tourist spot," Brandy Doom said.

A spokesman for the Army Corps of Engineers released a statement saying, "The Nashville District is re-prioritizing funding in order to comply with Corps regulations to restrict areas around dams on the Cumberland River. The Nashville District will make every effort to minimize impacts to operation and maintenance activities."

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