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Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke Touts Expanded Recreation Opportunities

By SEMA Washington, D.C., Staff

Tom Jr.
SEMA members Tom Brooks with his son T.C. (Truckin Thunder) with their ’16 Jeep Wrangler in front of the U.S. Department of the Interior.
Members of the Outdoor Recreation Industry Roundtable (ORIR) met with U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke to discuss expanding public-private partnerships.
ryan zinkeInterior Secretary Ryan Zinke, Tom Brooks and T.C. Brooks discussed aftermarket modifications made to the ’16 Jeep Wrangler.

U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke intends to create a Recreation Advisory Committee to help expand public-private partnerships on America’s public lands. The announcement was made in conjunction with a July 18 meeting at the Department of the Interior with Outdoor Recreation Industry Roundtable (ORIR) representatives, federal lawmakers and high-ranking officials.  

The ORIR is comprised of 17 industry associations, including SEMA, representing off-roading, camping, fishing, boating, hiking, archery and other sports. Combined, the outdoor recreation industry generates $887 billion per year in economic activity and provides an estimated 7.6 million direct jobs. The ORIR’s primary mission is to spotlight the economic value of outdoor recreation and pursue federal policy reforms for rebuilding and expanding the nation’s recreation-related infrastructure.

SEMA members Tom Brooks and his son T.C. with Truckin Thunder participated in an outdoor display of “made in America” recreation products. Secretary Zinke stopped by to inquire about their ’16 Jeep Wrangler, which has been outfitted with a multitude of performance and styling aftermarket parts. Truckin Thunder is a family-owned business that specializes in the sale, installation and service of towing and hauling accessories for both personal-use trucks and commercial fleets.

At the meeting and outdoor display, roundtable participants gave specific examples of how public-private partnerships can enhance the outdoor recreation experience and positively impact the economy. This includes reducing a multi-billion-dollar maintenance backlog, modernizing campsites and extending service hours and seasons. Public-private partnerships are already utilized by the National Park Service and other agencies, such as managing campgrounds, marinas and restaurants. 

For details, contact Stuart Gosswein at stuartg@sema.org.