Proclamations: June is Great Outdoors Month

More than half of the states have already proclaimed June 2019 Great Outdoors Month!  Since 2008, Governors from across the country have joined the President in proclaiming this month-long celebration of America’s great outdoors.  Click here for images and PDF versions of each proclamation.

How We Pay to Play: Funding Outdoor Recreation on Public Lands in the 21st Century

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The recreational demands of the 21st century are bringing new challenges for public land management. This PERC Public Lands Report examines some of the primary sources of funding for outdoor recreation-related opportunities on public lands, aiming to be informative rather than claiming to be exhaustive or comprehensive. It demonstrates that by many measures, inflation-adjusted recreation-related funding is stagnant or declining despite increased attention on and demand for outdoor recreation. 

As public lands that provide outdoor recreation opportunities grow in importance, it’s worthwhile to examine how we fund and maintain those lands. Adequate funding will not in and of itself guarantee responsible stewardship of our public recreation lands. But recent trends suggest that many sources of recreation funds have either stagnated or declined in real terms, even as visitation has been increasing over the long term. An assessment of recreation-related funding sources and their trends can provide insights about different funding strategies and, ideally, help inform and improve the future of recreation on public lands.

Job Opportunities – MN – Parks Management Positions

Minnesota’s State Parks and Trails management team is looking for a few good managers!  Our Division Leadership Team seats our regional managers on a level playing field with our section managers. Our big, beautiful system includes 75 state parks and recreation areas; 1,500 public water accesses; 25 state trails/35 water trails; and tens-of-thousands of miles of system and grant-in-aid snowmobile, cross-country ski and off-highway vehicle trails.  We are looking for managers who are innovators, creative problem solvers, skilled operational supervisors, and multi-culturally competent.

Please note that the closing date is June 26, and we are asking for 3, 300-word write-ups on key aspects of the regional manager positions. If you have any questions, please contact Deputy Director Phil Leversedge at phil.leversedge@state.mn.us.

Click here to go to the Minnesota careers website. Or, click on the position number below to go directly to a particular posting.

Parks & Trails Central Region Manager – 33077

Agency: Natural Resources Dept | Location: St. Paul | Job Family: Management Careers | Posted Date: 05/30/2019

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Parks & Trails Northwest Region Manager – 33179

Agency: Natural Resources Dept | Location: Bemidji | Job Family: Management Careers | Posted Date: 05/30/2019

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Parks & Trails Southern Region Manager – 33163

Agency: Natural Resources Dept | Location: New Ulm | Job Family: Management Careers | Posted Date: 05/30/2019

Assistant Regional Manager- State Prog Admin Manager – 33131

Agency: Natural Resources Dept | Location: St. Paul | Job Family: Management Careers | Posted Date: 05/30/2019

 

Trails Are Life … Arkansas State Parks

 

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“These trails mean life to me, physically and mentally,” hiker Jerry Brown says. We feel the same way. Yes, a lot of thought goes into building and maintaining trails but it’s really about how they breathe life back into you; that is the magic. And that’s our focus at Arkansas State Parks. #ARStateParks

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President to Sign LWCF Bill

Kellie Lunney, E&E News reporterPublished: Tuesday, March 12, 2019

President Trump’s fiscal 2020 budget recommends essentially zeroing out the beloved Land and Water Conservation Fund — a program that he will permanently reauthorize today in a much-anticipated White House signing ceremony for the broad public lands package.

The budget request would provide roughly $8 million in new funding to the federal portion of LWCF, but it also recommends a $31 million rescission from already appropriated funds.

That translates into a proposed clawback of about $23.45 million, which ultimately means a less-than-zero administration proposal for the 54-year-old land and water conservation program in fiscal 2020.

The omnibus spending bill that Trump signed into law last month gave LWCF $435 million for fiscal 2019.

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Job Opportunity – MI – Departmental Analyst, Recreation Trail Specialist

Job Description

Position is responsible for coordination of recreation trails programs such as Snowmobile, ORV, Rail Trails, Equestrian Trails, Pathways and other trail programs that are administered by Parks and Recreation Division. The person will coordinate the implementation and operation of these programs over large geographical area to include the entire Cadillac District and various adjacent counties. This position will work cooperatively with local units of government, user groups, as well as other agencies on PRD related trail issues. This position will need to have an understanding of GIS and other computer based programs and be able to handle several county land reviews as it relates to the impact on state designated trails.

