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Take Our Survey: RCO Acquisition-Development Funds

RCO Acquisition-Development Funds

RCW 79A.15.050

RCO’s Outdoor Recreation Account is distributed according to RCW 79A.15.050.  We want to assess if there is interest by the WRPA membership to recommend changes to these allocations.  

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Outdoor recreation account—Distribution and use of moneys.

(2) Moneys appropriated beginning July 1, 2016, for this chapter to the outdoor recreation account shall be distributed in the following way:

(a) Not less than thirty percent to the state parks and recreation commission for the acquisition and development of state parks, with at least forty percent but no more than fifty percent of the money for acquisition costs;

(b) Not less than thirty percent for the acquisition, development, and renovation of local parks, with at least forty percent but no more than fifty percent of this money for acquisition costs;

(c) Not less than twenty percent for the acquisition, renovation, or development of trails;

(d) Not less than ten percent for the acquisition, renovation, or development of water access sites, with at least seventy-five percent of this money for acquisition costs; and

(e) Not less than ten percent or three million dollars, whichever is less, for development and renovation projects on state recreation lands. Any amount above three million dollars must be distributed for the purposes of (d) of this subsection.

(3)(a) In distributing these funds, the board retains discretion to meet the most pressing needs for state and local parks, trails, and water access sites, and is not required to meet the percentages described in subsections (1) and (2) of this section in any one biennium.

(b) If not enough project applications are submitted in a category within the outdoor recreation account to meet the percentages described in subsections (1) and (2) of this section in any biennium, the board retains discretion to distribute any remaining funds to the other categories within the account.

 (4) Only the state parks and recreation commission may apply for acquisition and development funds for state parks under subsections (1)(a) and (2)(a) of this section.

(5) Only local agencies may apply for acquisition, development, or renovation funds for local parks under subsections (1)(b) and (2)(b) of this section.

(6) Only state and local agencies may apply for funds for trails under subsections (1)(c) and (2)(c) of this section.

(7) Only state and local agencies may apply for funds for water access sites under subsections (1)(d) and (2)(d) of this section.

(8) Only the department of natural resources and the department of fish and wildlife may apply for funds for development and renovation projects on existing state recreation lands under subsections (1)(e) and (2)(e) of this section.

Note section (1) was removed and refers to the legislation prior to July 1, 2016. 

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New! Discover Pass Free Days 2022

Discover Pass free days honor Indigenous people, Black history, mental health

A News Release from Washington State Parks

OLYMPIA – Nov. 10, 2021 – Washington State Parks has designated the free days in 2022 when visitors will not need a Discover Pass to park at state parks and on recreation lands managed by the Washington Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).

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Call for 2021 Local Success Stories

Share Your Greatest Achievements from the Past Year

WRPA is bringing back the Success Story Program.

2021 has not quite been the year we were hoping for. However, WRPA is proud to see so many professionals from our industry are who still hard at work making this pandemic a little easier for our communities.

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RCO Needs Your Feedback About Recreation

RCO Needs Your Feedback About Recreation

Where Do You Recreate, What Gaps Are There, and Where Should State Money Be Invested?

A message from the Recreation and Conservation Office

You probably have heard that the state is looking for public comments about where they like to recreate, what gaps there are, and where they think the state should invest money in recreation. Below are links to the news release and social media about how we are collecting data / what it will be used for. Be sure to also take the survey.

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Auburn’s REC Teen Center Is Full of Energy this Fall

WRPA Agency Member Spotlight

Photo of kids preparing for a race outside Photo of kids doing crafts at a table Photo of a kid blowing bubbles with their mask down Photo of a kid playing about to shoot a basketball

Teens in Auburn, WA were excited to hang out, have fun, and play as Auburn’s REC Teen Center reopened in September after an 18-month closure due to pandemic restrictions.

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Fire Restrictions and Park Closures—Effective: August 12, 2021

Washington State Parks

Fire Restrictions and Park Closures—Effective August 12, 20201

Washington State Parks is working with the Washington State Department of Natural Resources to identify wildfire high-risk areas and taking steps to mitigate those risks while closely coordinating with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Governor’s Office on closure planning.

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Enumclaw to Open New Outdoor Fitness Feature

The Fitness Court® Opens August 11, All Welcome at Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

New, State-of-the-Art Facility Made Possible with Grant from the National Fitness Campaign

Outdoor fitness court featuring metal bars and rings, as well as concrete platforms of various heights

In 2020, the City of Enumclaw was awarded a $30,000 grant from the National Fitness Campaign (NFC) as part of its annual grant program in the 2020 Healthy Cities Campaign. Additional funding for the project was made possible by the City and local businesses, both financially and in-kind.

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Opinion Piece: Importance of Urban Park Land

Puget Sound Parks Should Be Protected and Preserved

Port Ludlow Resident Shares Opinion in Seattle Time Article

The following article, "Protect the legacy of our urban parks, a classic public good," was posted to the Seattle Times on July 22, 2021 and was written by Lee Springgate.

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Make a Difference in the Outdoors

Join a Volunteer Advisory Committee

Help improve and protect Washington's outdoors for years to come. Join a Recreation and Conservation Office advisory committee.

You can make a difference. 

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Keeping Youth Safe Playing the Sports They Love – BIAWA’s Connection to Parks & Recreation

Guest Post by the Brain Injury Alliance of Washington

By Suzette Hart, Marketing & Development Director, Brain Injury Alliance of Washington

Youth sports create a direct connection between the parks and recreation field and the work of the Brain Injury Alliance of Washington (BIAWA). WRPA members organize and administer sports leagues and/or coordinate with sports leagues that use public facilities. BIAWA fully embraces the importance of play, participation, and engagement in sports. That said, BIAWA also recognizes the possibility that injuries can and do occur during play.

