Source: The Imperial Valley Press
“The outdoor economy is an important sector of our local economy whether it be guided backpacking hikes through Joshua Tree National Park, horseback riding, mountain biking, rock climbing, or the multiple off-roading or ATV parks we have nearby,”
Assembly Bill 1918 would establish the Office of Sustainable Outdoor Recreation within the Natural Resources Agency.
If the bill is adopted, the new office will be tasked to plan and implement coordinated strategies to develop jobs and economic growth in the outdoor recreation industry, as well as to develop strategies concerning outdoor recreation amenities and experiences.
The bill was introduced in Sacramento on Thursday in the presence of a coalition of outdoor recreation industry leaders and advocates.
“The outdoor economy is an important sector of our local economy whether it be guided backpacking hikes through Joshua Tree National Park, horseback riding, mountain biking, rock climbing, or the multiple off-roading or ATV parks we have nearby,” stated Garcia. “A dedicated office promoting these outdoor pursuits would help our community better leverage its unique geographical attributes for optimal economic impact.”
Among the reasoning behind the bill, Garcia stated that despite California having the largest outdoor recreation economy in the country it doesn’t have an office dedicated to it, something eight others states already have in place.
“Outdoor recreation means business for California,” said Cailin O’Brien-Feeney, state, and local policy manager of the Outdoor Industry Association. “The impact of outdoor recreation on the state’s economy is larger here than in any other state, with more than $92 billion in consumer spending in the Golden State alone. Creating a new Office of Sustainable Outdoor Recreation recognizes the tremendous economic and workforce development contribution of outdoor recreation and the potential for growing its impact even more.”