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Public Statements

Recognizing the Vital Impact of Outdoor Recreation

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. ROSS. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize the vital impact of outdoor recreation on our economy and livelihood. Outdoor recreation and camping in the United States contribute significantly to our gross domestic product and Americans' physical and mental health. The great outdoors connect Americans to their natural heritage and bring families closer together. Significantly, outdoor recreation is the number one driver of economic activity on federal lands and contributes $673,000,000,000 to the U.S. economy, and supports 4,300,000 American jobs. Every dollar Congress invests in the National Park Service effectively returns $10 to the United States economy.

Our national parks, national forests, and public lands and waters conserve natural resources, inspire young people, offer unique moments for all to enjoy, and encourage conservation of our shared environment. Unfortunately, many public campgrounds on our public lands and waters today face backlogged maintenance, deteriorating infrastructure, and struggle to meet the needs of modern day visitors. The American-made recreation vehicle (RV) industry is a domestic job-creating and thriving industry that contributes over $50,000,000,000 to the United States economy and supports over 300,000 American jobs. We must improve and modernize our national parks, national forests, and public lands and waters to adequately facilitate outdoor enthusiast and RV visitors.

As a Co-Chair of the RV Caucus and an outdoor enthusiast, today I proudly introduced a House Resolution expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the national parks, national forests, and public lands and waters of the United States contribute greatly to the economic and physical well-being of Americans and can be further improved by public-private partnerships. I am committed to working on innovative solutions and partnerships to modernize and expand campgrounds, address infrastructure needs, eliminate backlogged maintenance, and provide safe camping opportunities and enjoyable recreational experiences for all visitors on federal lands for generations to come.

I urge my colleagues to support this resolution.

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