November 23, 2021

Reservoir Spillway fishing, recreation requires permit as of one week from today

Therese Apel

By December 1, you’re going to need a permit to fish, picnic or play at the Spillway on the Ross Barnett Reservoir.

Anyone ages 16 or over will need the permit, which officials say is to cut down on littering and vandalism.

“We hate it has come to this, but we have to create some feeling of accountability among other users to end this problem,” Reservoir Director John Sigman said in a release. “We’ve looked at it from every angle and have invited input from our users, but the litter situation has not improved, and this has to change. It’s not just an environmental problem but also a safety issue with so much litter on the rocks.”

The Reservoir will have a free daily registration system on both sides of the Pearl River below the dam. Users will obtain a permit form at one of the stations and fill out the registration card.

Each card has three parts: One goes on the dashboard of your car, one goes in a box at one of the permit stations, and the third part is carried by the user.

“From a safety standpoint, part of the information we’ll be gtting off the dashboard card is a cell phone number we can use to reach people in an emergency,” said Reservoir Police Chief Trevell Dixon. “There are times when people need to be notified that we are anticipating a rising river that will require the removal of vehicles from the parking lot on the northwest side.”

Violation of the permit rules will result in a $100 fine.

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