KETTLE FALLS, Wash. --- The operator of Kettle Falls Marina accepted a one-year contract extension from the National Park Service.
Lake Roosevelt Vacations, Inc. has held a contract with NPS for the past 10 years, but it was scheduled to expire on April 30. The company had entered a bid with NPS to continue operating at the lake earlier this year – the only company to bid, according to Lake Roosevelt Vacations – but was not awarded the contract.
Denise Bausch, from NPS, said an independent survey found they had no viable options for a concessioner at the site.
“For a concession to offer there has to be a reasonable expectation for a concessioner to make a profit,” she said. “We’re looking at a variety of options.”
Bausch said she could not disclose what the survey said specifically.
Ed Wimberly, from Lake Roosevelt Vacations, Inc., said they accepted the one-year extension after public outcry over the unexpected closure.
“Oh we have tremendous support,” said Wimberly. “They didn’t give us any notice and they didn’t give the public any warning.”
The public outcry also included Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, who penned a letter asking NPS to reconsider.
The contract expiration would have resulted in the closure of boat slip rentals, houseboat rentals, fuel sales and a small store at the marina.
Wimberly said they accepted the extension “kind-of reluctantly.”
“We’re still in negotiation with them,” he said. “We just put off the misery for 12 months.”
“The whole point of offering the extension was to…reduce the impact on the visitors for this coming recreation season,” explained Bausch. “It provides us with a little bit more time to determine what the new perspective should look like.”
Wimberly said Lake Roosevelt Vacations, Inc. would begin taking reservations for 2018 starting May 1.