Outdoor recreation gets another state-sponsored pitch

(The Center Square) — The Office of Outdoor Recreation pitched lawmakers on Tuesday for more financial support amid the Shapiro administration’s weeklong tourism campaign.

The industry, according to Director Nathan Reigner, contributed $17 billion to Pennsylvania’s GDP in 2022 and “is a driver of our economy and economic competitiveness strategy.”

He told two House committees during a joint hearing that the office’s mission was to unite, grow, and strengthen the commonwealth’s outdoor economy with a “whole-of-government” effort.

This, on day two of Gov. Josh Shapiro’s week-long RV tour of the state.

Housed within the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Reigner positioned the office as a “phone book” organization and not a “wallet” organization. It works across government agencies as a “hub and convener,” he said, “an entity to tie together parts of the state government involved in outdoor-based economic development.”

The outdoor economy, he noted, is 2% of Pennsylvania’s GDP
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