SEMA eNews Vol. 17, No. 15, April 10, 2014

Legislation Introduced to Designate the First “National” OHV Recreation Area

By SEMA Washington, D.C., Staff

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The Johnson Valley OHV Recreation Area hosts the famous “King of the Hammers” Race, which drew more than 50,000 people to the 2014 event.
   

A bill has been introduced in the U.S. Congress to include “National” within the title “Johnson Valley Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation Area.” Last year, congress passed the National Defense Authorization Act, which designated nearly 100,000 acres of Johnson Valley, California, as a federal OHV recreation area. Under the new law, about 79,000 acres of the same area was transferred to the U.S. Marine Corps for military training needs. Although the State of California had set aside most of Johnson Valley in 1980 for OHV recreation, last year was the first time the federal government had specifically dedicated land for this type of motorized activity.

“This might seem like a small change, but it’s important,” said the bill sponsor, Rep. Paul Cook (R-CA). “It will show that Johnson Valley is of national significance, raising its profile for economic purposes and within the federal government, which owns the land.”

The Johnson Valley OHV Recreation Area contains a unique mix of open desert, dry lake beds and formidable rock-crawling formations that attracts four-wheeler enthusiasts from around the world. The area hosts the famous “King of the Hammers” Race, which drew more than 50,000 people to the 2014 event.

Rep. Cook led last year’s effort in congress to designate the OHV area. SEMA worked collaboratively with the Off-Road Business Association (ORBA) and a number of other organizations to support that pursuit.

For more information, contact Stuart Gosswein at stuartg@sema.org.

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