State and federal agencies are at odds as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers presses ahead with a ban on fishing from boats both above and below Cumberland River watershed dams.
The Corps office in Nashville announced Tuesday it was banning fishing close to the dams as a safety matter. The announcement also said the federal agency was asking Tennessee and Kentucky wildlife agencies to enforce the ban on waterborne fishing in restricted areas.
But Ed Carter, executive director of the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, was quick to say TWRA would not enforce the restriction. The agency’s officers enforce regulations on waterways in the state.
“If there is a lot of water pouring through the spill gates, we can understand restrictions on hazardous days,” Carter said. “Otherwise, our boating accident reports indicate anglers have a good safety record below dams and we do not see a rational reason to prevent them from fishing there.”
A call to the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Services was not immediately returned today.