January 2018 Print


Dennis Goemaat, Deputy Director
Linn County Board of Supervisors, Iowa

Brian Kennedy, Program Director
Metro Parks and Nature, Oregon


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Got an issue you need advice on? Or a best practice you want to share? Send us the details and we will publish it in the next NACPRO News.


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Metro Detroit Scores a New OHV Park, With Assist from NOHVCC Workshop
Courtesy of NOHVCC

By Dave Halsey

This is an off-highway vehicle (OHV) success story in progress. And a prime example of how local governments can use the many NOHVCC “tools” and resources to build an OHV Park in a large metropolitan area.

Oakland County, in southeast Michigan, is part of Metro Detroit, which has six counties and a population of over 4 million. As in many states, a large number of owners of OHVs live in Michigan’s major metropolitan area, and must drive 3 to 4 hours to get to the nearest, designated trail system on public lands. But that will change in the near future.

Oakland County is moving forward to create an OHV park that will provide a new riding opportunity for enthusiasts of ATVs, Side-by-Sides, motorcycles and full-sized vehicles, including rail-built rigs and dune buggies. And judging by a recent county meeting, where over 300 people showed up to support the project, they are very enthused enthusiasts.

“This area represents the core of OHV registrations statewide,” said Dan Stencil of the County Parks and Recreation Commission. “The population is largely in southeast Michigan. So this park will give enthusiasts the opportunity to spend a weekend or a week in the area. It’s located next to three major campgrounds, and it gives families an alternative to the long drive to northern Michigan.”

Read more: https://goo.gl/rW4H2J


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NACo Releases Legislative Priorities for 2018

By Zach George

On January 8, the National Association of Counties (NACo) announced the association’s top policy priorities for 2018. Each year, NACo’s Board of Directors – which is composed of elected county officials from across the country – works with the association’s ten policy steering committees to select legislative and regulatory issues most pressing to America’s county governments. In addition to preserving local decision making, protecting counties from unfunded mandates and local preemption and strengthening the federal-state-local partnership, NACo will focus on the following:

1. Promote county infrastructure priorities
2. Support the payment in lieu of taxes (PILT) and secure rural schools (SRS) programs
3. Support policies to promote mental health, substance abuse treatment and justice reform
4. Protect the federal-state-local partnership for Medicaid
5. Work towards a more effective definition of waters of the U.S.
6. Support county authority to collect existing sales tax
7. Support programs that assist counties to prevent and reduce poverty
8. Support a comprehensive long-term farm bill reauthorization

Read more: https://goo.gl/B3sGLg


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Top Trends in Parks and Recreation for 2018

By Richard J. Dolesh

Several years ago, what started as a lighthearted look at new, interesting and even controversial trends in the field of parks and recreation for the coming year, has now become an annual New Year tradition. Past top trends for Parks and Recreation of previous years have proven surprisingly prescient, coming true more than not. Will we hit the mark again? You be the judge.

Read more: https://goo.gl/dd8PVJ


Meet Me at the Park play spaces grants now available

For the second year, NRPA and The Walt Disney Co. are coming together to invest in innovative play spaces and promote healthy living with the goal to provide one million kids and families with greater access to play. Park and recreation agencies in all 50 states, including the District of Columbia and US territories, are invited to share their best ideas on increasing access to play spaces for children and families. Agencies with the most innovative and impactful project ideas will receive $30,000 grants to implement their projects. Applications are due March 1.

For more information: http://www.nrpa.org/disney


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Homelessness in Parks: A Summary of Key Findings from an NRPA Research Survey
Courtesy of GP RED

Park and recreation agencies provide the members of their community with opportunities for physical fitness, a connection with nature and essential out-of-school-time care for children. But, behind the scenes, park and recreation agencies across the country increasingly find themselves on the frontline of community outreach. Many agencies go above and beyond historic expectations to be leaders in public health, setting the standards in sustainability and being a partner in reducing crime. And in many communities, park and recreation agencies are part of their cities’ response to the delicate circumstances of homelessness.

