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2024 WRPA Awards Recipients

Congratulations, 2024 Award Recipients!

This spring, we want to honor the amazing people, parks, and programs that received an award at the awards ceremony during the 76th Annual WRPA Conference. The WRPA Awards Program honors individuals and organizations for their contributions to the field of recreation and parks in Washington State. A variety of awards were handed out to WRPA members and public citizens. 

There are three categories recognized for WRPA's Awards Program: Professional AwardsCitation of Merit Awards, and Spotlight Awards. In addition to these categories, WRPA also acknowledges Mickey Corso Leadership Grant recipients.

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2024 Washington State Elections Update

The 2024 election in Washington state will be the most significant election year in more than a decade. At the top of the state ballot, we’ll have four open seats for statewide office (meaning an incumbent won’t seek reelection), including an open seat Governor’s race for the first time in 12 years. We will also have open seat races for the Attorney General, Commissioner of Public Lands, and Insurance Commissioner seats. On top of that, several lawmakers are retiring from office (including two congressional retirements), which all contribute to an eventful election season that will result in new political leadership and a drastically different legislature in 2025.
As a refresher, the state contains 49 legislative districts represented by one state Senator and two state Representatives each (49 Senators and 98 Representatives). State Representatives must run for election every two years, while state Senators seek election every four years. The current makeup of the legislature is:

  • House: 58 Democrats | 40 Republicans
  • Senate: 29 Democrats | 20 Republicans

It’s important to note that Washington state utilizes a top two primary, meaning that the two candidates receiving the most votes will advance through the primary election to the general election, regardless of party preference. It is not uncommon in some legislative districts to have two candidates from the same party running against each other for a seat.

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2024 Election Results

Welcoming New WRPA Board Members

Each year, we welcome new members to the WRPA Board of Directors at the Annual Conference & Tradeshow. The Board of Directors is the governing body of our association and is responsible for the supervision, control, and direction of WRPA. These Board members are elected by you, the members, during an annual election.

The following WRPA members have been elected to join the board:

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Grant Application Deadline is Fast Approaching

Applications for Recreation and Conservation Funding Board grants are due on Wednesday, May 1, 2024, by 11:59 p.m. If you have started an application, or are thinking of applying, for a grant for your recreation or conservation project – there’s not much time left.

During this first grant round, the Recreation and Conservation Office (RCO) is accepting grant proposals for the following programs:

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House Environment & Energy: Agenda Update

We’re back at it with legislative session as the legislature officially convened Monday the 8th for a 60-day session. They’re hitting the ground running with public hearings on relevant bills. As you’ll see highlighted below, HB 2051 has been scheduled for a hearing on January 11 which relates to small off-road engines (like maintenance and landscaping equipment).

See bill language here: https://lawfilesext.leg.wa.gov/biennium/2023-24/Pdf/Bills/House%20Bills/2051.pdf?q=20240109122002

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PlayCleanGo® Boot Brush Stations Giveaway

Benjamin Franklin once famously said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” When it comes to protecting valuable habitat, Benjamin Franklin’s words take on a whole new meaning. The Washington Invasive Species Council has received funding to help protect the shrub-steppe from noxious weed spread and development. With support from the United States Forest Service, we are giving away 50 PlayCleanGo® Boot Brush Stations with custom signage to install around Washington’s shrub steppe. We hope your organization is interested in helping our mission to preserve this critical habitat by receiving and installing a free boot brush station. Below is a link to a form to express interest in a boot brush station. Receiving organizations will be responsible for installation, which is not difficult. A concise guide with pictures can be found here.

Link to one-page interest form: https://survey123.arcgis.com/share/14fdb57db76c443ebaf2657509ecf2f0?portalUrl=https://wa-rco.maps.arcgis.com

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Outdoor Recreation Legacy Partnership Program

The Recreation and Conservation Office (RCO) is accepting grant applications for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), Outdoor Recreation Legacy Partnership Program. This program, administered by the National Park Service, provides grants to acquire or develop land for public outdoor recreation purposes. An eligible project site must be located within:

  1. An incorporated city or town or unincorporated area having a population of 30,000 or more (2020 Census). The Census Bureau has published a list of urban areas and maps delineating each urbanized area, which can be found at: 

    U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts: United States

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Coalition To Update the Outdated Property Tax Cap

A broad coalition of leaders has come together to ask the Legislature to take this long overdue action in 2024 to revise the arbitrary 1% property tax cap that has been in place for more than a generation.

We ask for an update to the cap tying it to inflation and population growth factors with a new cap not to exceed 3%.

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What is the Playground Equipment for Sale?

Introduction

Play is an essential aspect of children's development. It positively impacts the physical and mental health of the children. Such activities also foster creativity, critical thinking, and social skills. Schools, parks, and communities must create a safe and engaging playground to provide all these benefits. In this blog, we will explore the different aspects of equipment suppliers and the benefits of investing in commercial playground equipment for sale.

Impact of Play on Child’s Development

Are you looking for some of the play's impacts on your child? It is a fact that sport has always benefited the kids. Playground equipment suppliers significantly add elements that contribute to the wellness of the kids.

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Life Floor - 4th Annual Make a Splash Grant Contest!

