The RV industry and RVers across the country will benefit from improved campground experiences in the coming years thanks to a significant investment in outdoor recreation. Many of these news funds will be used to continue to modernize and expand camping opportunities within state parks to ensure RVers have a positive experience on our public lands.
During a presentation from the National Park Service (NPS) during the National Association of State Park Directors (NASPD) conference earlier this month, it was announced that more than $170 million in grants from the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) will be awarded to all 50 States for state-identified outdoor recreation and conservation projects. The states haven’t seen this level of funding in over 35 years.
LWCF funds are non-taxpayer dollars derived from Outer Continental Shelf lease revenues and are awarded through federal matching grants administered by the NPS. The RV Industry Association and the Outdoor Recreation Roundtable were key advocates in passing the John D. Dingell Jr. Conservation, Management, and Recreation Act, which permanently reauthorized LWCF. Previously, LWCF had to be reauthorized by Congress every 25 years, but the permanent reauthorization removes this requirement.
“We are pleased with the permanent authorization of the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which came as part of the John D. Dingell Jr. Conservation, Management and Recreation Act earlier this year,” said National Park Service acting Deputy Director for Operations David Vela during remarks at the National Association of State Park Directors conference. “Investing in high quality outdoor recreation space has proven to increase the public’s physical, cultural and spiritual well-being. We look forward to continuing our work with state and local partners in the implementation of this important program.”
Vela also emphasized to the crowd the importance of modernizing and expanding RV camping opportunities on state and federal lands to better accommodate the diverse RV industry.
Also in attendance at the NASPD Conference were Directors of Government Affairs, Chris Bornemann and Mike Ochs. The RV Industry Association has been a long-time partner of the NASPD conference and has used the conference as an opportunity to call for more investment in campground modernization and expansion projects in state parks across the country.
Many states have heeded the call and confirmed that they have or will be investing tens of millions of dollars into park campgrounds. The state government affairs team also discussed ways in which the RV industry can continue to partner with state parks to implement the NFPA 1194 RV parks and campground design standards, suppling additional RV-related amenities and expanding camping opportunities at their parks.
For more information, contact Chris Bornemann at [email protected].