Posted By Joh Dorka,
Tuesday, February 07, 2012
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Weekly News 2.6.12
- Truck Weight Reform – Congressional Action. This past week the House Transportation and
Infrastructure Committee began mark-up on the Federal Highway
Reauthorization Bill. Of particular interest to OFA and the forest
products industry was whether HR 763 (The Safe and Efficient
Transportation Act) which deals with commercial truck weight reform would
get included in the bill. It was offered as an amendment and the
committee had to vote to include it. In spite of furious efforts in
the days leading up to the committee hearing by CTP and AgHaul to contact
Congressional reps on the committee to support the amendment, the
amendment was voted down. Congressman Bob Gibbs (OH-18) and
Congresswoman Jean Schmidt (OH-2) are Ohio members on the Transportation and
Infrastructure Committee and both voted in favor of the amendment.
This truck weight issue has been highly charged since it first was brought
forward and there are many interests on both sides who worked either for
or against it. As an indication of the various concerns with the
issue, here is an article
from the Dayton Daily News.
- Thousand Cankers Disease (TCD) of Walnut. Last week, the Ohio Department of Agriculture
(ODA) hosted a conference call with OFA and DOF on pending quarantine
actions to address TCD in Ohio.
Staff from Ohio Valley Veneer and Hartzell Hardwoods participated on
the call. TCD has been confirmed in Tennessee,
Virginia and Pennsylvania, and ODA is now
considering implementing an exterior quarantine on walnut products.
The discussion focused on how a quarantine could be implemented without
causing an undue burden on the industry and movement of walnut wood
products. ODA advised that a quarantine is not imminent, but wanted
to prepare in case TCD in Ohio
is confirmed following survey work this summer. Based on current
practices at walnut facilities in Ohio,
both manufacturers felt that a quarantine could be satisfactorily managed
- OFA Timber Theft Task Force. With the recent newspaper articles about timber
theft activities, OFA convened the task force that had reviewed the issue
a couple years ago. The task force discussed the current activities
and recommended an OFA position, particularly if legislative interest
peaks. The position is by and large the same as that developed a couple
years ago in which promoting "due diligence” should be the guiding
principles for any policy, administrative, or legislative effort.
- Economic Cost of Boiler MACT Rules. Here is a summary of the Economic Impact of the 2011
Proposed EPA rules on Boiler MACT (Maximum Achievable Control Technology)
on a state by state basis. It was prepared by the Council of
Industrial Boiler Owners. It lists by state the number of industrial
boilers, the estimated cost of implementing the rules, and an estimate of
the number of jobs lost due to the rules. Of the 50 states, Ohio was rated
number two based on costs and job losses. According to the
estimates, the Ohio’s
forest products industry has approximately 10% of the industrial boilers
and will feel a significant part of the impact.
- Canada Implements Phytosanitation Requirements on Asian
Longhorned Beetle (ALB)-affected Wood Products from Ohio.
There had been no announcement from APHIS or ODA to Ohio
manufacturers shipping wood products to Canada,
but effective February 1, 2012 specific wood products of species
susceptible to Asian Longhorned Beetle will have to have phytosanitary
certificates before Canada
will allow them to be shipped across the border. At least one Ohio manufacturer
learned this the hard way over the weekend when a truck load of maple was
stopped at the Canadian border and refused entry because there was no
certificate on the wood. Here is a copy of the Canadian
Phytosanitary Requirements for wood products from tree species susceptible
- Ohio EPA Pulls Proposed Rules for Streams. During a public hearing last week on proposed water
quality rules that have been pending since 2006, Director Nally said
he had decided to reroute the regulations from consideration by Joint
Committee on Agency Rule Review to undergo analysis for potential impact
to businesses, per the Common Sense Initiative (CSI) implemented by the
Kasich administration a year ago. Some business groups including the
Ohio Chamber of Commerce and Ohio Manufacturers Association had urged a
CSI review before the updated rules, which have been reviewed since 2006,
went into effect. Here is a Columbus Dispatch article
discussing the action by EPA. In
- DOF Invitation to Bid for State Forest
Timber Marking. The Division of Forestry
has put out another Invitation to Bid for timber marking services at Shawnee State Forest.
This contract will involve timber marking on 114 acres with an estimated
790,000 BF of standing timber. The marking is for deferment and
clearcut harvests. Bid opening will take place on February 16, 2012
at 12 PM. The contract runs through 8/30/2012. See this document for more information. DOF advises this is probably the last
timber marking offer for a number of months.
- Potential Ohio
Fumigation Services. I
received an inquiry last week from an interested person in Cincinnati who is
considering offering fumigation services for wood manufacturers and
exporters. He currently has a fumigation service in the area but is
considering expanding it for the wood industry. OFA provided him a
couple names of individuals to talk to about needs for services, but he
welcomes the opportunity to talk to more manufacturers who have fumigation
requirements. If you are interested, you can contact Dave Schooler
at 513-260-4111 and firstname.lastname@example.org.
- SFI in Brief.
Here is a link
to the January-February 2012 SFI Newsletter on things that are going on
with the Sustainable Forestry Initiative. Included are summaries on
conservation grants available through SFI, SFI support for Aboriginal
interests, the new UL Environment 880 standard which recognizes SFI and
forest certification, an increase in the number of major companies
requesting the SFI brand, and how SFI is helping architects and builders
learn more about certification.
- 2012 OFA Annual Meeting. Meeting plans are coming together. This
should be a great time to learn a little about what shale drilling means
to forestry in Ohio.
A couple notes on the plans:
- OWIN Tour of OSU Thompson Library. This should be a wonderful tour of the library
and the major renovation that took place in the last several years, one
that involves the use of high quality oak from Ohio
supplied by Ohio
manufacturers. Access to the library is very limited, and attendees
not with the bus tour may have difficulty participating. Make sure
to register early for the tour!
- Columbus Blue Jackets (CBJ) Hockey Game. The CBJ is offering a great price on a block
of tickets to a hockey game with the Carolina Hurricanes. The
ticket price ($34) includes food, drinks, and a souvenir hat. The number
of tickets is limited so register early!
- Tree Farm Auction.
The Ohio Tree Farm Committee will host its traditional silent auction at
the annual meeting. The committee will graciously accept donations
for auction items. You can simply bring items to the meeting for
contribution to the auction. If necessary you can contact Walt and
Donna Lange (419-825-5792) for special needs or arrangements.
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