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Timber Talk

Posted By Gayla Fleming, Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Forest Markets Weekly Newsletter
The National Association of State Foresters' Forest Markets Committee releases a Weekly Newsletter full of all things Forestry and Forest Products Industry related. Each week’s newsletter has articles about: Forest Markets, Housing, Working Forests, New Products and Technology, and Renewable Energy. This week’s newsletter contains several articles discussion recent trends in log an lumber prices.
Dovetail Partners June “Outlook” Newsletter
The June issue of Dovetail Partners “Outlook” newsletter discusses the amount of carbon dioxide withheld from the atmosphere by urban hardwood products. "The Outlook" is the monthly e-newsletter of Dovetail Partners, Inc, a 501c3 non-profit corporation.
Muskingum River Woodlands Interest Group (MRWIG) Newsletter
MRWIG has distributed their May/June 2018 newsletter. Read the newsletter to see their upcoming schedule and other news, which includes their upcoming Summer Woodland Walk on July 9th, and a recap of this year’s Morel Mushroom season.
WORK SAFE
The WORK SAFE article, reprinted from the June 2018 edition of the Northern Logger and Timber Processor magazine, gives example of injuries that happened in the woods, at the sawmill, and on the road, that could easily have been avoided. Possibly the best segment of this WORK SAFE is an article outlining tips from OSHA on Accident/Incident Investigation. I spent a lot of time in this arena in my past employ, and I can’t stress enough the importance of conducting a proper investigation to determine the ROOT CAUSE of the incident as opposed to the BLAME. For instance; a worker slips on ice walking into the sawmill, falls, and is injured and misses work for several days and has a Workers Compensation claim. A lot of people would blame the employee for not “being careful” (whatever that means). Or blame the custodial person for not putting ice melt or salt down to melt the ice in front of the doorway. Meanwhile, this is costing the owner money on several fronts; Workers Comp, overtime or lost production, potential for increased WC rates, etc. But did anybody do anything to keep this from happening again? Putting salt down on the ice is only a band-aid. A proper investigation would find the “root cause” which could turn out to be a clogged rain gutter over the doorway entrance to the sawmill, allowing water to overflow and freeze in front of the doorway. Finding and fixing this “root cause” is the most important thing you can do to keep these incidents from happening again.
OFA Issues & Advocacy Update
Following are some of the issues that we have been working on and/or tracking since our last update. 
 
Local
We continue to work with different counties in Ohio on road use issues. We are currently monitoring a lawsuit in one county between a logging company and a county engineers office. I also met again with the Trumbull County Engineers office concerning road use issues. We are also awaiting a response from another county concerning an invitation to engage in dialogue about their road use permitting program. 
 
Statewide
I have been asked to be part of the steering committee on the Ohio Smart Agriculture:Solutions from the Land project. This program centers around finding solutions for the growing demand for affordable and nutritious food, feed, fiber and energy, clean water in healthy watersheds, thriving wildlife habitats, and other ecosystem services.
I participated on a panel of industry experts at the OSU Extension Educators Retreat a few weeks ago. This was a great opportunity to talk about some of the issues facing our industry and how OSU Extension can assist.
I was recently the speaker at the Wood Components Manufacturing Association’s annual meeting. This was a great opportunity to advocate for OFA, the industry, the resource, and for better logging practices in NE Ohio.
OFA sent comments to the Wane National Forest supporting the Sunny Oaks Project.
OFA participated in a legislative reception with partner Ohio Aggregate & Industrial Minerals Association.
 
National
OFA has continued to work with the Forests in the Farm Bill Coalition. The Farm Bill passed in the U.S. House of Representatives this past week. We will now await the Senate. FRA President, Deb Hawkinson, summarizes the Farm Bill with the following: “The House bill includes a number of provisions favorable to the forestry/forest products value chain. The legislation would provide several new tools for the Forest Service to expedite forest management projects on federal land. Specifically, the bill authorizes a number of new “categorical exclusions” from environmental reviews that will facilitate needed project work. H.R. 2 also includes language from the Timber Innovation Act, which promotes the use of wood building products in taller structures. Finally, the legislation reauthorizes USDA’s BioPreferred program. This program includes both a federal purchase preference for biobased products (including forest products) as well as a voluntary product labeling program. The bill also includes provisions promoting biomass energy production. In the Senate, the upper chamber is expected to consider its own Farm Bill legislation next week.”

Another bill we have advocated for was the Ag Act. This act included language to increase the visas for seasonal agricultural workers such as those that populate many tree planting crews. This act was voted down last week, but some of these provisions will more than likely be debated later this summer when immigration reform is taken up.

OFA signed a letter of support for the Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program through the American Forest Foundation.
 
Miscellaneous
We continue to be active participants in many committees across the state that work on logging and forestry issues, including: Ohio Tree Farm Committee, Agricultural Advisory Committee to the Ohio Department of Taxation, Ohio Woodland Stewards, Ohio Forestry Advisory Committee, Ohio Forest Stewardship Program, Sustainable Forestry Initiative State Implementation Committee, and others.
 
If at any time you have a question about one of these subjects, or have other issues that you would like OFA to assist with, please do not hesitate to contact myself or someone else at the OFA office.
Brad Perkins – OFA Executive Director
Kentucky Forest Industry Association (KFIA) June 2018 Newsletter
For those interested to see some of the same, as well as different, issues that our forest industry members in neighboring Kentucky are dealing with, read the KFIA June newsletter. Thanks to former OFA president, Rob McCarthy for forwarding us this information.

2018 Summer Meeting
Plans have been finalized for the 2018 Summer Meeting. This year OFA will be joining forces with OSAF. The event will kick off on Tuesday, July 24 with your choice of 2 different tours at The WIlds followed by a reception and retirement celebration for John Dorka. On Wednesday, July 25 attendees can enjoy a day of golf or shooting sporting clays. The event will wrap up with an awards banquet and steak dinner. Click here for complete details and to register. 
  • Northwest Ohio Loggers Chapter Meeting - July 3 
  • Paint Valley Loggers Chapter Meeting - July 9 
  • Northwest Ohio Loggers Chapter Meeting - July 10 
  • A Day in the Woods - Tree and Shrub Identification - July 13 
  • East Central Ohio Loggers Chapter Meeting - July 16 
  • Steel Valley Loggers Chapter Meeting - July 19 
  • OFA/OSAF Summer Meeting - July 24-25

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