WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Rand Paul’s amendment to S. 2848, the Water Resources Development Act, to protect Kentuckians that rely on Lake Cumberland as a water source from paying user fees passed the U.S. Senate. S. 2848 went on to pass by a vote of 95 to 3.
For two years after becoming law, Dr. Paul’s amendment would prevent the Army Corps of Engineers from charging eleven cities and businesses a one-time user fee, as well as an annual operation and maintenance fee, to access the water in Lake Cumberland. Currently, the Army Corps of Engineers is conducting a water reallocation study that would determine the fees.
“Taking action on behalf of Kentuckians is one of my most important responsibilities in the Senate, so I am pleased that these actions have yielded a positive result for Lake Cumberland’s surrounding communities that would help protect families from paying higher water bills and prevent government from further hindering our employers’ competitiveness,” said Dr. Paul. “I know how important this issue is for the affected communities, so I will continue working in Congress and with local officials to shield them from these charges.”
“I would like to thank Senator Paul and his staff for working with Somerset and our region to pass legislation addressing our concerns,” said Somerset Mayor Eddie Girdler.
Background information on the amendment is available below. Click HERE to read the text.
Amendment No. 5068
- This amendment blocks the Army Corps of Engineers from charging a fee for surplus water stored in Lake Cumberland. The Corps is in the process of studying Lake Cumberland/Wolf Creek Dam to determine how much cities and industries will have to begin paying the Corps for using water from Lake Cumberland and for operation and maintenance of the reservoir. Until now, these cities and industries have not had to pay any such user fee.