In many communities, urban park and recreation agencies are finding themselves on the front lines of this issue because of the often heavy presence of homeless individuals on public parkland and in agency-run facilities. Matters surrounding homelessness are complex, with solutions that necessitate a holistic approach and collaboration between federal, state, and city agencies and nonprofit organizations.

The NRPA research team developed a 25-question survey to gain an understanding of the views and actions of park and recreation departments and other local government agencies toward the homeless population across the country. Sixty-five park and recreation agencies responded to the survey, the key findings from which are the basis of this report and were presented at the January 2017 NRPA Innovation Lab in Los Angeles.

Download the report: https://goo.gl/UERnho


Small Community Parks and Recreation Master Planning Resource Guide – 3rd Edition Now Available
Courtesy of GP RED

GP RED, in collaboration with Sagamore Publishing, has released a new edition of this popular master planning guide. Intended to serve a wide audience but specifically targeted to the needs of instructors, students, and small community practitioners, it is available in two versions. Version I is the full guide written for instructors wanting to fully understand and teach a comprehensive master planning process, and/or for agency leaders who may not have access to adequate funding to hire an effective third party firm to complete a thorough public process and master plan but still need a plan to help their agency set long-range goals and run effectively and efficiently.

The Version II Summary Guide is intended to provide an affordable step-by-step outline manual for students or individual professionals wanting to learn how to prepare a master plan for smaller park and recreation agencies. The guide is intended to offer university instructors and/or smaller community public agency leaders an affordable step-by-step blueprint of how to prepare a community-wide systems master plan for parks and recreation agencies.

The Full Guide includes 18 valuable appendix resources, such as questionnaires, matrices, invitation and inventory templates, and other sample documents to help fully implement a comprehensive planning process.

For more information: https://www.sagamorepub.com/


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What Abbey’s ‘Desert Solitaire’ means in these trying times
Courtesy of High Country News

By John Buckley

Fifty years ago, Edward Abbey’s Desert Solitaire was published to decent reviews but little fanfare. Yet it has remained in print for a half-century and created a devoted following. As President Donald Trump and Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke carved 2 million acres out of Bears Ears and Grand-Staircase-Escalante national monuments, both in the heart of “Abbey Country,” Desert Solitaire remains more relevant today than ever.

As Trump and Zinke reclaim for extractive industry much of the land that had been protected through the Antiquities Act by Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, Abbey’s spirit infuses the opposition.

But Abbey, who died in 1989, wouldn’t be surprised by Trump and Zinke’s attitudes. He’d instantly spot them as more of the know-nothing exploiters he’d always railed against.

Read more: https://goo.gl/ePV7nm


How to turn motorized rec into a sustainable economy
Courtesy of High Country News

By Andi Bourne and Seeley Swan Pathfinder

Mining and ranching is the main economy of Challis, Idaho. When the Thompson Creek Mining Company, a molybdenum mine west of Challis, ended their mining operations in 2014, the bust in the economy rattled the community.

Like many communities in the West, Challis is looking to tourism to help diversify and bolster their economy.

It wasn’t until 2010 when the local state and federal agencies created the Lombard Trail for ATV and side-by-side riders, that there was a direct connection for recreationists to Challis. While the community did not initiate the trail, the businesses that have shifted their business model and embraced the visitors are seeing an economic boost.

Challis allows ATVs and side-by-sides to be ridden in town everywhere, with the proper licenses, except highways and the main expressways. The Village Inn encourages their guests to unload their four-wheelers, park their truck and trailer in the back and ride from there. “People are blown away by that and they love it,” said Challis’s Village Inn Manager Stacy Mills.

Read more: https://goo.gl/fpgQmT


Wounded Veterans Find Healing at Lake Mead National Recreation Area
Courtesy of the American Recreation Coalition

Six wounded veterans helped the National Park Service preserve the nation’s history and culture at Lake Mead National Recreation Area Nov. 7-9. At the same time, they found healing.

The vets are part of the Wounded American Veterans Experience SCUBA Project, an organization that helps veterans overcome combat injuries through scuba diving. Just before Veterans Day, they teamed up with the National Park Service’s Submerged Resources Center to conduct their first dive within a national park.

