Members of the Outdoor Recreation Industry Roundtable (ORIR), including Archery Trade Association President and CEO Jay McAninch, met with Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and other administration officials to discuss outdoor recreation's importance to the American economy, how increased partnerships can grow jobs, and how trade agreements impact the outdoor recreation industry. Photo Credit: U.S. Department of Commerce | Office of Public Affairs | Owen Burgess
Washington, D.C. (July 28, 2017) – Outdoor recreation and its impact on the American economy took center stage at the U.S. Department of Commerce on July 27. Members of theOutdoor Recreation Industry Roundtable (ORIR), including Archery Trade AssociationPresident and CEO Jay McAninch, met with Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and other administration officials to discuss outdoor recreation's importance to the American economy, how increased partnerships can grow jobs, and how trade agreements impact the outdoor recreation industry.
Outdoor recreation is vital to the economic and healthful well-being of America. The industry generates $887 billion in direct spending and supports 7.6 million jobs across all 50 states, including jobs in bowhunting and archery. Many of the jobs supported by the industry are in rural communities and small businesses, making outdoor recreation an essential part of American life.
ORIR urged that the new Outdoor Recreation Satellite Account – created as part of the recently enacted Outdoor Recreation Jobs and Economic Impact (Outdoor REC) Act and managed by the Commerce Department's Bureau of Economic Analysis – be expedited and measure all outdoor recreation economic activity, not just the economic impact of recreation on federal lands and waters. ORIR offered to provide expertise, data and more to assist in the development of ORSA and urged that it then be used to influence public-sector budget and policy decisions.
"It was a pleasure to meet with Secretary Ross and thank him for the 'sea change' he has already implemented at the Department of Commerce," McAninch said. "The Secretary has installed a culture that understands business challenges but is working to remove obstacles to job creation and support actions that sustain economic growth."
Additionally, ORIR members highlighted the economic importance of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) to the outdoor recreation industry, noting key trade partnerships with Canada and Mexico and recommending that the overall framework of NAFTA be retained but important "harmonizing" provisions be added.
Millions of international and domestic tourists visit America's public lands and waters each year, spending money at local businesses that provide lodging, dining, retail and outdoor recreation experiences like archery and bowhunting. Increasing international and domestic visitation to federal lands and waters and surrounding towns can help stimulate the economy and create jobs in both urban and rural America. Partnerships between the outdoor recreation industry and the Department of Commerce can help ensure that America's Great Outdoors welcomes visitors – new and returning alike – for years to come.
McAninch explained: "In addition to embracing outdoor recreation as a critical segment of the U.S. economy, I was pleased that Secretary Ross was actively engaged on many important trade issues important to outdoor recreation companies. ATA's archery manufacturers are gratified to hear that protecting the intellectual property rights of American companies and dealing with the flow of counterfeit products – especially in ecommerce – was something the Secretary and his team not only were aware of but were on top of as a priority business problem."
The Secretary showed interest when ORIR explained the importance of delivering the benefits of international tourism to all 50 states with the proven and growing allure of parks and other special places and was encouraged to change the focus of marine sanctuaries and marine fisheries policies to support recreational enjoyment.
ORIR told Secretary Ross that it seeks to partner with the Department of Commerce to keep America's recreation economy strong by ensuring that the American people and their international guests have access to healthy, active outdoor fun on their public lands and waters and outlined assets ranging from major communications channels to trade shows to fresh ideas.
To see ORIR's presentation to Secretary Ross, click here.
About the Archery Trade Association
The Archery Trade Association is the organization for manufacturers, retailers, distributors, sales representatives and others working in the archery and bowhunting industry. The ATA has served its members since 1953. It is dedicated to making the industry profitable by decreasing business overhead, reducing taxes and government regulation, and increasing participation in archery and bowhunting. The organization also owns and operates the ATA Trade Show, the archery and bowhunting industry's largest and longest-running trade show worldwide. For more information, like the ATA Trade Show on Facebook, follow @ATATradeShow on Twitter, or learn more about archery and bowhunting at Archery360.com and Bowhunting360.com.
About the Outdoor Recreation Industry Roundtable
The Outdoor Recreation Industry Roundtable is a coalition of America's leading outdoor recreation trade associations working to promote the policy and legislative reforms needed to grow the outdoor recreation economy. Roundtable members represent the thousands of U.S. businesses that produce vehicles, equipment, gear, apparel and services for the millions of Americans who enjoy our nation's parks, waterways, byways, trails and outdoor spaces. Combined, the various business sectors within the outdoor recreation industry generate $887 billion per year in economic activity and provide an estimated 7.6 million direct jobs. Coalition members produce the eight largest recreation trade shows in the U.S., and their members annually contribute $40 billion in federal excise tax, sales tax and duties.