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TREAD | Trails for All

TREAD

About T.R.E.A.D

Most of us love our Region’s outstanding systems. These trails provide exercise, escape, and enjoyment. We understand that it’s vital to take care of the system that has quickly become one of the most recognized assets of our community. And visitors are discovering and enjoying our trails, too.

TREAD is leading a project called TREAD Map. This comprehensive trail mapping app allows locals and visitors to plan the next outing, share experiences and conditions out on the trails or water, create connections with other trail enthusiasts and provide all the various land managers with a portal to create two-way communication with user groups and individuals.

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2021 Legislative Day Recap

In Partnership with the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Coalition: Advocating for All WA Recreation & Parks Professionals

A Message from Roxanne Miles, WRPA Legislative Committee Chair

Once again WRPA partnered with the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Coalition to host a Great Outdoors & Parks Legislative Day on February 4, 2021.

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The Results Are In!

Washington Parks and Recreation Statewide Survey

Executive Summary & Highlights

New study findings reveal that local park & recreation agencies provide an estimated 300,000 acres of park lands and support nearly 100 million users annually!

During the Fall of 2020, the Washington Recreation & Parks Association, Washington State Association of Counties, Association of Washington Cities, and Metro Parks Tacoma collaborated on a statewide survey to gather data on service demand and operational challenges facing local parks agencies, both preceding and as a result of COVID-19 through August 2020. The survey was the most comprehensive one of its kind to compile data on issues and challenges facing local parks and recreation agencies throughout the State of Washington.

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2020 Success Story: Pierce County Parks - Specialized Recreation

Specialized Recreation

A message from the Pierce County Parks

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2020 Success Story: Outdoors for All - Bikes to You

Adapting Outdoor Recreation

A Message from Ed Bronsdon, Executive Director, Outdoors for All Foundation

In a world turned upside down by the pandemic, many people are struggling to connect with others, get exercise, and find ways to increase their mental and physical fitness. The Outdoors for All Foundation is a Seattle Seahawks Spirit of 12 program charity that continues to help people with disabilities to adapt and enrich their lives despite the pandemic.

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2020 Success Story: Kirkland’s Treasured Past

Scavenger Hunt for Fun!

A message from the City of Kirkland

Recreation in Kirkland Parks and Community Services changed after April 1, 2020. We had to put the brakes on traditional programming and pivot to virtual programs and programs that provided social distancing. We excelled in providing physical recreation opportunities and were now challenged to find ways to connect with our community and to keep them engaged and active. 

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WWRC - Celebration of Community & Conservation

Washington Wildlife & Recreation Coalition’s (WWRC) Celebration of Community & Conservation

The celebration kicks off in TWO WEEKS. We are excited to celebrate with WRPA members again this year.   

As with all events and activities happening in 2020, WWRC is doing a few things differently this year.   In the past we have held an annual breakfast fundraising event which featured amazing speakers, inspiring award winners and statewide trail updates.   WRPA has always had a big presence at this event so we will want to get the word out so WRPA members can still participate in whatever way works best.   This year, from Monday, Sept 21 – Saturday, Sept 26, WRPA members can check the WWRC website here to watch daily videos and meet some amazing individuals dedicated to preserving Washington’s open space areas.    Also, instead of breakfast – a live interactive “happy hour” will be held - and you know that WRPA members love a happy hour!   The Virtual Happy Hour will be held Wednesday, September 23, from 5:00 – 6:00 p.m.  Online via Zoom (register in advance to receive access link)

WA State Wide Survey

We Need Your Support in Collecting Data for All of Washington State!

The focus of the survey is to gather data on service demand and operational challenges, both preceding and as a result of COVID-19. Since all agencies are different, the goal is not to compare or benchmark between agencies. The intent is to see the degree of change between increasing demand and declining resources that all park and recreation agencies have experienced. Please carefully review the instructions below before you begin the survey.  

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New Outdoor Recreation Sector Economic Analysis and Capital Funding Requests

drawing of capital building dome over the words legislative update and the WRPA logoWRPA Writes Letter in Support of Recreation Funding; Shares Updated Economic Analysis Report

A Message from Doug Levy, WRPA Lobbyist

At its August 12 meeting, the Recreation & Conservation Funding Board (RCFB) will be reviewing and listening to Recreation and Conservation Office (RCO) staff reports, correspondence from stakeholders, and “in-person” (virtual) testimony as it decides what funding level to recommend to the Governor’s Office for the 2021-23 Capital Budget funding levels for:
  • the Washington Wildlife & Recreation Program (WWRP)
  • the Youth Athletic Facilities (YAF) account
  • the Aquatic Lands Enhancement Account (ALEA)

WRPA submitted a letter to the RCFB, co-signed by President Paul Simmons, Executive Director Tiffany Hanzo, and Legislative Steering Committee Chair Roxanne Miles, where we second the WWRC’s request for $140M for WWRP and ask for full funding of the YAF ($11.3M) and ALEA ($9.1M) application lists. Both WRPA President Paul Simmons and WRPA Lobbyist Doug Levy will be virtual attendees at the August 12 RCFB Board Meeting and will speak to this further.

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Passage in US House Thursday, July 23, 2020 of the Great American Outdoors Act

Assuring $900 Million per year for Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF)

A Message from Doug Levy, WRPA Lobbyist 

A quick report on a pretty historic vote in the U.S. House on Thursday, July 23, 2020—including great news for the sustainable funding of the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). By an overwhelming 310 - 107 vote, the House approved S. 3422, known as the “Great American Outdoors Act.”  The legislation locks in a sustained $900 million per year funding level for LWCF, and additionally allocates $9.5 billion over the next five years to help address M&O backlogs on National parks and other federal lands.

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