January 5, 2017

Volume 35/Issue 1

In This Issue...

  1. Above the Fold
  2. Member Forum
  3. Member News
  4. News
  5. Resources
  6. Training
  7. Jobs

Send us your news!

Have you read an article that you think other outdoor recreation professionals might be interested in?  How about an award winning project that overcame some unique challenges?  Have you published a technical manual or handbook?  Do you have internships or job opportunities for college students, recent graduates or seasoned professionals?  

We gather our news from a lot of sources, including members.  We cannot promise to publish or post everything, but we want our newsletter to represent the interests of our members. 

Send your news to [email protected]

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Above the Fold

Conference Scholarship Opportunities
SORP will be awarding Student and New Professional Conference Scholarships to attend the 2017 National Outdoor Recreation Conference in Scottsdale, Arizona from May 1-4.

Both scholarships offer a $500 check for travel expenses, a free conference registration and a SORP membership. Click on the link below for more details.

You do not need to be a SORP member to apply.

The deadline for SORP applications is Monday, January 16, 2017, midnight ET.

For more information: www.recpro.org/conference-scholarships

Call for SORP Award Nominations

The Society of Outdoor Recreation Professionals (SORP) is now accepting nominations for the Individual Service and Project Excellence Awards to be presented at the 2017 National Outdoor Recreation Conference in Scottsdale, Arizona from May 1-4, 2017. The awards recognize outstanding accomplishments in the field of outdoor recreation planning, management, research, and policy.

We've made a few changes to the award program this year. The Distinguished Service Award is now known as the Individual Service Award. Statewide recreation plans (such as SCORP Plans) are now recognized under the Project Excellence category. And each organization (office or unit) is limited to one nomination.

The deadline for award nominations is Friday, January 27, 2017, midnight EST.

For more information: www.recpro.org/awards 

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Member Forum

Question from a colleague

New Hampshire is seeking information on what methods are being used by park staff, administrators and designers to determine how many toilet fixtures are required in both visitor center type buildings as well as freestanding toilet buildings in recreational areas where building occupancy doesn’t apply?

Scott Coruth, Architect
(603) 271-2606 Ext. 305
[email protected]

Got an issue or best practice you want to share? Send us the details and we will publish it in the next News from SORP.

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Member News

New leader for county parks: Marlene Finley retires, interim director takes over in new year
Courtesy of the SM Dailey Journal

By Samantha Weigel

Parks Director Marlene Finley will retire at the end of this week after three years with the county and soon-to-be Interim Director Sarah Birkeland will take over in the new year.

Birkeland, who began as assistant director of parks in February, said she’s grateful to have learned from Finley and is thrilled to be carrying on her predecessor’s work. The two women’s paths crossed years ago while Finley worked for the U.S. Forest Service and Birkeland was working as an attorney for the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Birkeland spent 12 years with the federal agency and worked out of their San Francisco office before joining the county.

Read more: http://tinyurl.com/zsvq5rx

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The Qualities Needed In The Next National Park Service Director
Courtesy of National Parks Traveler

Jonathan Jarvis, the 18th director of the National Park Service, retired today. Who will be his successor? Harry Butowsky, a retired National Park Service historian, outlines some qualities needed in the agency's 19th director.

In 2017, the National Park Service begins not only a new year but also a new era with new leadership. The National Park Service finished its first 100 years with many examples of excellent leadership and, unfortunately, some examples of poor or no leadership.

The past seven years have been hard on the National Park Service. Our agency has been beset by low morale, a continued lack of adequate funding that goes back to the last century, a growing maintenance backlog, sexual harassment scandals, overcrowding in our national parks, fraud by at least one regional director, and an inability to turn the centennial of the National Park Service into a solid foundation upon which to base the next 100 years.

What is needed now is leadership of the type the National Park Service has not experienced for the last generation.

Read more: http://www.nationalparkstraveler.com/2017/01/op-ed-qualities-needed-next-national-park-service-director

State Parks director reassigned
Courtesy of Tallahassee.com

By James Call

FLORIDA - Donald Forgione, longtime director of the state parks, has been reassigned to Paynes Prairie State Park, leaving environmentalists to ask why.

Forgione is a 32-year Department of Environmental Protection employee and came up through the ranks – the first person to rise from park ranger to director of the Florida Park Service.

Monday night Deputy Secretary for Land and Recreation Gary Clark announced in a letter to stakeholders that Lisa Edgar will replace Forgione as parks director. Edgar has served the state for more than 20 years; first as a policy analyst in the Chiles’ administration, then as a DEP deputy secretary in the Bush administration and for the past 12 as a Public Service Commissioner regulating utilities.

