The International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) confirmed last week that Florida and Kansas opted out of the Recreational Trails Program under the new federal transportation bill passed by Congress, while 33 other states will continue to participate.
… The RTP is an $85 million program that strongly benefits mountain bikers by helping pay for the development and maintenance of thousands of trail miles.However, in reauthorizing the program earlier this year, Congress included a new provision that allows governors to opt-out of funding the program, thus diverting the money back to a general fund that pays for traditional transportation projects. Governors that decide to refuse RTP money must do so by Sept. 1.
So basically FL and KS said no thanks to trails–put our money back in the pot for more roads?
Here’s a list of the states that accepted RTP funding:
•District of Columbia
[quote="ninjajody":3e5zkvrz]No North Carolina either, Hmmm……
Wow really? Another shocker. I would hope that some of these traditionally MTB-friendly states will respond soon.[/quote:3e5zkvrz]
Anyone have a clue who we should contact to get our states to respond? I could write the governor but that would probably get lost in the mail.
Don’t know about Kansas, but FL Governor Rick Scott is a one term Idiot! , Is this a one-time offer, or can a sane governor opt in later? Rick Scott is power mad so he bought the office with something like 75 million dollars of his own (dirty) money! No concern for Floridians, only power he never had before.
I believe the governors have a chance to accept or decline the funding each year. The crazy thing is it’s always a struggle to keep the program funded anyway. Each year Congress threatens (or attempts) to axe the entire program and use the proceeds elsewhere despite this:
The RTP funds come from the Federal Highway Trust Fund, and represent a portion of the motor fuel excise tax collected from nonhighway recreational fuel use: fuel used for off-highway recreation by snowmobiles, all-terrain vehicles, off-highway motorcycles, and off-highway light trucks.
The RTP funds are distributed to the States by legislative formula: half of the funds are distributed equally among all States, and half are distributed in proportion to the estimated amount of nonhighway recreational fuel use in each State.
The whole thing is pretty much a mess of competing interests, misaligned incentives, and of course politics.