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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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Our New Lobbyist Trevor Justin 

We are excited to welcome our new lobbyist, Trevor Justin! Trevor is thrilled to begin legislative representation for the WRPA. With his love for the
outdoors and staying active, working with WRPA is a natural fit for him. He is looking forward to positively impacting parks and recreation agencies statewide so that others can enjoy the outdoors as much as he does.

Trevor is a strategic government affair professional with a proven record of navigating the complex legislative environment with integrity and success. He is a pragmatic thinker with political savvy and helps deliver client objectives through budget and public policy processes.

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Doug Levy is Saying Goodbye

This is a tale about profound gratitude, mixed emotions, evolving toward new journeys, and excitement over what lies ahead. 

But the now comes before the later, so let’s start at the beginning: This memorandum is to let you all know, officially, that I will not be seeking
a renewal of my longstanding contract with WRPA that ends on Dec. 31, 2022.

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WRPA Award Nominations Are Now Open

WRPA Award Nominations Are Now Open – I am talking to All of YOU

Jennifer Papich, WRPA Past President 

Each year it saddens me when I see the extremely small numbers of nominations we have submitted for professional and spotlight awards because I know how fantastic you all are and I know the tremendous work we all do that deserves to be celebrated, recognized, and honored.

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Support Full Funding for Washington's Great Outdoors

Want to help preserve Washington's astounding natural beauty and unparalleled quality of life? Want to ensure ALL Washingtonians have equal access to the parks, trails, and wild areas that make this such a special place?

Well, here's your chance! Join us in requesting Full Funding for the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program (WWRP), the premier grant fund for protecting our state's natural spaces and creating recreational opportunities for all. This sign-on letter will go to the Governor and Legislature, demonstrating the public demand for outdoor recreation opportunities!

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