IHLA represents the interests of hardwood manufacturers, foresters, loggers, and landowners, both at the State Capitol and in Washington D.C. IHLA has a tremendous track record of successfully lobbying for pro-industry legislation, while leading to defeat harmful bills which would restrict timber supply and industry jobs. Within the last ten years, we have been responsible for:
- Indiana’s Right to Practice Forestry Act
- Exempting Logging Equipment from Gross Retail Sales Tax
- Additional Weight Limits for Forest Products Trucks
- Stricter Penalties for Timber Theft
- Re-classification of Forest Land as Agricultural vs. Excess Residential
- Preventing forest-dependent species from Endangered Species Listings
Often done without fanfare, our lobbying efforts are of utmost value to your business success. However, our real strength lies in helping our members build grass-roots relationships with their elected officials, linking policy makers with businesses back home in their districts.
Networking & Communications
When it comes to networking opportunities and making business happen, IHLA’s convention is second to none. With over 1,000 attendees, the annual late-winter extravaganza is the official kickoff to each new year and THE place to see everyone who’s anyone in the industry. In addition, our golf tournament, fishing tournament and Fun Shoot give members another way to connect and see friends and customers throughout the year.
Through email updates, website Newsfeed and quarterly newsletter, we keep our members up-to-date on important association and industry news. Need to find a person, product, or service? IHLA’s member directory is an easy tool to quickly find what you are looking for.
Education & Outreach
Education is a key component of IHLA’s ongoing mission. That includes both industry-specific employee training, and advancing our positive environmental message to the general public.
Our members can sharpen their skills and enhance their business through logger training, lumber grading and an ever-changing variety of other industry courses. We are also working to recruit and prepare the next generation, by spreading the word about opportunities in our industry, and working with partners such as Purdue University and the Indiana Department of Education to deliver training.
Billions of dollars are annually poured into anti-wood efforts, ignoring the positive environmental and economic advantages of using wood. We believe, and always will, that there is no better building material than wood, not only because of its genuine beauty and enduring value, but because it is the world’s most abundant and renewable natural resource. Through our scholarship program, Ball State University School of Architecture wood design competition and local school outreach efforts, we hope to educate today’s youth on the benefits of our sustainable product and provide opportunities for them to become more involved in our industry.
Good stewardship of the forest resources is the barometer in every decision we make or member service that we offer. This includes a great deal of time spent in making sure the resources are available, and our forests remain intact and available for responsible management. We are at the leading edge of dealing with forest health issues, such as diseases and invasive species.
We guide our members through the regulatory process of shipping hardwoods, and tirelessly oppose efforts to unnecessarily restrict harvesting. Our elected officials, as well as our opponents, know that we will vigorously and vigilantly defend our members’ right to practice responsible forestry, and to provide the world with a sustainable supply of quality wood products, not just so they can be in business, but because it’s the right thing to do. IHLA’s Forestry Council addresses all forest-related issues, and makes recommendations to the Board of Directors, as well as holds their own annual meeting in September.
The business insurance marketplace for hardwood manufacturing companies is changing as we speak. Carrier consolidation, record losses, lack of investment income, and depressed premium levels have led to major corrections in pricing, and outright policy cancellations for many of our member companies.
IHLA’s member-owned insurance agency offers the industry’s most experienced agent, whose customers know he will work tirelessly to find the right fit for their needs. Most companies only deal with insurance at renewal time, but understand its impact on the bottom line, and its importance in protecting their investment, employees and property.
We also partner with PLM/ILM on a members-only safety group program that returns dividends in those years when losses are kept to a minimum, and we have returned dividend every other year, on average. The dividend amounts often equal several years’ worth of IHLA’s annual dues, making IHLA membership even more valuable.