Read more: http://www.tallahassee.com/story/news/2016/12/20/state-parks-director-reassigned/95630396/

Board chair 'very concerned' about termination of state parks administrator
Courtesy of the Missoulian

By Tom Kuglin

MONTANA – A divide between officials in different divisions of Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks likely contributed to the termination of the state parks administrator’s employment Tuesday, the chairman of the board that oversees Montana State Parks said.

An email sent to FWP staff Tuesday said State Parks Administrator Chas Van Genderen is no longer employed by the department, effective immediately, the Associated Press reported.

The email's author, FWP chief of staff Paul Sihler, wrote that Van Genderen’ s departure after eight years is a personnel issue and he will not comment on it, according to the AP.

On Wednesday, Montana State Parks and Recreation Board Chairman Tom Towe said the decision to part ways was not mutual, and he heaped praise on Van Genderen.

“I can say this, Chas was terminated. He didn’t leave on his own free will,” Towe said. “I’m very disappointed because Chas knew the park business extremely well. He knows the parks and he knows Montana and he was probably the most dynamic parks director we’ve ever had.”

Read more: http://tinyurl.com/zvjqbxu

How Would You Design A Parking Reservation System For Muir Woods National Monument?
Courtesy of the National Parks Traveler

CALIFORNIA - Can you design the best reservation system for parking at Muir Woods National Monument in California? The National Park Service is interested in hearing from you.

With plans to implement a reservation system next fall, the Park Service is soliciting proposals to develop and manage a reservation system and onsite parking at Muir Woods to help reduce overcrowding at the monument. Prospective bidders may submit proposals through April 18, 2017.

Growing visitor demand at Muir Woods has led to overcrowding and traffic congestion during peak visitation periods, conditions that detract from the principal goal for the monument: providing an inspiring and contemplative experience.

Read more: http://www.nationalparkstraveler.com/2016/12/how-would-you-design-parking-reservation-system-muir-woods-national-monument

To Diversify the Outdoors, We Have to Think About Who We're Excluding
Courtesy of OutsideOnline.com

By Erin Berger

You may have seen Ambreen Tariq’s selfies and peaceful tent shots in your feed, and you may have noticed that her account isn’t the usual outdoor-lifestyle Insta fare. The 33-year-old runs the Brown People Camping account, which has gained more than 2,000 followers since she started posting in August. Tariq, who lives in D.C., uses the platform to share photos of her adventures, everywhere from Virginia’s Shenandoah National Park to New Mexico’s White Sands National Monument. But just as important for her are the captions: Tariq talks about how her identities—as a woman, a person of color, an immigrant, and a Muslim—inform her experience outdoors. We had a wide-ranging conversation with Tariq about why she created the account, how it’s been received, and why the outdoors community needs to be more welcoming towards newcomers or those who don't fit the traditional mold of the outdoorsy type.

Read more: https://www.outsideonline.com/2131911/diversify-outdoors-we-have-think-about-who-were-excluding

Wisconsin DNR Censors All Climate Change Info
Courtesy of Urban Milwaukee

By James Rowen

Climate change censors driven by science denial and obeisance to polluters these days at the GOP-managed, Scott Walker-redefined “chamber of commerce mentality” Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources are at it again.

Not content with having already stripped content and links from an agency webpage about climate change, the ideologues intent on scrubbing science off these pages and sowing doubt and confusion about the consensus view of experts worldwide about climate change have edited, deleted and otherwise compressed information in order to whitewash long-standing concepts and facts off a climate change page about the Great Lakes.

It’s a continuation of Walker’s deliberate destruction of the DNR – – which we also learned he is considering completely breaking apart to further hamstring and weaken public science, conservation and pollution enforcement.

Read more: http://urbanmilwaukee.com/2016/12/26/op-ed-dnr-censors-all-climate-change-info/

Court upholds gun ban in Delaware state parks
Courtesy of Delaware Online

By Karl Baker

A Delaware Superior Court judge upheld a ban on carrying firearms in state parks and forests for purposes other than hunting.

The challenge to the rule was brought by multiple plaintiffs, including the Bridgeville Rifle and Pistol Club – a 1,200 member organization in southern Delaware. In a civil complaint, they argued the administrative codes are "inconsistent with and pre-empted by" both state law and the state constitution.

