ALEXANDRIA, Va., June 20, 2018 – In government, data counts. If you can’t measure it, your chances of getting legislative support are nil. That’s why Boat Owners Association of The United States (BoatUS) applauds recent congressional action to authorize $1.5 million in funding to continue to measure the economic impact of the outdoor recreation industry in the coming fiscal year.
“Without this data, the outdoor recreation industry which includes recreational boating, won’t get the legislative support it deserves as a powerful economic engine. For recreational boaters, this can help support funding for critical recreational boating access to waterways such as constructing and maintaining launch ramps, improving navigation aids and fishing habitats, and backing other measures important to boating,” said BoatUS Manager of Government Affairs David Kennedy. “We thank the Senate Appropriations Committee for including funding for the Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) Outdoor Recreation Satellite Account in its fiscal year 2019 markup.” The committee’s action paves the way for action at the full committee level.
In February of this year, for the first-time ever, BEA completed a study that found the outdoor recreation industry’s 2016 annual gross output was 2 percent ($373.7 billion) of the U.S. gross domestic product. Boating and fishing activities totaled $38.2 billion, an increase of 4 percent over 2015. The BEA report also noted that the outdoor recreation industry, which includes boating, fishing, RVing, hunting, camping, hiking, bicycling and supporting activities, surpassed the U.S. agriculture and petroleum industries.
Also applauding the Senate Appropriations Committee’s effort was the Outdoor Recreation Roundtable (ORR), a coalition of America’s leading outdoor recreation trade associations including BoatUS that work to promote the policy and legislative reforms needed to grow the outdoor recreation economy.