The MIC reported that Congressmen Peter Welch of Vermont and John Curtis of Utah formally introduced the Recreational Trails Program Full Funding Act that would increase funding from $84 million to at least $250 million per year, dramatically helping construction and maintenance on public lands, much of the work being long overdue.
“H.R. 1864 has a group of one dozen bipartisan co-sponsors in the U.S. House of Representatives, from states coast to coast,” said Scott Schloegel, senior vice president at the MIC’s Government Relations Office. “Congressmen Welch and Curtis are true champions of recreational trails. This is another great step that the industry and enthusiasts should applaud, and we greatly appreciate the efforts of House legislators, their staff members, and the support of the OHV community. If passed, the RTP Full Funding Act would be the biggest increase in RTP funding since the program was established in the early 1990s.”
Work and improvements on the nation’s trails would certainly be welcome as off-highway powersports has grown, along with other types of outdoor recreation, during the pandemic. Even before the onset of COVID-19, the Bureau of Economic Analysis recorded solid growth for the economic impact of all various outside activities between 2018 and 2019. The previous combined figure was $778 billion and it expanded to $788 billion, representing 2.1 percent of U.S. gross domestic product. Motorcycle, ATV, and side-by-side activity accounted for more than $9 billion in total business.