SEPTEMBER 2010
America’s Great Outdoors Listening Sessions Conclude; Final Opportunity for Public Input

In April of this year, the President convened a historic White House Conference on conservation and recreation.  At that conference attended by NRPA leaders, members, and staff, the President tasked four federal agencies to lead the America’s Great Outdoors initiative.
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NRPA and President’s Council On Fitness, Sports and Nutrition Highlight the Importance of Getting Active

In August NRPA CEO Barbara Tulipane taped a video segment with Shellie Pfohl, executive director of the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition and Dominique Dawes, Co-Chair of the Council and gold medal Olympian.  The video, which aired at the recent America’s Great Outdoors listening session in Chicago and will be broadcast by the media, encourages people to take advantage of their local parks and participate in the President’s Active Lifestyle Challenge.  View the video. 
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Appropriations Outlook

The House and the Senate made progress on the FY11 appropriations bills prior to adjourning for the August Recess. The full House passed two of the appropriations bills, and subcommittee markups have been completed on the remaining ten funding bills, including the Interior bill.   
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Land and Water Conservation Fund

As most of you know, the House passed the Consolidated Land Energy and Aquatic Resources Act (CLEAR) (H.R. 3534) prior to adjourning for the August recess.  It includes full and dedicated funding of LWCF at $900 million per year.  It does not include language to ensure a minimum funding level for the stateside program.  While a bi-partisan group of House members attempted to amend the bill to include such language, their efforts were thwarted by the Department of Interior’s declaration that it did not support such a provision.
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Urban Parks Legislation

In the House, Rep. Albio Sires’ (D-NJ) Urban Revitalization and Livable Communities Act (URLC, H.R. 3734) now has 131 co-sponsors.  This legislation would provide funding opportunities for rehabilitation of existing, and construction of new, green space and recreational areas and facilities in urban communities.  NRPA staff has worked closely with Congressman Sires’ staff and believes that one of the best opportunities to advance the legislation will be to attach it to Rep. Perlmutter’s (D-CO) Livable Communities Act (H.R. 4590), which may move through committee once Congress returns from the August recess. 
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Livable Communities Act

The Livable Communities Act (S. 1619 and H.R. 4590), introduced in the Senate by Sen. Dodd (D-CT) and passed out of committee, offers potential funding for parks and recreation agencies by allowing them to partner with other government agencies and “metropolitan planning organizations.”  Funding would be provided through comprehensive planning grants and sustainability challenge grants designed to encourage smart growth and comprehensive planning of land use, housing, community development, and transportation infrastructure.  
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No Child Left Inside Act  (S. 866 and H.R. 2054):

The No Child Left Inside Act (NCLI) seeks to expand environmental literacy by providing grants to states that voluntarily develop an Environmental Literacy Plan, for the development and implementation of the plan.   Since the introduction of this bill, the intent has been to move it as part of the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA aka No Child Left Behind).  While there have been some subcommittee hearings on ESEA, movement is unlikely this year.   
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Take a Child to the Park Week Resolution (H. Res. 1536)

Congressmen Glenn Thompson (R-PA) and Tim Holden (D-PA) have introduced a resolution highlighting the critical role that local parks and recreation areas play in offering children and families close to home opportunities to engage in physical activity, reconnect with nature, and develop important social skills.  The resolution, H. Res. 1536, would designate the third week of every July as “National Take a Child to the Park Week.”  
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Moving Outdoors In Nature Act:

Earlier this year, Rep. Ron Kind (D-WI) introduced the Healthy Communities through Helping to Offer Incentives and Choices to Everyone in Society Act of 2010 (H.R. 5209).  This is a comprehensive anti-obesity bill that was introduced to make the statement that health reform isn’t enough, and more needs to be done to get people physically active and to improve nutrition.   
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Child Nutrition Reauthorization

The Senate recently passed a Child Nutrition Reauthorization in the form of the Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Act of 2010 (S. 3307).  This legislation will continue funding for programs such as the Summer Food Service Program and the Child and Adult Care Food Program.  These programs assist park and recreation agencies across the country in their efforts to provide critically needed and nutritious meals to children and families.     
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Congressional Calendar


The Senate also has announced its Fall schedule. The Senate is scheduled to be in session from September 13 to October 8. Then, the Senate will reconvene after the midterm elections for the lame-duck session beginning November 15, but take the following week off for Thanksgiving. The Senate will return November 29 and remain in session for an undetermined period. The House will reconvene September 14.  The fall schedule for the House has not been announced, but indications are that the House may adjourn prior to October in order to devote more time to election campaigns. 



Consumer Product Safety Commission Issues Recall of Stadium Light Poles

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has announced a recall of specific Whitco Company LP poles. Consumers should immediately stop using recalled products until they are inspected and repaired. 
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