Officials discussing the future of Lake Fannin

By: Ethan Hutchins Email
By: Ethan Hutchins Email

FANNIN COUNTY,TX -- Local officials are discussing what to do with Lake Fannin.

"They're not really taking care of it, so we feel the right thing to do would be to convey it to Fannin County," said Fannin County Judge Spanky Carter.

Since last April, Lake Fannin has been closed to the public.

"They came up, they locked the gates, and you know we feel that's unacceptable," said Carter.

Fannin County Judge Spanky Carter says the 1,900 acre lake was built back in the 1930's for recreation and was owned by the city of Bonham.

But in 1980, ownership changed to the National Forrest Service and they closed the gates to the public.

Soon after, lodges, campsites and other amenities around the lake began to deteriorate.

"We're gonna go in there, we're gonna rehabilitate some of those buildings. There's just so many things we can use for Lake Fannin, " said Carter.

In 1998, the forest service reopened the lake to the public and volunteers began renovating the lake property.

But the agency closed it again last April, in an effort to preserve the historical site.

Now there's a growing movement to take back the lake and return it to it's former glory.

"There's a lot of work to be done, there's nothing we can do overnight, but we can't do anything until we get it under our control," said Carter.

Carter says he and Congressman Ralph Hall have been working closely on the issue in Washington.

"It's just sitting there and sitting there and sitting there. A lot of the buildings that I saw were workable and usable, but they're not anymore. It's kind of a shame," said Congressman Ralph Hall.

Hall says he hopes his proposal to transfer ownership back to the county will be passed into federal law.

"I want to introduce some legislation on it, but I want to give them every chance in the world to work out whatever satisfies all of them," said Hall.

The "Save Lake Fannin" fundraiser to raise money for the effort is set for June 21st at the Parker House in downtown Ivanhoe.

There will be live music, wine tasting and other festivities.


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