Through the Make a SPLASH! Grant Contest, Life Floor and Inside Edge Safety Surfaces are offering two grants this year for two splash pads at cities or non-profit organizations to receive an all-expenses-paid Life Floor safety surface + installation (valued at approximately $50-65k for a 2000 sq ft area). This is our 4th annual event offering grants to communities in need and I would love to extend the invitation to your eligible members to apply for these grants. Applications close on November 17th at 11:59PM CT.

The Grants are as follows:

  • The Need-Based Grant will be awarded to a splash pad at a city or non-profit facility with demonstrated financial need. The location of the splash pad must have a median household income below the state median and the Parks + Recreation 5-year average capital projects budget per capita must be below $50.
  • The Inclusive Design Grant will be awarded to a splash pad at a city or non-profit facility that has demonstrated a commitment to inclusivity or accessibility.
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Local Parks Maintenance Grants

Local Parks Maintenance Grants

Submit an Application by September 18

RCO is pleased to announce the availability of final policies and application dates for the Local Parks Maintenance (LPM) program, which offers grants of up to $100,000 for deferred maintenance at local parks. The funding guidelines and supporting materials can be found on the LPM web page

Comments Sought on New Grant Program for Community Athletic Fields

Comments Sought on New Grant Program for Community Athletic Fields

The Recreation and Conservation Office is working on a new grant program, the Community Outdoor Athletic Facilities (COAF) program. COAF will support the development and renovation of athletic facilities in communities that lack recreational opportunities, have underserved populations, and possess limited financial capacity.

Public Comment

The office is asking for your comments on a range of policy proposals for the new grant program. See the proposed policies and use this form to leave your comments. Comments will be accepted through September 12, 2023.

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2023 WRPA Awards Recipients

Congratulations, 2023 Award Recipients!

This spring, we want to honor the amazing people, parks, and programs that received an award at the awards ceremony during the 76th Annual WRPA Conference. The WRPA Awards Program honors individuals and organizations for their contributions to the field of recreation and parks in Washington State. A variety of awards were handed out to WRPA members and public citizens. 

There are three categories recognized for WRPA's Awards Program: Professional Awards, Citation of Merit Awards, and Spotlight Awards. In addition to these categories, WRPA also acknowledges Mickey Corso Leadership Grant recipients.

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USDA Forest Service - New Funding Opportunities

The USDA Forest Service awarded six million dollars to our program with funding from the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022. Eighty-percent of these dollars will go out as pass-through grants to disadvantaged communities, while the remaining 20% will go toward unmet needs within the program. Applicants will be eligible to receive a 100% match waiver as required by the federal government—that’s right, no match!

In addition, our program is receiving an additional six million dollars from the Washington State Legislature. These dollars are funded out of the new Climate Commitment Fund and must be spent in the ’23-’25 biennium which starts on July 1. It is very likely that some of these dollars will be available for grants to constituents outside of those disadvantaged communities, and some matching funds will be required. Pass-through grants funded by both state and federal dollars will be announced in the fall of 2023. Applications will likely be due in January, though final decisions on timelines, funding amounts, and match requirements among other details, have not yet been made. 

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Elevate Your Park with Kalispel Metal Products: Quality Picnic Tables, Benches, and Garbage Cans

As the warmer temperatures of spring arrive and parks become a hub of outdoor activities, providing your visitors with comfortable and long-lasting amenities is crucial. Kalispel Metal Products offers a wide range of items that make enjoying a day in the sunshine a walk in the park! We have picnic tables, benches, trail markers, garbage cans, and much more that are the perfect choice for enhancing any park or outdoor space.   

   

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2023 WRPA Election Results

Welcoming New WRPA Board Members

Each year, we welcome new members to the WRPA Board of Directors at the Annual Conference & Tradeshow. The Board of Directors is the governing body of our association and is responsible for the supervision, control, and direction of WRPA. These Board members are elected by you, the members, during an annual election.

The following WRPA members have been elected to join the board:

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AAPRA 2023 Extern Recruitment Announcement

The American Academy for Park & Recreation Administration Announces the 2023 Externship Program!

National Recreation & Park Association Annual Conference

The Academy’s Externship Program enables outstanding young professionals 35 years of age and younger in the parks and recreation field to interact with and learn from  American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration members, and other individuals who attend the NRPA Conference and its associated meetings. Up to four Externs are selected each year, two of which are Ernest T. Atwell diversity externs. Externs are paired with Academy members who serve as mentors during the NRPA Conference as well as past externs who serve as buddies and assist in making the most out of the experience.

Read Complete Extern Flier & Application

2023 AAPRA/NRPA Mentorship Program

A message from: National Recreation & Park Association (NRPA)

Sign Up for the Program
Register for the Webinar

2023 John C. Potts Leadership Development Scholarship

You are invited to apply for a John C. Potts "Pottsie" Leadership Development Scholarship to the 2023 NRPA Directors School! The American Parks & Recreation Foundation (APRF) is the philanthropic partner of the American Academy for Park & Recreation Administration.

Apply Now
Scholarship Requirements

 

$1.5 Billion Available through the 2023 RAISE Grant Program, Now Accepting Applications!

$1.5 Billion Available through the 2023 RAISE Grant Program, Now Accepting Applications!

 

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