The Hardwood Federation produces a “D.C. Cheat Sheet” newsletter to keep the industry up-to-date on the latest news from Washington D.C. Check out the November 16th edition below and sign up to receive your copy.
Congress Approves One-Year Farm Bill Extension
As Congress finally passed a Continuing Resolution (CR) this week to fund federal programs beyond November 17 and into January, House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) got the ball rolling by working with 209 Democrats and 127 Republicans to secure its passage in the House on Tuesday. Speaker Johnson, eager to kill two birds with one stone, crafted a CR that piggybacks a one-year extension of the 2018 Farm Bill that will guarantee funding for key hardwood initiatives such as the Market Access and Foreign Market Development programs until September 30, 2024. The measure is headed to President Biden’s desk for his signature. The Hardwood Federation will keep you posted on new developments as they unfold.
Hardwoods, Small Business Allies Oppose Corporate Transparency Act Mandates
The small to medium sized business community is once again reaching out to Congress to delay implementation of the Corporate Transparency Act (CTA), a little-known federal anti-corruption law enacted in 2021 that takes effect in a little over a month and a half. The Hardwood Federation has signed on to a previous letter to House and Senate leadership asking for an implementation delay, but given the compliance date is just weeks away, the pressure is building. The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) sent a letter to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, the implementing federal entity at the Department of Treasury, on October 30 outlining its concerns with FinCen sticking with the statutory deadline for compliance. The issue is CTA’s multiple reporting requirements have not been well socialized. The Hardwood Federation has agreed to sign the letter, which will be sent to House and Senate leadership this week.
Forest Service Delivers Update on Mature, Old Growth Forests
On November 8, the Forest Service presented the findings of their threat assessment for mature and old growth forests (MOG), which identifies wildfires and pest infestation as the leading causes of old growth forest loss. The presentation follows the review of input received on USDA proposals this year related to climate resilient forests, on which the federation submitted comments this summer. Next steps include delivery of a report from USFS on threats to MOG during the winter of 2024 and development of a related conservation plan later next year. At this time, industry stakeholders are viewing the USFS findings as another justification for improving forest management to reduce wildfire and infestation risk.
Source: Hardwood Federation