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Some Lake Sonoma, Lake Mendocino facilities closed

The effects of last month's shutdown of the federal government continue to be felt locally, as the Army Corps of Engineers said it lacks the money to keep some visitor facilities open at Lake Mendocino and Lake Sonoma.

Spokesman J.D. Hardesty said the wording of the resolution that ended the 16-day shutdown on Oct. 16 did not release all of the money the Corps had been counting on. That shortage will not be corrected until Congress passes a new budget or a different short-term resolution when the current one runs out in January.

Most day-use facilities, such as picnic grounds, will remain open at the two lakes, and Lake Sonoma remains open for fishing and boating, although water levels at Lake Mendocino are too low to keep the boat ramps open. Most restrooms at both parks, however, remain closed, and the parks will be cutting back on litter removal and other maintenance, he said.

Campgrounds at the two lakes will be closed immediately, he said.

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