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WRPA's Equity, Inclusion & Belonging Committee

Q&A with Chair Shanyanika McElroy

What is the Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging Committee?

The WRPA Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (EIB) Committee was formed to support WRPA’s capacity to uphold equity as a core value and support the work change agents throughout the professional community. It builds on the legacy of WRPA’s Cultural Competency Committee formed 20 years ago.

Why is it the time right for this committee?

It has always been the right time for this work.

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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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“Hot-Off-The-Press” Good News From the Recreation & Conservation Funding Board (RCFB)

Funding for Key Programs!

A Message from Doug Levy, WRPA Lobbyist 

The RCFB voted unanimously to recommend a $140 million funding level for the Washington Wildlife & Recreation Program (WWRP); with only one dissenting vote to recommend $11.3 million for the Youth Athletic Facilities (YAF) program; and unanimously to recommend $9.1 million for the Aquatic Lands Enhancement Account (ALEA). These funding recommendations are in synch with what WRPA’s leadership pushed for in a letter signed by President, Paul Simmons, Executive Director, Tiffany Hanzo Martin, and Legislative Steering Committee Chair, Roxanne Miles

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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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A Message from NCSI: WRPA Affinity Partner

Returning Safely to Play

A Message from NCSI

As a valued NCSI Affinity Partner, we would like to share some new resources we’ve put together for you and your Washington Recreation and Park Association members. We know how important the programs that you run through WRPA are to the families across Washington. 


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Land & Water Conservation Fund

Senate Passes Major Conservation Package

A Message from Doug Levy, WRPA Lobbyist 

The legislation achieves two core conservation priorities. One is providing $900 million annually and permanently for the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which was created in 1964 and uses royalties from offshore oil and gas drilling to pay for a host of conservation projects on public lands.

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Phase 3 of the Governor’s “Safe Start” Re-Opening Plans

Phase 3: Examples of Inconsistencies of the "Safe Start" Re-Opening Plan

A Message from the WRPA Administration Network

As follow-up to the discussion we had at last Thursday's, June 11, 2020, meeting regarding Phase 3 of the Governor’s “Safe start” re-opening plans, and the limitation of 50 people on events and gatherings, the WRPA continues to work with the Governor’s Office on a way to look at these not just with a number but by ensuring safe protocols and social distancing and other structural ways of keeping people separated.

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IMPORTANT UPDATES: Act This Week!

 Protect Existing Resources and S. 3422 - Great American Outdoors Act

A Message from Doug Levy, WRPA Lobbyist 

Protect Existing Resources Template and Questions – Would LOVE Local Parks info/illustrations – See COB June 12 timeline

For this item, please review the Protecting Existing Resources Template and questions.  I’m chairing – for an Outdoor Recreation Funding Roundtable spearheaded by State Rep. Cindy Ryu (D-Shoreline/32nd Dist.) – a ‘Protect Existing Resources’ subcommittee that will assist Rep. Ryu and other participating legislators in understanding the magnitude of the COVID-19 impacts on the outdoor recreation sector, and hopefully provide these legislators with tools and data to protect against damaging cutbacks and reductions in 2020 Special Session and/or 2021 Regular Session deliberations on the state budgets.

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Outdoor Parks & Rec Guidance, 1% Property Tax, New 'Framework' on Gatherings, and Vashon Park District Bill

We Want Your Support

A Message from Doug Levy, WRPA Lobbyist 

Friday, May 29, 2020

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State Public Lands Managers to Reopen Campgrounds in 22 Counties

WA Residents Can Now Get Out and Camp

A Message from WA State Parks, WA Dept. of Fish & Wildlife, and WA Dept. Natural Resources

Olympia – May 29, 2020

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Tools for Centering Equity from NRPA

Make Equity-Based Planning Decisions and Inclusive Policies and Programs in Your Communities

A Message from Kristine Stratton, NRPA President & CEO

 

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Washington State Updates to Phase In Approach

Easing Religious Restrictions, More Counties Authorized to Apply for Phase 2, and Not All Counties Will Be in Phase 2 on June 1, 2020

A Message from Doug Levy, WRPA Lobbyist

Information regarding the Wednesday, May 27, 2020 Press Conference

  • Eased religious-gathering restrictions
  • Noted that two more counties were given authority to apply for Phase 2 – now up to 24 of 39
  • Noted that not all counties will get the okay on June 1, 2020 to proceed to Phase 2 – more details in days to come.

