Ohio Legislative Trails Caucus Kicks Off 133rd General Assembly Activity
March 20, 2019
The Ohio Legislative Trails Caucus (OTLC) held its first meeting of the 133rd General Assembly today in Columbus. The bipartisan, bicameral group of state legislators is co-chaired by state Senator Sean J. O’Brien (D-Bazetta) and advocates for issues involving the development, maintenance and preservation of Ohio’s trails.
“Whether hiking, biking, horseback riding, kayaking or canoeing, chances are most Ohioans have spent time out on Ohio’s incredible trails system,” said Senator O’Brien. “The benefits of trails are countless and, with this caucus, we hope to make them even better and preserve them for the enjoyment of future generations.”
Planning and recruitment for the OLTC began during the 131st General Assembly when then-state Representative O’Brien was approached by members of several Ohio trails organizations, including the Buckeye Trails Association, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, Ohio Horseman’s Council and the Ohio Travel Association about the need for a coordinated effort to develop and maintain Ohio’s trails system. Since then, Senator Steve Wilson (R-Maineville) has become the caucus co-chair and the first-in-the-nation caucus boasts a membership of 38 Ohio lawmakers.
“With benefits that include increased public health, positive economic impact and alternative transportation options, it is vital that we do all we can to preserve and sustain our trails,” said Senator O’Brien.
Today’s meeting was attended by more than 60 trail advocates, including lawmakers, members of trails organizations and representatives of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Tourism Ohio and Ohio Development Services Agency. The group discussed upcoming events, including the Great American Rail-Trail Route event in Columbus on May 8. The event is part of an effort to connect more than 125 rail-trails, greenways and other paths across the US.