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The Pearl River Valley Water Supply District issued the following statement.

Reservoir to open Monday, April 20, 2020

Boating and fishing on Barnett Reservoir will resume on Monday, the Pearl River Valley Water Supply District confirmed after Governor Tate Reeves’ Friday morning press conference related to the Covid-19 pandemic.

In announcing a week extension of his “shelter-in-place” order, Reeves relaxed some parts of his original order that expires at 8 a.m. on Monday.

“Today, the Governor said he would allow lakes, including Barnett Reservoir, to reopen to boating and fishing on Monday morning,” said John Sigman, General Manager of PRVWSD, the state agency that operates Barnett Reservoir. “The change only includes boating and fishing and boat ramps, and does not allow the reopening of our parks and other day-use facilities. That includes sandbars.”

Social-distancing restrictions related to boating and fishing announced by the Governor will be in effect on Barnett. That includes maintaining at least 6-feet of space between people on boats, at boat ramps and bank fishing, and no gatherings. Boats will be allowed to carry no more than two people, or half of the maximum occupancy rating for each watercraft.

Due to shelter-in-place restrictions, no tournament fishing of any type will be allowed on Barnett Reservoir until further notice.

Sigman said Lakeshore Park, Old Trace Park, Lowhead Dam Fishing Area and Pelahatchie Shore Park will remain closed, as well as the dog parks and disc golf courses at Lakeshore and Old Trace parks. The Spillway Fishing Area will open Monday morning.

PRVWSD had good news for boaters on the lower lake and Pelahatchie Bay areas. “We are happy to announce that when the lake reopens Monday, boat traffic between the main lake and Pelahatchie Bay under the Northshore Causeway bridge will resume,” Sigman said. “Boaters will notice the new boom materials in place and new channel markers that will allow safe passage.”

Boat traffic at the bridge has been closed since Oct. 20, 2018 due to the outbreak of the invasive plant Giant Salvinia. The overlapping design of the boom allows for boat traffic while blocking the floating plant from escaping on wind or water current.


Ross Barnett Reservoir is an online news website covering Simpson and surrounding counties as well as the State of Mississippi.



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