Religious Gathering Restrictions Eased

  • New additional guidance for both Phase I and Phase 2
    • In-person services for Phase 1 – Outdoor services on religious properties or adjacent to. Up to 100 – with appropriate face coverings and safety precautions;
    • In-Person services for Phase 2 – Outdoor services above + indoor services at 25% capacity or 50 individuals – whichever is less.  Also requires face coverings
  • Those in Phase 2 can also do in-home counseling of 5 individuals or less
  • In each case, can do these services multiple times per day
  • The above includes all worship services, study services, weddings, and funerals.  No limits on #/day
  • One restriction on religious services = No choirs.
  • Encouraging (but not requiring – religious institutions to maintain a voluntary log of participants so that we can act quickly if someone does get infected or exposed
  • Says with the easing of these restrictions, religious institutions asked to use common sense and follow the science – 6-feet distance, sanitize frequently, educate employees, PPE
  • Had leaders of Muslim, Jewish, and Lutheran faith speak

Other Items to Note

  • 2 more counties allowed to apply to go to Phase 2 – Walla Walla and one other – now makes 24 of 39
  • Regarding what is allowed on June 1 – more details in days to come but not every county will be able to move to Phase 2 on that particular date
  • Asked about whether he still has confidence in the Employment Security Department Director and what about the people experiencing delays and still not getting checks?  Said people should be upset about a criminal conspiracy, been able to recover millions of $$ with law enforcement help.  Said he won’t sugar-coat the frustration with delays – these claims need to be adjudicated.  But pointed out that this is a historic event, something we have not had in a century, with claims going up by a factor of 10.
  • Asked about whether counties like King, Pierce, and Snohomish might be able to at some point decide for themselves to go forward – also asked if it is possible some counties might get to Phase 3 before others even get to Phase 2?  Said while counties can be more restrictive if they choose, on moving forward have to have some minimum standard.  Have knocked down fatalities a lot and a little reduction in ##s of infections – but can spring back if not careful
  • Asked about how he can dictate religious services when it’s a 1st Amendment right? Said there’s a clear constitutional authority to act and issue orders, guidance in times of emergency.

#RecreateResponsibly

Share on Your Social Media How to #RecreateResponsibly 

A Message from Mountain to Sound Greenway

During this public health crisis, spending time outdoors has become a lifeline for many Americans. Yet these unusual circumstances mean that all of us, from seasoned outdoor enthusiasts to families heading out to their local park for the first time, could use a little guidance. We hope you’ll join us in sharing the #RecreateResponsibly toolkit (English and Spanish) and message with your own audience.

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Outdoor Recreation, Phase 1 Clarifications and Phase 2 Requirements – Proclamation 20-25 and Proclamation 20-25.2

Phase 1 & 2: Recreation Clarification & Requirements

A Message from Governor Jay Inslee

This memorandum serves to make further clarifications for Outdoor Recreation, Phase 1, and sets forth additional Phase 2 criteria.  This memorandum is effective as of May 14, 2020. 

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RCO Grant Application Deadline is Fast Approaching

RCO Grant Applications Extended to June 1, 2020

A message from Marguerite Austin, Recreation and Conservation Grants Section

Applications for Recreation and Conservation Funding Board grants are due on Monday, June 1st, 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.

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Learn More About the Western States Pact

Western State Pact: Collective Recovery Plan

A Message from Peter Mayer, Metro Parks Tacoma

Good morning!  First of all, I hope this finds you healthy and rested.  I wanted to send a “shout out” of thanks and share a few developments.

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Scholarship Opportunity: Society of Outdoor Recreation Professionals

Enhance Your Agencies Recreational Assets or Programs

Society of Outdoor Recreation Professionals (SORP) has opened its next round of the Christopher K. Jarvi Scholarship to Advance Partnerships. This scholarship fund was created to help dedicated professionals explore ways to integrate more partnerships into their work to benefit and bring value to parks, public lands, and the communities that host them. The scholarships are meant for professionals focused on enhancing recreational assets or programs and should be focused on training that can enhance the partnership potential of the individual.

Chris Jarvi was active in leadership with prominent organizations working to support recreation and parks professionals. At his request, this scholarship was created to encourage parks and recreation professionals to continue to explore how partnering efforts can help them to achieve parks, recreation, and community goals. Scholarships range from $500-$1,500 and may be used over the 18 months following the award. Based upon the current COVID-19 situation, SORP recommends a primary focus for this round on:

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News Release: What Parks Are Opening?

Parks Announces Limited Opening For Day Use

Ocean Beach and Columbia River Gorge Parks Remain Closed

A Message from Washington State Parks

OLYMPIA – May 2, 2020

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ACTION NEEDED: A Message From NRPA

Greetings Special Park District Leaders,

I hope this email finds you healthy and well during this difficult time.  We have heard from many of you about the extraordinary work you are doing on behalf of your community.    We know that special park districts are in a difficult place with respect to the ability to receive funding while still facing the challenges that COVID-19 has brought. 

NRPA has drafted a memo that will provide you additional information about the federal response along with a letter that we plan to send to federal leaders on behalf of special park districts.  This letter asks for equitable treatment when funding is provided.   

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