P. O. Box 519
Granville WV 26534-0519

Wednesday 15 November 2000

Senator Robert C. Byrd
311 Senate Hart Office Building

Washington DC 20510


Dear Senator Byrd:

Thank you for your letter of 26 October, forwarding the traffic information for the Upper Mon locks, as provided to you on 24 October by COL Ridenour, District Engineer, Pittsburgh District, US Army Corps of Engineers (COE). I'm analyzing that information, and, other information for the Upper Mon locks that I've downloaded from COE websites. I will provide you and Representative Mollohan with the results of my analysis. Depending on how long I procrastinate on this chore, I should have my analysis done in 2-4 weeks.

I've also enclosed five copies of our "lock hours" Christmas "card" and 2001 calendar. I trust that you and your staff will find the card-calendar humorous and informative, re our "lock hours" issue! I can send you as many additional copies as you might desire. And, those on the "cc" list to this letter are also receiving five copies of the card-calendar.

I hope that the proposed National Recreation Lakes Act of 2000 will be revived for consideration when the new Congress convenes next January. The draft act addresses recreation concerns for lakes formed by dams built and operated by COE for flood control and river flow maintenance. With some minor "word-smithing," the purposes of this act could also apply to our nation's navigable rivers, and the COE locks and dams on these rivers. That is, the proposed act, with some revisions, could address the "lock hours" concerns held by our Upper Monongahela Committee for Better Boating.

I will attempt this "word-smithing" over the next few weeks. I'll then provide you and Representative Mollohan, and those on the "cc" list below, with my proposed revisions to the draft act. "Bottom line" is that I'll complete this chore, and, the Upper Mon lock data analysis chore, well in advance of the new Congress that convenes next January.

Our Upper Monongahela Committee for Better Boating has been flailing away at this "lock hours" issue since last February. A major worriment of ours has been how to lobby Congress on this issue. Fortunately, even us blind hogs find an acorn once in a while!! Thanks to Mike Harris at PONTOON AND DECK BOAT, us blind hogs found some acorns! "Acorn one" is the draft National Recreation Lakes Act. "Acorn two" is Mick Blackistone and the National Marine Manufacturers Association. "Acorn three" is the National Recreation Lakes Coalition. Our committee hopes to work with Mick and others in the coalition, so that our "lock hours" concerns can perhaps be folded into the draft National Recreation Lakes Act.

These issues of course are not currently "time-sensitive," as action on these issues awaits the new Congress. As for the moment, "us public," like Congress, have our attention focused on the post-election session of Congress, and, resolution of the controversy surrounding the presidential election.

Our committee thanks you and Congressman Mollohan for your interest and assistance on these recreational boating and fishing and related issues.




cc w/encl:

(1) Representative Mollohan.

(2) Representative Deal, author of proposed National Recreation Lakes legislation.

(3) Representative Wamp (Rep. Wamp's constituent, Jay Martin, has informed Strimbeck re recreational issues on Tennessee River, and, need to replace the Chickamauga lock).

(4) Representative Shuster (Rep. Shuster's constituent, Bill Frotscher, has contacted Rep. Shuster re our "lock hours" issue).

(5) Rep. Saxton, avid boater as per article about him in November 1998 BOAT/US Magazine.

(6) Mick Blackistone, National Marine Manufacturers Association, and, National Recreation Lakes Coalition.