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Lease Issues Remain For Jack's Boathouse

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Jack's Boathouse in Georgetown has been operating since 1945, renting out kayaks and other watercraft.
Andrew Bossi: http://www.flickr.com/photos/thisisbossi/4984070355/
Jack's Boathouse in Georgetown has been operating since 1945, renting out kayaks and other watercraft.

The popular kayak-rental business in D.C.'s Georgetown neighborhood will not be immediately evicted next month, after a planned changed by the National Park Service butted against public opinion.

The National Park Service says a Jack's Boathouse has been operating on a month-to-month lease that hasn't changed since 1982. Park Service spokeswoman Carol Johnson says the lease for Jack's Boathouse is also not in the name of the current owner. The business is owned and run by Paul Simkin, a friend and former business partner of Frank Baxter, who owned it until he died in 2009.

She says the park service wants to bring the business in line with other facilities in national parks around the country, operating on a concession contract which would glean the NPS a percentage of sales.

Johnson's comments are the first public statements from the park service since it sent boathouse owner Paul Simkin an eviction letter. A public outcry followed, and the park service put those plans on hold after getting hundreds of emails.

Jack's Boathouse has been open since 1945.

The park service still plans to solicit bids for a new concession contract to operate a boathouse in the space.


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