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Weekly News 3.26.12

Posted By John Dorka, Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Weekly News 3.26.12

  • 2012 OFA Annual Meeting Wrap-Up. The Annual Meeting is now a "wrap” and from all vantages, it appeared to be very successful. I hope that all who attended feel that it was worthwhile. We changed things up with the location this year and traveled to the heart of Columbus at the Crowne Plaza Hotel across from the Convention Center. Following the OFA Board meeting on Friday, a large group of nearly 90 attendees traveled to the OSU Thompson Library to view first hand the library renovation that included the beautiful addition of a significant amount of white oak wood panels and moldings that came from Ohio State Forests through Superior Hardwoods of Ohio, Inc. The tour was followed up a reception sponsored by Industrial Timber and Lumber, after which more than 50 participants watched the Columbus Blue Jackets play a solid game and beat the Carolina Hurricanes 5-1. The Saturday meeting featured a number of speakers discussing "Shale Formation Drilling – What is the Impact on Ohio Forestry?” There were a number of excellent presentations for a packed meeting room of attendees. The Tree Farm Awards Luncheon celebrated the 2012 Ohio Tree Farm of the Year, jointly owned by Wayne and Benita Lashbrook and their daughter and son-in-law Rita and Brad Franchi. Following the Logger’s Supper, the 2012 Logger of the Year and the Outstanding Individuals in Conservation were recognized. The awardees included:
    1. 2012 Logger of the Year - L.A. Horn Logging and Landclearing
    2. Outstanding Individuals in Conservation Education – Walt and Donna Lange, Tree Farmers
    3. Outstanding Individual in Public Service – Greg Guess, ODNR Division of Forestry
    4. Outstanding Individual in Industry – Chuck Beach, Weyerhaeuser
    5. Outstanding Logging Activist – Bob Mulligan, ODNR Division of Soil and Water Resources

Also recognized were two outstanding contributions to the OFA Foundation Memorial Scholarship Program in 2011. The Wood Industry for a Sustainable Environment (WISE), an educational non-profit organized in the late 1990s, donated its $38,000 fund balance to the Memorial Scholarship last year before the group was disbanded. Emmett Conway and Dick Harwood, former WISE Board Members, presented the donation. In addition, the Harris Willis Trust Fund had designated the Memorial Scholarship as a 25% beneficiary of the trust fund. Following the passing of long-time member and former OFA Board member and President Harris Willis, $18,664.92 was donated to the OFA Scholarship Program. Following the awards, John Brock who has written an inspirational book and had a movie made about her life of blindness, provided an inspirational presentation for the benefit of us all as we closed out this year’s annual meeting.

OFA wishes to thank all those companies who sponsored some portion of the OFA Annual Meeting. Sponsorships were provided by:

    1. Cantwell Machinery Co.
    2. Glatfelter
    3. Hummel Group, Inc.
    4. Industrial Timber and Lumber
    5. Murphy Tractor and Equipment Co.
    6. Ohio Valley Veneer
    7. Ray H. Miller Logging dba McKay Hardwoods
    8. S&J Lumber
    9. Scioto Land
    10. Superior Hardwoods of Ohio, Inc.
    11. Yoder Lumber Co., Inc.
  • Steve Brown Injury Update. Reports are that Steve Brown is progressing well from injuries he sustained in his untimely accident at his home on March 14. Following surgery on his back at OSU Hospital, Steve was moved to Dodd Hall and began therapy on March 24. Steve’s wife Linda reports that Steve is progressing as well as can be expected. He is still unable to take visitors and because he is located in a very small room in Dodd Hall, the best way to wish him well is with a card that can be mailed to his home address at 331 Cooks Hill Rd., Chillicothe, OH 45601.
  • Clean Water Act Supreme Court Decision, Sackett vs. EPA, No. 10-1062. I thought you might be interested in seeing a recent Supreme Court Decision regarding another Clean Water Act issue, involving more of the fuzzy understanding of what constitutes "waters of the US” under the Clean Water Act. In this case, a landowner, the Sacketts, had action taken against them by the US EPA for filling a small area of "wetlands” on their property without first getting a permit. The action is more complicated in that it involves other issues, including the timing of enforcement and when the Sacketts may file. The bottom line is that in the decision, the Supreme Court justices commented about the "notoriously unclear” Clean Water Act and that Congress has never done in 40 years what it should have done when the law was passed. That is, it should clarify the reach of the Clean Water Act by defining what "waters” are in fact regulated under the law. In addition, EPA has never filed rules to define "waters of the US” and instead has persistently relied on "informal guidance.” This decision adds substance to the issue regarding EPA regulation of logging roads under the CWA, which may ultimately require NPDES permits.
  • OSU Management Leadership Series – "Roaring Out of the Recession – Business Strategies for the Road Ahead.” The OSU Business Development Network is hosting a live-streamed discussion conducted by Ken Schmidt who helped transform Harley-Davidson into a world leading market brand from a company that was nearly bankrupt. The workshop will take place on April 26 from 8:30 – 11:00 AM and can be viewed at a number of locations around the state including OSU South Centers in Piketon, Sinclair Community College in Dayton, Southeastern Ohio Port Authority in Marietta, Kent State University in New Philadelphia, Columbus State Community College in Columbus, North Central State College in Mansfield, Techsolve in Cincinnati, and Zane State Campus Center (Room 432) in Zanesville.. The workshop is free but you need to pre-register for a specific location through this website.
  • NC Logging Operator Training Program. The North Carolina Association of Professional Loggers, in cooperation with Pitt Community College in Greenville, NC, has developed a 16-week Logging Equipment Operator Training Program that provides hands-on practical and technical training in a wide variety of logging equipment including skidders, fellerbunchers, log loaders and crawlers on real logging operations. You can find more information on the NCAPL website.
  • News About "Wooden” Skyscrapers. Here is an interesting story about architects who are looking at wood construction for building high-rise sky scrapers as a more economical and effective approach to construction. It is good to see the article shown as "eco solutions”, a view point that those in forestry and the forest products industry have long held about wood as a truly environmentally friendly product.
  • Wood Promotion Video from the Danish Wood Initiative. Although it was developed in Denmark, this short, YouTube posted video is pertinent to wood products any where in the world, and has a valuable message for American viewers. It is very well done and has a great message to tell.

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