Read more: http://www.delawareonline.com/story/news/2017/01/02/court-upholds-gun-ban-delaware-state-parks/96004370/

Secretary Jewell Announces Grants to Put Young People to Work on Public Lands
Courtesy of the US Department of the Interior

U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell announced more than $350,000 in funding to engage youth and veterans in hands-on conservation projects on public lands from Big Bend National Park in Texas to North Cascades National Park in Washington State. The grants are part of the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps (21CSC), an ongoing national effort to prepare the next generation of outdoor stewards by training and employing thousands of America’s young adults to protect, restore and enhance our nation’s public lands and waters.

Jewell also announced that travel company Expedia is donating $50,000 in 2017 to fund firefighting crews comprised of returning veterans. Launched in 2013 the 21CSC has raised more than $20 million in donations since 2013 from businesses, foundations and federal agencies. Expedia joins companies like American Express, REI, The North Face, Thule, American Eagle Outfitters, CamelBak, Coca-Cola, The Campion Foundation, Backwoods, the Albertson Family Foundation and Youth Outdoor Legacy Fund in a national movement to invest in and help prepare future conservation leaders by providing meaningful and lasting opportunities to play, learn, serve and work in the great outdoors.

Read more: https://www.doi.gov/pressreleases/secretary-jewell-announces-grants-put-young-people-work-public-lands

BLM To Dramatically Speed Up Completion of Alaska Statehood Land Transfer
Courtesy of Your Public Lands, BLM's E-Newsletter

ALASKA – The Bureau of Land Management today took the first steps toward dramatically accelerating the rate at which it transfers Federal lands to the State of Alaska. The agency will now use satellite-based navigation—a more advanced form of the technology that drives many smartphone applications—to help mark, define, and establish the boundaries of State lands. This innovation will fulfill the promise of the Alaska Statehood Act in half the time, save $60 million or more for the American taxpayer, and bring major new economic development opportunities to the state.

When it became a state in 1959, Alaska was guaranteed more than 100 million acres of land within the state’s boundaries. After nearly 60 years since statehood, roughly 40 percent of the land transfer remains unfinished. Completing the job using traditional methods, which have been largely unchanged since 1963, is projected to take at least two decades and cost taxpayers more than $120 million.

Read more: https://www.blm.gov/press-release/blm-dramatically-speed-completion-alaska-statehood-land-transfer

BLM Announces $79 Million for Conservation and Recreation Projects in Nevada
Courtesy of Your Public Lands, BLM's E-Newsletter

NEVADA – Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Director Neil Kornze today announced a package of 30 conservation and recreation projects totaling nearly $80 million in a ceremony at Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.
Funding for the projects was generated through the sale of public lands under the Southern Nevada Public Land Management Act (SNPLMA). Today’s announcement of $79 million in projects, in conjunction with $30 million previously announced, brings the total SNPLMA funding this year to nearly $109 million.
“These projects are a benefit to both the environment and the economy," said Assistant Secretary for Land and Minerals Management Janice Schneider, who approved the grants. “This program supports an incredible legacy of improved quality of life for all Nevadans.”
Through SNPLMA the BLM, in collaboration with its partners, funds projects that benefit local communities and improve the overall quality of life by restoring landscapes, protecting environmentally-sensitive areas, supporting recreation opportunities, and protecting rural communities from wildfire. A significant portion of the funds are shared with local governments and the State of Nevada.

Read more: https://www.blm.gov/press-release/blm-director-kornze-announces-79-million-conservation-and-recreation-projects-nevada

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NPS Releases New Guidelines For Donations And Philanthropic Partnerships
Courtesy of National Parks Traveler

By Scott Johnson

The National Park Service today updated its guidelines for donations and philanthropic partnerships, clarifying how and where donors can be acknowledged – naming rights in parks still will not be permitted – and expanding the range of partner opportunities – including with individuals and start-ups, but also corporations that produce or distribute alcohol.

Director’s Order 21, last revised in 2008, was signed by Director Jonathan Jarvis after three years of work, including input from a committee of philanthropists and review by the public and employees. It simplifies the agreement process with partners; recognizes the importance of all types of philanthropy, including in-kind donations and volunteerism; and broadens the scope of giving through electronic donations, mobile giving, and individual and planned giving.

Read more: http://www.nationalparkstraveler.com/2016/12/park-service-releases-new-guidelines-donations-and-philanthropic-partnerships

NPS Adopts New Guidelines for Resource Protection
Courtesy of the National Parks Traveler

A policy enacted last week updates the National Park Service’s guidelines for stewardship and reaffirms the agency’s “predominant” duty to protect natural and cultural resources.