“We have a lot of precious resources underwater in national parks, and we need to look at them, inspect them and keep track of them,” said Dave Conlin, chief of the SRC. His team visits Lake Mead National Recreation Area regularly to assess the multiple artifacts that lie beneath Lake Mead and Lake Mohave.

On Nov. 8, Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard and Air Force veterans dove on an aerial ferry that now lies at the bottom of Lake Mohave. The ferry was suspended by cables above the Colorado River in the 1930s and was used to transport cars, people and goods from one side of the river to the other.

Read more: https://goo.gl/FBSUWQ


Cliven Bundy walks for involvement in 2014 standoff
Courtesy of High Country News

By Tay Wiles

On Jan. 8, a U.S. District Court judge dismissed all charges against Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy, sons Ammon and Ryan, and Montana militiaman Ryan Payne due to misconduct by prosecutors. This is the worst blow yet to prosecutors in a high-profile case that has involved three trials since early 2017 and has captured public attention across the nation. The dismissal raises major questions about the Bureau of Land Management’s ability to enforce regulations on the public land it manages, and represents a serious challenge to Western conservationists who want to see public lands preserved in accordance with federal environmental laws.

Read more: https://goo.gl/Ak1JvK


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Webinar: Trails Transform America - Leveraging the Power of Connected Trail Infrastructure
Courtesy of CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking

Date: January 17, 2018, 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm ET
Presenter(s): Jenny Selin (Morgantown, WV City Council), Husein Cumber (FL East Coast Industries) & Greg Cox (San Diego County, CA)
Host: Rails-to-Trails Conservancy
Cost: Free

In this webinar, we'll hear from business leaders and elected officials from all points on the political spectrum about the value that connected trail networks bring to their communities. Their stories demonstrate the transformative power of trails to promote public health, economic growth, transportation and job creation.

For more information: https://goo.gl/CXoi9i


2018 NACo Legislative Conference

March 3-7, 2018 - Washington, DC

The NACo Legislative Conference, held annually in Washington, D.C., brings together over 2,000 elected and appointed county officials to focus on federal policy issues that impact counties and our residents. The 2018 Legislative Conference is a can’t-miss opportunity to elevate the county voice at the national level. Attendees will participate in second-to-none educational sessions, interact with federal officials and descend on Capitol Hill, delivering the message that federal policies matter to counties and counties matter to America!

For more information: https://goo.gl/RtUfQ4


2018 Special Park District Forum

May 21-23, 2018 - Charleston, South Carolina

The Charleston County Park & Recreation Commission in South Carolina is honored to host the 2018 Special Park District Forum. Over the years, the forum has been hosted by premier open-space facilities, parks and recreation agencies, and forest preserves throughout the United States and Canada. This annual event is a unique and interactive forum that has drawn park and recreation industry professionals from around North America for more than 40 years.

Collaborate. Cooperate. Communicate.

We invite you join us in Charleston for the exchange of best practice information about managing and operating regional-scale parks, facilities, trails, natural areas, historical sites, and related programs and services.

Read more: https://www.spdf2018.com/


2018 NOHVCC and INOHVAA Annual Conferences
Courtesy of NOHVCC

This year NOHVCC and INOHVAA will conduct their annual conference in Grand Rapids, Michigan on August 14-18. The conferences will follow the typical schedule that will be familiar to many of you. After preliminary activities on the 14th, the INOHVAA conference will begin sessions on the 15th, a mobile field workshop for attendees of both conferences on Thursday, August 16, joint INOHVAA/NOHVCC sessions on Friday, August 17 and, finally, the NOHVCC conference will conclude with sessions on Saturday and a banquet on Saturday evening.

For more informationhttps://goo.gl/rW4H2J


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Parks and Nature Business Services Manager
Metro, Oregon
Posted January 10, 2018. Closes January 19, 2018.

Parks and Nature Superintendent
Metro, Oregon
Posted January 10, 2018. Closes January 29, 2018.

For more information: http://nacpro.org/Job_Posts


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