Posted By John Dorka,
Monday, March 18, 2013
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FORESTRY ASSOCIATION NEWS
MARCH 12, 2013
- 2013 OFA Annual Meeting - The 2013 OFA Annual Meeting is now history but
many who attended commented that it was a successful and welcome event.
This year marked a significant departure in meeting arrangements, with a change
from a weekend to weekday meeting, as well as other formatting changes.
Held on Wednesday and Thursday (March 6 and 7) at the Columbus Sheraton
Hotel on Capitol Square, the meeting featured a tour of the statehouse and
legislative reception the first day followed by a series of presentations about
the status of the hardwood forest products industry the following day.
100 people toured the Statehouse to learn about its history and a few famous
guests who have graced the halls. The group saw firsthand how historical
practice and modern technology mix to deal with state legal and policy issues
the tour, the group gathered in the Statehouse Museum area on the ground floor
to host our State Senators and Representatives who stopped by to hear about
issues important to the forest products industry and forestry representative in
attendance. Based on registrations, 50 elected officials, nearly
40% of the legislature, stopped by to talk, which is a very good
turn-out. OFA provided personalized, engraved, wooden name badges to each
of the elected officials, and it appears that all really enjoyed and
appreciated the tags. Badges were made for all senators and
representatives and those that were not able to attend will receive their
badges at first chance.
Thursday event featured a number of presentations to highlight the question "Is
the forest products industry poised for resurgence?” Presentations were
kicked-off by Kevin Thieneman, President, Caterpillar Forest Products
who reviewed key economic indicators for the forest products industry, during
which he characterized a strengthening economic picture in the next several
years, with key global economic indicators. Interestingly, he pointed out
that Caterpillar’s CEO was the first to predict the economic downtown in 2008
which proved to be on-the-mark. There were also presentations from Don
Taylor on behalf of the Wood Supply Research Institute (WSRI)
concerning results of nationwide research on Consumer-Supplier relationships
and recommendations to improve the working environment for contractors and wood
buyers and from Todd Martin, Executive Director of the Southern Loggers
Cooperative which recently opened up a fuel-supply depot in Chillicothe,
Ohio and the opportunities for forestry and agricultural businesses to purchase
below cost road and off-road diesel fuel at substantial savings. The
afternoon session included a presentation by Dr. Eric McConnell, OSU
Extension Forest Products Specialist on a snapshot of the "Ohio Forest
Economy” which involved his study using 2010 data to characterize the economic
impact of Ohio’s forest products industry. Presentations were completed
with a panel discussion from representative of various sectors of Ohio’s
hardwood industry. The panel representatives included: Ernest
Hershberger, owner of Homestead Furniture; Tony Honeycutt, Head of
Purchasing, Mullican Flooring; Gordon Kendrick, Head of Purchasing,
Rockland Hardwoods; Isaiah Harville, buyer, Woodcraft; and Larry
Evans, President, Industrial Timber and Lumber. All presented their
insight and comments on what is happening with their industry sector and their
"crystal ball” for the near future.
was an Awards Luncheon this year that combined the previous Tree Farm Awards
Luncheon with the Logger’s Supper presentations. The Ohio Logger of the
Year, the OFA Conservation Award winners as well as the Ohio Tree Farmer of the
Year were all recognized. The following were recognized as award winners:
Logger of the Year – Wood Logging (Chillicothe); John and Jeremy Wood
Individual in Conservation Education – Mike Besonen, Glatfelter
Logging Activist – Jason Good, Superior Hardwoods of Ohio.
Individual in Forest Industry – Steve Brown, Glatfelter
Ohio Tree Farmer of the Year – Dr. W. Joseph Lavelle, Stonewall Tree Farm,
OFA Board met at the beginning of the meeting. The Executive Committee
was approved and for 2013-2014 includes President Ryan Redoutey
(Redoutey Logging); 1st Vice-President Rob McCarthy (ITL); 2nd
Vice-President Ed Robbins (Ohio Valley Veneer); 3rd
Vice-President Jeff Hoselton (Glatfelter); Treasurer Dave Bergman
(retired) will continue in that position. At the awards luncheon, the
gavel was handed to new President Ryan Redoutey by outgoing President
Mark Cantwell (Cantwell Machinery).
