Iowa's outdoor recreation budget cuts threaten the expansion of water and bike trails and other adventures.
Back Water Paddlers, Turkey River, Iowa, Cedar Rapids, Iowa Department of Natural Resources
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News Blip: Iowa's Outdoor Funding Debate
Iowa Ideas Reports On The Popularity Of Scenic Nature And Outdoor Adventure That Is Being Threatened By Steep Budget Cuts From The State
Editor's Note: This news item was retrieved through Iowa Idea's website via Google.
People are heavily invested in the outdoors in Iowa and and the natural outdoor resources available— such as paddling and bike trails. The interest has been as high as it’s been in recent memory, trail advocates in Iowa say, but the passion may be forced to a standstill. Steep budget cuts threaten the expansion of water trails, bike trails and other environmental and outdoor programs helping revitalize rural communities and lure adventure-minded young professionals to come to or stay in Iowa.
According to The Gazette Iowa Ideas writer B.A. Morelli, "a lobbying group for the Iowa outdoor industry calls outdoor recreation an $8.7 billion industry in Iowa. The economic report for the latest economy report by the Outdoor Industry Association claims the industry supports 83,000 direct jobs, $2.7 billion in salary and wages, and $649 million in state and local tax revenue in Iowa." So some are bewildered why taking away funds that produce this revenue would be an option. The recreational trail budget faces reductions to $1 million in fiscal year 2018, down from $2.5 to $5.5 million in recent years.
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