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The Coalition for Recreational Trails has written letters to support funding local trail projects through the Recreational Trails Program in the economic-stimulus package to:
Text of the letters sent December 12, 2008:
The undersigned organizations urge you to support the incorporation of $300 million in funding for local trail projects through the Recreational Trails Program (RTP) in the economic-stimulus package now being readied for action in early 2009. This program is administered by the Federal Highway Administration but is unusual in its design and benefits. Additional funding for the RTP program represents an extraordinary opportunity. The funding distribution process is in place and proven, having successfully completed in excess of 10,000 projects across the nation over the past decade.
The distribution process involves state DOTs and natural resource agencies as well as in-place citizen advisory committees, and a network of organizations that will leverage available funding with cash and in-kind support. Quality, eligible projects exist now, and the backlog of these projects exceeds available, traditional funding under SAFETEA-LU by a ratio of at least 3:1. Experience shows that selected projects can be underway very quickly and that most are completed within a year. This funding would attack unemployment swiftly, and rely upon small businesses across the nation. In part, this is because the projects are typically under $50,000— even though the economic impact of these projects is often great because they improve access to public lands and waters and support both local tourism and recreation businesses, as well as healthy lifestyles. In addition, most of these projects are already included in planning that meets NEPA and other requirements.
We believe that your actions to boost RTP-funded projects will achieve both immediate economic stimulation and strategic investments that will help transform American communities and lifestyles for long-term success, including energy efficiency and improved health.
The letters are signed on behalf of the following trail and recreation organizations:
Adventure Cycling Association*
* Added to list of signatories after 12/12/08
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Updated February 23, 2009
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