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ARVCIn an effort to strengthen industry unity and with a goal to bring all state associations together in harmony with the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC) for the benefit of the entire industry, ARVC today (Oct. 12) announced a new partnership model that breaks down nearly all barriers for state association participation, according to ARVC officials.

“ARVC is focused on industry unity for the betterment of all. If the pandemic taught us anything, it was that we can accomplish so much more for our industry when we are unified for our members,” explained ARVC President and CEO Paul Bambei. “Throughout 2020 and 2021, we found, and we proved, that when we work together for the common good of the industry, positive things happen. This wave will continue and this new partnership model is the catalyst that will make greater industry unity possible.”

In the past, the largest barrier for state associations looking to join forces with ARVC was the point of entry — ARVC required a minimum of 50% of a state’s members to also join ARVC in order to be considered a partnering state. Under this new model, that barrier is removed, and state associations will now be able to partner with the national association with as little as 1% of membership.

“Our goal in doing this is to make it easy for state associations to become partners at any level so together we can make a difference for our members at both the state and national levels,” said Bambei. “We can accomplish this in so many ways — the biggest of which is government advocacy.”

By year’s end, the ARVC public affairs team will have reviewed more than 15,000 pieces of legislation that could affect our industry nationally and at the state level, stated ARV C officials. Unifying on these issues ultimately strengthens our ability as industry associations to fight for our members, notes Jeff Sims, ARVC’s senior director of state relations and program advocacy.

“When we work together on issues at the state and national level, good things happen for everyone in our industry,” said Sims, “but that effort is made easier when we can all show up to the same table in front of legislators with a unified voice.”

Recent examples of legislative success born out of the partnership between ARVC and state associations can be seen in Missouri and Indiana. In Missouri, ARVC partnered with the Missouri Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (MOARC) in the successful introduction and passage of House Bill 369, an Inherent Risk Bill, which was signed into law in July by Gov. Mike Parson. This new law specifically offers owners, operators and employees of campgrounds and RV parks protection from frivolous lawsuits when an injury or death occurs as a result of an inherent risk of camping.

Paul Bambei

Paul Bambei

In Indiana, the Indiana Manufactured Housing Association-Recreational Vehicle Industry Council (IMHA-RVIC) partnered with ARVC and enlisted the help of Jeff Sims to craft language for what is now the new Indiana Campground Law. Dubbed the “Guest Ejection Law,” this groundbreaking law, signed by Gov. Eric Holcomb in April, allows the removal of unruly campers from privately owned campgrounds in certain instances. The law specifies that an individual who remains on or returns to a campground after having been asked to leave the campground commits criminal trespass.

In these instances, positive outcomes were possible because of the unified voice created through partnership, stated ARVC officials.

On a national level, ARVC continues to lobby in Washington for lower taxes for small businesses, and the classification of our industry as an “essential business” so our member businesses can remain open and help their local communities during the next pandemic or natural disaster.

RV parks, resorts, campgrounds and glamping businesses across the country are impacted by our state, local and national governments every day — and ARVC sees its role as the national association to bring all associations together to help improve situations for all our member, noted ARVC.

This type of change is aided by numbers — the larger the industry, the louder the voice. Because of this, ARVC is also focused on the value all campgrounds across the country receive by being members of both their national and state associations.

“As we’ve said, our first goal is unity because, without a unified industry, outcomes like what we’ve seen in Missouri and Indiana are much more difficult to come by. We need to come together to educate the people in our communities who are making laws and decisions that affect our members,” said Bambei. “The best way to do that is to come together with one common goal and one voice. When we grow together and amplify our voice, everyone wins.”

For more information on this new partnership model, contact Jeff Sims at [email protected] or by calling 303-681-0401 x110.