More Details ..

 

VT – Stone Hut on Mt. Mansfield Set to Re-open December 1, 2016

OCT 19, 2016

Lottery, with some changes, to be held November 16th

Near the top of Mount Mansfield, reconstruction of the historic Stone Hut is nearing completion. Barring any last minute construction issues, the Hut will be open to overnight guests again starting December 1, 2016.

The hut was closed to visitors after a fire on Christmas Eve, 2015, destroyed most of the building.

Through the efforts of the Department of Forests, Parks & Recreation (FPR), and funding received through Vermont Parks Forever, the non-profit foundation supporting the parks, rebuilding the Stone Hut was fast-tracked so that visitors would be able to return this season.

“We are so grateful for the incredible outpouring of support,” said Michael Snyder, the commissioner of FPR. “Everywhere I went people would tell me about their special Stone Hut experiences. Then they would offer to help in any way they could, either by donating supplies or labor, or offering financial support. It was amazing – and a testament to its importance in peoples’ lives.”

Construction began on the new Stone Hut mid-summer and is expected to be completed by November 1. “The structure wasn’t a total loss. The original stones were salvaged and used in the new building. We worked closely with historic preservation and our architect to re-create the hut as close to the original as possible, while incorporating new upgrades to meet new code and safety standards,” said Susan Bulmer, Parks Regional Manager.

Reservations for the Stone Hut are assigned by lottery and reservation requests are being accepted now through November 14. There will be two rounds of lottery:  the first for only those individuals who had confirmed reservations for last season but were unable to use them due to the fire. After those have been processed, then the regular lottery will be held. New this year, is that there will no longer be preference given to those requesting the longest stays. All requests will be considered equally and selected at random. After the second-round lottery, any remaining nights can be reserved on a first-come/first-served basis via telephone.

More information about the Stone Hut, including detailed reservation procedures can be found at www.vtstateparks.com

NRPA – Americans Engagement with Parks Survey

 

The vast offerings of the local park and recreation agency improve the lives of people throughout our nation. From the fact that Americans on average visit their local park and recreation facilities approximately 29 times a year to the majority of Americans identifying parks and recreation as an important service provided by their local government, the general public is an untapped advocate to spread the public park and recreation story.

This annual study probes Americans’ usage of parks, the key reasons that drive their use and the greatest challenges preventing greater usage. Each year, the study probes the importance of public parks in Americans’ lives, including how parks compare to other services and offerings of local governments. The survey of 1,000 American adults looks at frequency and drivers of parks/recreation facilities visits and the barriers to that prevent greater enjoyment. Survey respondents also indicate the importance of park and recreation plays in their decisions at the voting booth and their level of support for greater funding.

Read the Report

Key Findings

  • Americans on average visit their local park and recreation facilities approximately 29 times a year, with 3 in 5 saying their most recent visit was within the past month.
  • Three in four Americans agree that the NRPA Three Pillars of Conservation, Health and Wellness, and Social Equity represent what they see as the priorities for their local park and recreation agency.
  • Nine in 10 Americans agree that parks and recreation are important services delivered by their local government.
  • Seven in 10 Americans say they are more likely to vote for local politicians who make park and recreation funding a priority.
  • Three-quarters of Americans support increased local government spending for park and recreation agencies with solid support for a nearly 30 percent increase in funding for local park and recreation agencies.

AL – Amendment 2 could introduce new era for AL State Park’s system

(Source: Alabama Department of Conservation)
(Source: Alabama Department of Conservation)
  • MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) –A vote on November’s ballot could change the Alabama State Park’s financial outlook for the foreseeable future.

    Amendment 2 would allow the state park system to keep the money it generates. This has not been the case in the past, as state lawmakers have transferred money out of the park system to shore up other issues in the state’s general fund.

    These transfers, coupled with last year’s budget cuts, helped lead to the closing of five state parks across the state. All five parks have since reopened thanks to deals with the local communities or a managing company.

    However, by keeping the money the parks generate, State Park Director Greg Lein says the state can “invest” in its parks instead of having to worry about their budget year-to-year.

    There is some concern the amendment could further limit the state’s flexibility when it comes to solving budget issues. Almost all revenue coming into the state is already earmarked to a certain program. These earmarks hurt Alabama’s ability to fund the growing costs of state agencies, such as Medicaid.