Whitfield introduces bill to keep tailwaters open

Whitfield introduces bill to keep tailwaters open

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - U.S. Rep. Ed Whitfield has introduced a bill to keep the Army Corps of Engineers from blocking fishing waters near dams on the Cumberland River, a plan that has drawn outrage from anglers in Kentucky and Tennessee.

The Republican congressman from Kentucky's 1st District in western Kentucky met earlier with corps officials but said at the time he was prepared to file legislation if necessary.

Whitfield said Tuesday his Freedom to Fish Act would allow continued boating access to river tailwaters for sportsmen and recreational fishermen.

Corps officials have warned that boating too close to spillways at the dams is a safety risk. The corps said 14 people have died in the tailwaters below the dams on the Cumberland River since 1970, including three since 2009.

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