Local Policy: Three Is Better Than One
Pending legislation in three Western states could mean more offices of outdoor recreation. And that means more support for our industry across the region and in Washington D.C.
Last week, three Western states—California, New Mexico and Oregon—progressed legislation that supports creating offices of outdoor recreation. Outdoor Industry Association has been pressing for more state–level leadership on behalf of the outdoor recreation industry, and these bills mark the most significant progress toward that goal since Colorado and Washington created offices of outdoor recreation last year.
California: OIA members Marmot, Tahoe Mountain Sports, Brooks Range and HydraPak joined industry colleagues from PeopleForBikes and Fox Head, Inc., for a day of advocacy in Sacramento (see photo above). They were there to support AB 907, which would create an office of outdoor recreation. As the legislative session goes on, we will continue to organize members in California around the idea of an office of outdoor recreation as well as the $3 million parks bond legislation that you can read about here.
New Mexico: House Memorial 91 directs the state’s tourism and economic development departments to study the potential for growing and targeting the outdoor recreation industry and for establishing an office specifically tasked with that mission. The bill has made it through committee, and if passed would provide outdoor businesses and other stakeholders the opportunity to be consulted in the development of the study.
Oregon: In Oregon last week, HB 3350 was introduced. It would create an office of outdoor recreation in the state’s parks department. The mission of this office is to coordinate outdoor recreation policy and management, to promote outdoor recreation in concert with tourism, and to serve as a hub for policy and data resources. The bill would also create an outdoor recreation trust fund to finance this work.
Stay tuned for more on all these bills, and please reach out if you want to be more directly involved.