Friday, October 3, 2003

Newport's submarine gets OK in defense bill


Backers must still raise up to $25M to get it

By Patrick Crowley
The Cincinnati Enquirer

NEWPORT - President Bush is helping Newport get its sub.

Bush has signed the Defense Appropriations bill. Buried in its provisions is one guaranteeing that the decommissioned USS Narwhal is reserved for donation to the National Submarine Science Discovery Center, a Northern Kentucky group working to bring the sub to the riverfront as part of a tourist and education attraction.

"This is a landmark day in Tristate history," said Tom Schram, center executive director. "Assuming we submit an acceptable application to the Navy, the Narwhal will be the first time in history that a former Navy nuclear submarine is donated, and it's coming to our region."

The application process will take about a year to complete, Schram said. The Discovery Center will be along the river and near Newport on the Levee. It is scheduled to open on Memorial Day 2007.

But backers must still raise as much as $25 million to build the center and bring the sub to Newport.

"We are tracking right on course," said Covington Schools Superintendent Jack Moreland, chairman of the Discovery Center's board of directors.

"The submarine donation is the critical component of this project, and we now have our sights set on success," Moreland said. "The next step is to get our fund-raising organization up and running so that we can take advantage of this historic opportunity for our region."

According to backers, the Discovery Center will draw 200,000 visitors annually and have an annual economic impact of $20 million or more. Thirty people will work at the center.

Two Northern Kentucky members of Congress - Sen. Jim Bunning, a Southgate Republican, and Boone County Democratic Rep. Ken Lucas - worked to secure the sub for Northern Kentucky.

Bunning was successful inserting the donation of the sub into the bill that Bush signed this week.

E-mail pcrowley@enquirer.com




TOP STORIES
Police shut down crime ring
For sale, dream house, $11.9M
Stadium deal got worse
Woman: Priest molested me, too
21 men join lawsuit against accused priest
Newport's submarine gets OK in defense bill
Lewis and Clark come alive at Kentucky's Big Bone Lick

IN THE TRISTATE
Fire safety fairs open this week
Police union can't withdraw
Ex-mayors: City on wrong path
Grant aims to curb smoking
On campus
Regional Report

ENQUIRER COLUMNISTS
Crowley: Race is on for N.Ky outdoor shopping complex
Downs: Small, quaint, relaxing place lures coffee aficionados
Howard: Good Things Happening

BUTLER, WARREN, CLERMONT
Antique car show is area classic
Fatal wreck results in jail
Wavy flag leads to lawsuit

OBITUARIES
Charles Hawley ran ink manufacturer
Ellen Thompson, 96, had deep Ohio roots
Kentucky Obituaries

OHIO
Fingerhut redefines 'underdog'
Cause of fatal silo blast could take days to find
Ohio Moments

KENTUCKY
Copter takes man to hospital after fall
Accused EMT trainee fired after visiting teen
The Enquirer wants to know what you think
Watergate reporter, TV host air views
Conner guilty of mail fraud
Pharmacy board opposes splitting pills to save dollars for Medicaid
Kentucky to do