- OFA wishes to recognize and thank the sponsors
who helped make this year’s meeting so successful. The sponsors include:
- Ames True Temper
- Brenneman Lumber Co.
- Columbus Equipment Co.
- eLimbs, LLC
- Hummel Group
- iIndustrial Timber and Lumber Co.
- Murphy Tractor and Equipment Co.
- Ohio Valley Veneer, Inc.
- Regions Timberland Group
- Sexton's Excavating
- Superior Hardwoods of Ohio
- Tiverton Timber Ltd.
- Yoder Lumber Co., Inc.
- Ohio Legislative News. At the
legislative reception, members has the chance to talk about a number of issues
important to the industry and forestry and included discussions on the value of
the forest products industry, timber trespass, trucking, support for the
Division of Forestry, and green building standards among others.
the trucking issue, it had been reported to the OFA Board prior to the
reception that the Ohio House had approved in the ODOT Budget Bill an increase
in commercial truck GVW from 80,000# to 90,000# on state highways. After
that action, OFA had been informed that there would be efforts in the Senate to
amend the bill to reflect the Coalition for Transportation Productivity’s
position on increasing GVW to 97,000# with a sixth axle. The OFA Board
had agreed to support that change and discussed such with Senators at the
reception. However, almost immediately, upon hearing that there may be
action in the Senate, interests opposed to increasing truck weights,
particularly among the railroads, jumped to action and began lobbying against
the proposal. In fact, it had been reported at the reception that there
were already radio ads by the time of the reception urging Senators not to make
changes to state truck weight laws for safety reasons. In addition, there
have been many contacts with Senators to the point that the Senate
Transportation Committee on Thursday immediately after the reception had
already decided to take the House amendment out of the bill. Committee
Chairwoman Gayle Manning (R-North Ridgeville) stated that the issue was much
too controversial and it should be dealt with separately. Those
testifying against the weight increase were a large group of public entities
including the County Engineers Association, Buckeye Sheriffs Association,
County Commissioners Association, Township Trustee Association, Ohio Municipal
League, Ohio Fire Chiefs Association, and the Ohio Association of Police
other news, the Ohio EPA is making a push to take over federal authority to
take primary control of the Clean Water Act programs in the state.
Currently authority is handled by the Corp of Engineers for such programs as
the "404” Clean Water Act Permits. OEPA Director Scott Nally told the
House Finance Agriculture and Development Subcommittee that the state taking
over the program would not lower the standards already in place. Further
he said that 70% of the 1,400 "404” permits issued each year in Ohio relate to
ODOT projects and that the state could be more responsive and efficient than
the Corps of Engineers.
Administrations Sales Tax Proposal has met considerable resistance from many
interests as the proposal has been debated in front of the House Ways and Means
Committee. However, a number of small businesses have voiced support for
the proposal as the package of tax changes shows benefits for small business
owners. Committee Chairman Ron Amstutz (R-Wooster) advises that in spite
of the opposition, he is not ready to give up on the sales tax proposal.
- OFA Logging Standards Council. The
Logging Standards Council met last week prior to the OFA Annual Meeting for its
quarterly program meeting. One of the key issues discussed was whether
the LSC should honor the invitation and become a member of the Wood Supply
Research Institute (WSRI). WSRI is the only national organization that
conducts forest industry research and focuses on issues that deal especially
with wood supply from the forests. The LSC agreed to join the WSRI for a
year to assess the benefits of being a member and will review continued
involvement at the end of the year of membership. WSRI was instrumental
in having Don Taylor participate in this year’s OFA Annual Meeting as a
- CSAW Level 1 Training, March 16, 2013, Maumee
- BMP Training for Master Loggers, April 4,
2013, Tappan Lake Park, Deersville, Ohio
- CSAW Level 1 Training, April 5, 2013, Tappan
Lake Park, Deersville, Ohio
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