Matt Lasley | GC News-Gazette Kentucky State Officials, during a press conference on Monday at Rough River Dam State Resort Park, announced the investment of $3.7 million into updates at the park over the next two years. Pictured, from left, celebrating the announcement are Kentucky State Parks Commissioner Donnie Holland; state Reps. Suzanne Miles and Nancy Tate; Kentucky Tourism, Arts, and Heritage Cabinet Secretary Don Parkinson; and state Sen. Steve Meredith.

Matt Lasley | GC News-Gazette

Kentucky State Officials, during a press conference on Monday at Rough River Dam State Resort Park, announced the investment of $3.7 million into updates at the park over the next two years. Pictured, from left, celebrating the announcement are Kentucky State Parks Commissioner Donnie Holland; state Reps. Suzanne Miles and Nancy Tate; Kentucky Tourism, Arts, and Heritage Cabinet Secretary Don Parkinson; and state Sen. Steve Meredith.

State officials announced in a press conference Monday that $3.7 million will be invested in Rough River Dam State Resort Park over the next two years to fund improvements and upgrades to the park.

Kentucky State Parks Commissioner Donnie Holland said Monday that the state is looking to bring its parks back to where they used to be, as well as ensuring they remain for future generations, by providing additional funding for needed updates through the "Restoring the Finest" initiative.

Kentucky State Parks received $18 million and $20 million in extra funding as part of the “Refreshing the Finest” program between 2016-2018, and Gov. Matt Bevin and lawmakers approved a $50 million bond issue for the Restoring the Finest campaign in state parks during the 2019 General Assembly.

Of this, approximately $3.79 million has been reserved for use at Rough River Dam State Resort Park over the next two years.

Planned improvements to Rough River in the 2019-2020 fiscal year include reroofing the lodge and other exterior repairs; fire system/sprinkler repairs; hot water heater replacement; HVAC unit replacement; sewer line repairs; and a new oven for the lodge kitchen.

In the next fiscal year, Rough River is also expected to receive a new sewer and water system, as well as various life safety and hospitality and utility upgrades.

The timeline for these improvements is tentatively between 18 months to 2 years.

State Sen. Steve Meredith said the announcement of the Restoring the Finest funding for Rough River marks a great day for Kentucky and the park, as it is an integral part of Grayson, Breckinridge, and surrounding counties.

The funding came about, he said, as a result of a $200 million budget surplus, and he is proud the General Assembly invested in the state parks.

Additionally, Kentucky Tourism, Arts, and Heritage Cabinet Secretary Don Parkinson said the parks system looks to request $100 million more in funding to continue these improvements.

Charlie Corbett, president of the Friends of Rough River Lake, said his group is excited for Rough River to receive the funding.

"We are very proud and grateful for the Restoring The Finest $3.7 million funding," he said. "Rough River State Park is absolutely vital to the economic viability of this entire community."