Director’s Order 100, signed December 20 by Park Service Director Jonathan Jarvis, provides internal guidance for making decisions about how parks are managed. Three criteria – best available science, adherence to the law, and long-term public interest – will drive a bureau-wide shift toward interdisciplinary collaboration, increased scientific literacy, and more training.

In particular, the order adopts two policies: the precautionary principle and adaptive management. The precautionary principle requires Park Service managers to err on the side of caution to prevent resource impairment when there is uncertainty about a decision’s impact. Adaptive management encourages adjustments to these decisions as outcomes become clearer through monitoring and better scientific understanding.

Read more: http://www.nationalparkstraveler.com/2016/12/national-park-service-adopts-new-guidelines-resource-protection

BLM Releases Guidance for Improving and Sustaining Tribal Relationships
Courtesy of Your Public Lands, BLM's E-Newsletter

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) today announced the release of the new BLM 1780 Tribal Relations Manual and Handbook. The President and the Department of the Interior (Department) have made tribal relations and tribal consultation a priority of the Administration. This new guidance represents the culmination of years of outreach and coordination between the BLM and American Indian tribes, and has been developed to complement the direction of the Administration and the Department.

Beginning in August 2008, the BLM initiated comprehensive outreach to the tribes that garnered valuable input for improving BLM tribal consultation policy and practice. Tribes also provided insights regarding tribal consultation required by the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) and National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The decision to create a comprehensive manual resulted from tribal feedback. The new manual and handbook will assist BLM’s line managers and responsible staffs who carry out consultation and cooperation across a wide spectrum of resources and issues of concern to tribes.

Read more: https://www.blm.gov/press-release/blm-releases-guidance-improving-and-sustaining-tribal-relationships

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Webinar: Huts for Hiking, Skiing, and Biking - Why, Where, and How?
Courtesy of American Trails

Date: Thursday, January 19, 2017
Time: 10:00 to 11:30 am Pacific (1:00 to 2:30 pm Eastern)
Price: Free for American Trails Members / $55 Nonmembers
CEUs: $20 fee   

This webinar will provide an overview of hut systems in USA and around the world, which includes a wide range of accommodations systems such as shelters, yurts, platform tents, inns and B&B's, hostels, and mountain huts of every size and kind.

The focus will be on where and why these hut systems exist, and how they operate. The webinar is for people at all levels of expertise. Trails are primarily dirt/natural surface and often improved with standard trail construction techniques. However, some hut/trail systems use country roads for part of the journey, depending on access restrictions. Most hut systems are optimized for skiing and/or hiking, but some also accommodate biking.

For more information: http://www.americantrails.org/resources/long/webinar-hut-systems-demas.html

Webinar: The Federal Lands Transfer - What It Means and What You Should Know
Courtesy of the Federal Lands Transportation Institute Training Newsletter

Date: March 8, 2017
Time: 2:00 to 3:00 pm ET
Cost: Free
Organization: Partnership for the National Trails System

Some members of Congress remain intent on wrestling control of public lands from the federal government. The idea is not new. Yet transfer proponents continue to perpetuate many myths and half-truths in making their case. One factor driving their push is the claim that the states or local governments are better suited to determine the uses and fate of our public lands. Join us as we discuss the range of values of our federal public lands that are being ignored by land transfer proponents, explore why western public lands differ in many aspects from their eastern counterparts, and speculate how a large-scale federal land transfer might affect public access including management of National Scenic and Historic Trails. We will conclude the discussion with a summary of methods by which your organization might join with others to help "keep public lands in public hands."

For more information:

Sustainable Trails Conference
Courtesy of the Federal Lands Transportation Institute Training Newsletter

Date: March 12-18, 2017
Location: Bend, OR
Organization: Professional Trail Builders Association (PTBA)

The Sustainable Trails Conference is very excited to announce that we will be heading to Bend, OR to offer the absolute must attend conference for anyone involved in trails construction, maintenance, design, development and use. The 2017 Sustainable Trails Conference features the PTBA Sustainable Trails Workshops, a technical track of Concurrent Session exploring all of the aspects of good trail design, construction, planning and maintenance, a local Legacy Trail, and of course the world famous Outdoor Trade Show and Demonstration Area. No other trails conference can boast the amount of experiential education available at this conference. You really cannot afford to miss this conference!

For more information: http://www.trailbuilders.org/training/sustainable-trails-conference-bend-or-march-12-18-2017

International Trails Symposium
Courtesy of the Federal Lands Transportation Institute Training Newsletter

Date: May 7-10, 2017
Location: Dayton, OH
Organization: American Trails

Registration is now open.

