The U.S. Senate on Monday passed H.R. 4665, the Outdoor REC Act, which would instruct the Department of Commerce and federal land management agencies to provide statistics on how the outdoor industry, including bicycling, contributes to the U.S. economy. The legislation, which the House passed earlier this month, now goes to the President's desk.
"The federal government manages 28 percent of U.S. land and is the number one investor in bike lanes, paths and trails," said Tim Blumenthal, the president of PeopleForBikes. "The Outdoor REC Act will encourage the government to fully measure, recognize and enhance the economic benefits of bicycling to communities, businesses and our nation."
The Outdoor REC Act will guarantee that bicycle industry jobs and the economic impact of bicycling are accounted for as part of the gross domestic product (GDP). It will also ensure the outdoor industry's economic statistics be measured in the same way as other sectors, such as the automobile, pharmaceutical and agricultural industries.
"This bill was the focus of our September PeopleForBikes industry fly-in to Washington, D.C. and the statistics now generated through this Act will enable policymakers at all levels of government to make more informed decisions," said Amanda Covington, Vista Outdoor senior vice president for communications & government relations. "These meetings helped contribute to the outcome for the outdoor and bike industries, and it's great to have these groups collaborate in such a proactive way to support outdoor enthusiasts."
Original story from Bicycle Retailer and Industry News
Read about Pinkbike's visit to Congress
to lobby for the REC Act.