Author: Cassie Scott
The Outdoor Recreation Roundtable, a coalition of America’s leading outdoor recreation trade associations, launched several initiatives to help the outdoor recreation industry grow and prosper.
The ATA is one of 24 trade associations that create the ORR, which works to educate decision-makers on Capitol Hill about the importance of the outdoor recreation economy and ensure the nation’s public lands and waters remain accessible for outdoor enthusiasts.
The ATA is represented on three ORR committees: Matt Kormann, ATA’s CEO/president sits on the official committee; Dan Forster, ATA’s vice president and chief conservation officer, sits on the government relations committee; and Allison Jasper, ATA’s director of marketing and communications, sits on the communications committee.
“Working with ORR allows the archery industry to expand our influence dramatically,” Kormann said. “By cooperating and collaborating with organizations who are all fighting for the same cause – getting outside and experience the greatest resources on the planet – we’re accomplishing more than we can on our own.”
With combined energy and resources, ORR members hope to strengthen their efforts and make the outdoor industry a national priority for the Trump administration. Here are some current initiatives.
These statistics help the ORR, its roundtable members and their industry businesses fight for the administration’s support, funding and attention. Photo Credit: Outdoor Industry Association.
Outdoor Recreation’s Economic Impact
The ORR works to highlight the outdoor recreation’s economic impact. As a direct result of ORR’s efforts, The Bureau of Economic Analysis included the outdoor-recreation industry in its U.S. gross domestic product calculations for the first time in history. The BEA’s report, issued in February 2018, found that the outdoor-recreation sector makes up 2 percent of the U.S. GDP and accounts for $673 billion in annual gross domestic output. This impact exceeds that of crucial U.S. industries such as agriculture, computer manufacturing, and coal and petroleum.
Shortly after, Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-NM) and the Joint Economic Committee Democrats released a report, Investing in Rural America, which emphasizes the importance of outdoor recreation to the growth and economic health of rural America. The report concludes that 46 million rural residents – 14 percent of the total U.S. population – help the overall economy by starting new businesses and supplying many agricultural products. For further evidence, the Outdoor Industry Association found the outdoor recreation economy generates 7.6 million American jobs, $877 billion in consumer spending annually and $65.3 billion in federal tax revenue annually. View the OIA’s findings here.
These statistics help the ORR, its roundtable members and their industry businesses fight for the administration’s support, funding and attention.
Governments Hire Recreational Specialists
With ORR’s support and guidance, Ryan Zinke, secretary of the U.S. Interior Department, hired the nation’s first recreation czar in November. As a senior adviser to Secretary Zinke, Rick May – a lifelong bowhunter, five-time state champion archer, and former Navy Seal captain – is focused on promoting and improving outdoor recreational activities.
At the prodding of Zinke and May, many states, such as Utah, Colorado, Vermont, Montana and Washington, have jumped on the bandwagon to hire recreation czars to ensure the quality, dimension and sustainability of outdoor recreation in their state. The Interior Department believes outdoor recreation offices are critical liaisons with federal agencies and hopes to have recreation specialists advise governors in all 50 states.
The DOI is focused on increasing access to public lands and improving amenities, such as restrooms and boat launches, as well as services like wi-fi connections in remote areas. Photo Credit: Survival Life via Leslie Hale.
The DOI Commits to Infrastructure Improvements
The ORR encouraged the Department of the Interior to invest in the national infrastructure on public lands managed by the National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. That means improving roads, trails, campgrounds and other amenities – such as restrooms and boat launches – used by bowhunters and outdoor enthusiasts on refuges, hatcheries and forest service lands. The DOI is also focused on increasing access to public lands and improving wi-fi connections in remote areas.
ORR Launches New Website
The ORR unveiled a new website, www.RecreationRoundtable.org, in April to provide information about the industry’s economic impact and help inform the coalition’s membership about outdoor recreation news and efforts. The website ensures outdoor industry representatives have the information they need to promote outdoor recreation in America.
The ATA’s involvement in the ORR helps ATA members and the industry on a larger scale, while also ensuring archery and bowhunting remain relevant in high-level outdoor-recreation discussions. Visit the ORR website to stay updated on state and national efforts so you can engage and promote archery and bowhunting priorities.