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Hearth & Home June 2018

Protecting your interests

HPBA monitors government action at the state and federal level as well as codes and standards for potential threats and opportunities for the barbecue, solid fuel and gas hearth appliance industries. We do the hard work of tracking legislation and proposed regulations and shepherding grassroots campaigns to influence these actions. As an HPBA member, we reach out to you directly when we spot developments that are of concern and need your input. We need the power of our members to effect change.

Your members of Congress want to hear from you, their constituent. There are many stories about money in politics, but the people who truly have the ear of Congress are the voters. Our members support the local economies. They may be manufacturers or retailers, but they all employ voters and provide a valued product or service to the community (more voters). We help our members reach out to their Representatives and Senators to tell their story.

It is crucial for our members to reach out to their elected officials. It takes only one email to a legislative office to give a legislator a reason to sponsor or cosponsor a bill.

We make it easy for our members! When an issue urgently needs your attention, we’ll send you an action alert message. To send an email without viewing or making edits, simply click the “Send Letter to Legislator(s)” button. To make edits to add details such as how many people you employ, how long you’ve been in business, and your company’s history, click on the “Preview/Edit” button. If you choose to make edits, below we walk you through the 10-second process to edit and send your message.

Our members have made a difference at both the state and federal levels. At the state level, we mobilized our team in December 2014 when the Utah Department of Environmental Quality proposed banning all residential woodburning between the months of November and March in Salt Lake City and six surrounding counties. This draconian proposal was a major threat to our members and customers. Thousands of grassroots supporters, including HPBA members and concerned consumers, crowded public hearings and signed petitions in opposition. Ultimately, the proposal was defeated and legislation was enacted by the state legislature that would prevent the state from imposing any woodburning ban in the future. Our active government affairs work makes this possible, as we monitor and react when needed.

Step 1

Step 2

Step 3

More recently, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation that would delay the implementation of Step 2 of NSPS until 2023. It’s a major victory to get this legislation through the House, but the battle continues in the Senate. Our members are helping us today as we try to line up Senate cosponsors among the states with particular interest in woodburning appliances. When you see an action alert email from us, asking you to send an email to your Senators, we really need your help!

Does all this talk of government affairs and grassroots lobbying make you wonder how to get even more involved? Every two years, HPBA holds its Tom Pugh Government Affairs Academy (GAA). This is an in-depth, three-day training workshop on how to testify before a political committee or hearing, how local, state, and federal government relations functions, and prepares you for being an advocate for the hearth industry. The event concludes with a full day of meetings on Capitol Hill, putting all that you’ve learned to the test. This academy will give you the knowledge and experience to walk into any politician’s office and argue the merits of your position in an effective manner. Our state efforts in Utah were led by one of our 2014 GAA graduates, Randy Toupin, who remains involved in advocacy efforts today. This members-only opportunity is quickly approaching, taking place in Washington, DC July 16-19, 2018! Contact your affiliate executive director if you are interested in attending. Learn more about GAA on our website, www.hpba.org.

If you’re not a member of HPBA or one of our affiliates, learn more about the benefits of membership and why you should join.


The HPBA Journal is intended to provide in-depth information to the hearth and outdoor products industries. Statements of fact and opinion are the responsibility of the authors alone and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the officers, board, staff or members of the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association.

Copyright ©2018 by the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission of the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association is prohibited. Direct requests for permission to use material published in the HPBA Journal to media@hpba.org.

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