Wed Apr 10, 2019
Author: RV News Staff
New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham recently signed into law a bill adding her state to the list of states that have established an Office of Outdoor Recreation (OREC) responsible for helping to grow the outdoor recreation economy.
The newly created New Mexico Outdoor Recreation Division will reside in the Economic Development Department and will be led by a director appointed by Grisham. The legislation also creates several administrative and grant programs to support the division as it develops: The Outdoor Recreation Advisory Committee, the Special Projects and Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Fund and the Outdoor Equity Grant Program and Fund. The new law also adds funds for grant administration on the part of the New Mexico Youth Conservation Corps Commission.
RVIA and other members of the Outdoor Recreation Roundtable, have called for governors in all 50 states to establish an Office of Outdoor Recreation. As of April, there are five states across the U.S. (California, Nevada, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Minnesota) that still have active efforts to create OREC Offices progressing through their state legislatures in their current sessions.
RVIA says it continues to be supportive of these efforts to coordinate outdoor recreation policy and promote economic development among stakeholders in the outdoor recreation industry at the state level.
RVers are avid participators in many outdoor activities, including camping, hiking, biking, fishing, climbing, boating and snow sports. In 2018, the Bureau of Economic Analysis reported for the first time that outdoor recreation represents 2.2 percent of the total gross domestic product (GDP) and contributes $734 billion annually to the U.S. economy.
Also, during the period of 2012 to 2016, outdoor recreation grew faster than the U.S. economy overall. And in New Mexico, the RV industry has an economic impact of $133.2 million and supports more than 1,320 jobs and $54.5 million in wages.