We are proud to feature for a second Symposium the Professional TrailBuilders Association's (PTBA) Sustainable Trails Workshop Series, Legacy Trail, Technical Track, and Outdoor Trade Show. This will be an inspiring and educational conference as we come together as a trails community.

For more information:

Planning and Managing Tourism in Protected Areas
Courtesy of Colorado State University

September 7-23, 2017
The seminar will begin on the campus of Colorado State University (CSU) in Fort Collins, Colorado, next to the majestic Rocky Mountains, one hour north of Denver, Colorado’s capital city. Most of the seminar will be spent in the field visiting protected areas offering a wide range of tourism programs. These parks and reserves include a wide variety of habitat types and cultural resources and are managed by federal, state, and local governments; NGOs; and private landowners. Highlights will include trips to Rocky Mountain, Jewell Cave, Yellowstone, and Grand Teton National Parks, Mount Rushmore National Memorial, and several national forests, monuments, and wildlife refuges plus visits to a western Dude Ranch (agro-tourism) and a variety of other local and regional tourism attractions. A variety of protected area management categories, governance types, and types and levels of tourism activities discussed will provide participants with unparalleled opportunities to learn about tourism planning and management approaches in protected areas and adjacent gateway communities.

For more information:

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US Government

Outdoor Recreation Planner (Student Trainees)

AGENCY: Bureau of Land Management
SALARY: $15.49 to $20.13 / Per Hour
SERIES & GRADE: GS-0099-05
LOCATION(S): 6 vacancies in the following locations: Boise, ID; Burley, ID; Challis, ID; Pocatello, ID;  Shoshone, ID
OPEN PERIOD: 1/3/2017 to 1/9/2017
POSITION INFO: Work Schedule is Full and/or Part Time based on student schedule and agency needs. - This is a Career/Indefinite Internship position.
WHO MAY APPLY: Enrolled or accepted students in a degree program

For more information:

Outdoor Recreation Planner

AGENCY: National Park Service
SALARY: $52,642.00 to $99,243.00 / Per Year
SERIES & GRADE: GS-0023-09/12
LOCATION(S): Lakewood, CO
OPEN PERIOD: 12/28/2016 to 1/6/2017
POSITION INFO: Full Time - Term NTE 13 months
WHO MAY APPLY: U.S. Citizens

For more information:

Project Specialist (Interdisciplinary)

AGENCY: National Park Service
SALARY: $52,642.00 to $99,243.00 / Per Year
SERIES & GRADE: GS-0020, 0101, 0401, 0807-09/12
LOCATION(S): Many vacancies in Lakewood, CO
OPEN PERIOD: 12/28/2016 to 1/6/2017
POSITION INFO: Full Time - Term NTE 13 months
WHO MAY APPLY: U.S. Citizens

For more information:

Natural Resource Specialist (Recent Graduate)

AGENCY: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
SALARY: $32,844.00 to $64,697.00 / Per Year
SERIES & GRADE: GS-0401-05/09
LOCATION(S): Clarks Hill, SC
OPEN PERIOD: 1/3/2017 to 1/17/2017
POSITION INFO: Full Time - Permanent
WHO MAY APPLY: Student/Internship Program Eligibles

For more information:

Social Scientist

AGENCY: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
SALARY: $63,691.00 to $99,243.00 / Per Year
SERIES & GRADE: GS-0101-11/12
LOCATION(S): Fort Collins, CO
OPEN PERIOD: 12/30/2016 to 1/6/2017
POSITION INFO: Full Time - Permanent
WHO MAY APPLY: U.S. Citizens

For more information:

Forestry Technician (Recreation)

AGENCY: U.S. Forest Service
SALARY: $17.54 / Per Hour
SERIES & GRADE: GS-0462-06
LOCATION(S): Jackson, WY
OPEN PERIOD: 1/4/2017 to 1/10/2017
POSITION INFO: Full-Time - Temporary
WHO MAY APPLY: U.S. Citizens

For more information:

Forestry Technician (Wilderness/Trails)

AGENCY: U.S. Forest Service
SALARY: $17.54 / Per Hour
SERIES & GRADE: GS-0462-06
OPEN PERIOD: 1/3/2017 to 1/9/2017
POSITION INFO: Full-Time - Temporary
WHO MAY APPLY: U.S. Citizens

For more information:
Minnesota: https://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/461046200/
Idaho and Montana: https://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/460514000/
Montana: https://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/460515200/

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Society of Outdoor Recreation Professionals
PO Box 221 | Marienville, PA 16239
(814) 927-8212