Sunday, August 9, 2015
Recreational Trails Program in Senate Highway Bill
horsecouncil.org Submitted by admin on Thu, 08/06/2015 On July 30, the Senate passed its version of a multi-year national highway bill, called the DRIVE Act. The bill would reauthorize the Federal Highway Administration’s Recreational Trails Program (RTP). An amendment by Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) was filed that would have eliminated the Transportation Alternatives Program, which includes the Recreational Trails Program. However, this amendment was not considered and the RTP program will continue un- changed if this bill becomes law. Grassroots support from recreational trail users, including equestrians played an important role in making sure RTP was included in the Senate-passed bill. The AHC appreciates all the individual horsemen and organizations that contacted their Senators in support of RTP. Since its inception RTP has provided money for thousands of state and local trail projects across the country, including many that benefit equestrians. RTP provides funding directly to the states for recreational trails and trail-related facilities for all recreational trail users. It is funded with a portion of the gas taxes paid into the Highway Trust Fund by recreational off-highway vehicle users. For now, because of disagreements over funding a multi-year highway bill, the House of Representatives is unlikely to consider the Senate Passed DRIVE Act. In the meantime the Congress has passed a 3 mouth extension of the current highway bill, which includes the RTP program. If you have any questions, please contact the AHC.