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Proposed Rule For Hardwood Lumber & Hardwood Plywood Promotion

Tuesday, November 26, 2013   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Gayla Fleming
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The USDA Agricultural Marketing Service has published a proposed rule for the Hardwood Lumber and Hardwood Plywood Promotion, Research and Information Order ("Hardwood Checkoff”). Click on the link to see the order. The purpose of publishing the proposal is to seek public comment. This order and proposal could affect hardwood lumber and plywood manufacturers above annual sales thresholds. Anyone can provide public comments on-line and can do so going to this site. Here is a brief description from the Hardwood Federation:

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has published the proposed rule for the Hardwood Lumber and Hardwood Plywood Promotion, Research and Information Order in the Federal Register (click link to view) on Nov. 13. The industry has 60 days to comment on the program designed to develop a promotion, education and research campaign funded by an assessment on hardwood lumber manufacturers and distributors, hardwood plywood manufacturers and hardwood flooring makers.

The Hardwood Checkoff, as it is commonly called, would be administered by a board of industry members selected by the Secretary of Agriculture. The program would be financed by an assessment on hardwood lumber, hardwood lumber products, hardwood lumber value-added products, and hardwood plywood manufacturers and would be administered by a board of industry members selected by the Secretary. The initial assessment rate would be: (1) $1.00 per $1,000 in sales of hardwood lumber and hardwood lumber products; (2) $0.75 per $1,000 in sales of hardwood lumber value-added products; and (3) $3.00 per $1,000 in sales of hardwood plywood. These assessments should generate about $10 million annually. The program would exempt those hardwood lumber manufacturers with annual sales of less than $2 million and hardwood plywood manufacturers with annual sales of less than $10 million.

The purpose of the program as stated in the order would be to strengthen the position of hardwood lumber and hardwood plywood in the marketplace and maintain and expand markets for hardwood lumber and hardwood plywood. A referendum would be held among eligible hardwood lumber manufacturers and hardwood plywood manufacturers to determine whether they favor implementation of the program prior to it going into effect.

The public has until Jan. 13, 2014 to view the order and make comments. Interested persons are invited to submit written comments concerning this proposal until January 13, 2014. Comments may be submitted on the Internet at: http://www.regulations.gov
Or in writing to the:
Promotion and Economics Division, Fruit and Vegetable Program, AMS, USDA,
1400 Independence Avenue SW., Room 1406-S, Stop 0244
Washington, DC 20250-0244
Or by fax: 202-205-2800


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