For immediate release
March 01, 2012
Contact: Sheila Franklin
Congressman Michaud Receives Special Recognition Award
American Hiking Society Honors his Efforts to Protect Trails
Silver Spring, MD–The American Hiking Society (AHS) presented Congressman Mike Michaud (ME-2nd) with a special recognition award at their 15th annual Hike the Hill® Congressional Trails Caucus Reception. The award recognizes Mr. Michaud for his extraordinary effort to insure that the Recreational Trails Program (RTP) was included in the recent House Transportation Bill. RTP is a twenty year old program administered by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) that provides funds to the states (on a matching basis) for development and maintenance of recreational trails and their related facilities. The program is funded through a portion of the motor fuel tax applied to non-highway recreational fuel use such as all-terrain vehicles, off highway motorcycles, snowmobiles, etc.
“American Hiking Society is proud to recognize Congressman Mike Michaud’s courageous bi-partisan efforts to protect the Recreation Trails Program in the current Transportation bill,” noted Gregory Miller, President of American Hiking Society. “From our country’s grand national parks to recreation areas in the 2nd District of Maine, getting out on trails in the great outdoors remains a bedrock American value and provides an important part of living an active and healthy lifestyle. Rep. Michaud’s unwavering commitment to protecting trails funding will ensure that youth and families will continue to have safe access to trails and local outdoor recreation opportunities.”
Mr.Michaud, along with his colleague, Congressman Tom Petri (WI-6th) drafted and submitted a bi-partisan letter that was signed by 74 of their colleagues, to the House Transportation and Infrastructure (T&I) Committee urging it to support the inclusion of the highly successful Recreational Trails Program (RTP) in the transportation reauthorization bill. Their effort resulted in the program being included and with level funding authorization which is a major victory for the trails community across the nation.
“This is a program that’s been used successfully in Maine for years,” said Michaud, a member of the T&I Committee. “It’s helped build bridges in Millinocket, Bingham, Houlton, and Andover. It’s also provided funding for improvements to trails in every corner of our state. Maine has used this program very effectively, and I’ll continue to build support for it moving forward.”
The nation’s trails offer Americans boundless opportunities to enjoy nature, renew themselves and establish a lifetime of fitness. It is policy efforts like Mr. Michaud’s that will ensure these natural places are cherished and preserved today for tomorrow’s generations.