ACTION ALERT: Contact your rep to support Recreational Trails Program
The Coalition for Recreational Trails (CRT) calls on all trail organizations and trail enthusiasts to take action immediately to continue and to expand the Recreational Trails Program (RTP), the national trails assistance program that aids all trail activities nationwide through use of federal non-highway recreational fuel taxes. A huge step occurred late last year when the Congress instructed the U.S. Department of Transportation to develop a timely estimate of the fuel tax generated through non-highway recreational activities in its FY2020 budget and included RTP reauthorization in key Senate legislation creating the next-gen surface transportation program. Now, action in the House of Representatives is underway and underscores the bipartisan and coast-to-coast support RTP enjoys in the Congress.
US Representatives Peter Welch (D-VT), John Curtis (R-UT), Angie Craig (D-MN), Annie Kuster (D-NH), Mike Simpson (R-ID) and Chris Stewart (R-UT) introduced the Recreational Trails Full Funding Act of 2020 (HR 5797) that will more than double funding for the RTP and make other important changes. HR 5797 will:
- require completion of the nonhighway recreational fuel use study at least every five years and reports to Congress on the results;
- increase RTP funding to $250 million annually – from $84 million currently – or to the new estimated amount from the mandated studies;
- establish new reporting standards for projects completed with RTP funds to provide increased transparency;
- simplify and increase funding of administration of RTP by FHWA; and
- re-establish the original formula for apportionment of RTP funds to the states.