Wood Products Manufacturers Association https://www.wpma.org Wood Products Manufacturers Association Wood Products Manufacturers Association It's A Bird, It's A Plane.......It's OSHA https://www.wpma.org/pages/news/entry/89 Mon, 03 Jun 2019 08:33:26 EST https://www.wpma.org/pages/news/entry/89 <p>On May 18, 2018 OSHA issued an internal memorandum to its regional administrators directing the procedures for the use of "drones" during health and safety inspections. They have reportedly been used so far on nearly a dozen worksite inspections. In order to protect yourself from unauthorized searches in violation of the Fourth Amendment, it is important to know the do's and don'ts&nbsp; for OSHA when attempting to conduct surveillance of your worksite.</p> <p>Normally, even without a warrant, you can limit the scope of an OSHA inspection depending upon the type:&nbsp; a hazard complaint based inspection typically only allows OSHA to look at the equipment or area of issue.&nbsp; However, even during a limited scope inspection, if OSHA observes a violation in "plain view," that justifies them expanding the scope of the inspection.So if a drone is used, it makes a larger portion of your worksite available to them.</p> <p>OSHA also cooperates with the EPA, so if the drone captures something in the environmental area that is improper, they can share the video and trigger an EPA visit.</p> <p>It is wise to educate your supervisors and workers now, so that if an OSHA team shows up, everyone will know their rights.</p> <p>Source:&nbsp; Pallet Central Magazine and our friends at the National Wood Pallet and Container Association. The author, Adele L. Abrams is an attorney and safety professional who represents companies in litigation with OSHA.&nbsp; She can be reached at 301/595-3520 or <a href="http://www.safety-law.com">www.safety-law.com</a>.</p> <p>Since 1929 the WPMA has focused on providing our members with timely information to help them remain competitive in the global economy.</p> <p>For more information you may contact Philip Bibeau, Executive Director at 978/874-5445.</p> Is the economy helping to raise you business insurance rates? https://www.wpma.org/pages/news/entry/88 Mon, 06 May 2019 08:38:50 EST https://www.wpma.org/pages/news/entry/88 <p>We have received a number of calls from members asking why they are being quoted such high rates when their business insurance renews?</p> <p>The answer is partially due to the good economy we have been experiencing.&nbsp; With an aging population and a low unemployment rate, businesses are finding it more than difficult to hire quality employees, especially truck drivers.</p> <p>Many people say they have used the mirror test to hire someone.&nbsp; They hold a mirror under their nose and if it fogs up, they hire the driver.</p> <p>The result has been a HUGE increase in the number of commercial auto accidents.&nbsp; Often the driver is on their cell phone, or is a distracted driver that causes an accident.&nbsp; The bottom line is that all insurance carriers have "taken a bath" and incurred large losses that highly exceed all income or projections for the year.&nbsp; The result is that many companies are experiencing up to a 400% increase in prices quoted (if they receive a quote at all.)&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>If your company is fortunate enough to receive a quote, the increase must be charged against&nbsp; your bottom line.&nbsp; With the economy leaving a lot to be desired, it will make it even harder for a well run company to make a profit in 2019.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>We urge everyone to please pay attention to who you hire and how they operate your vehicles.&nbsp; Remember, if everyone does their job, we can help companies increase their bottom line.</p> <p>Since 1929 the WPMA has focused on helping our members remain competitive and profitable in the global economy.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>For more information on how we can help you and your business we urge you to contact Philip Bibeau, Executive Director at 978/874-5445.</p> Notice of Proposed Rule Making: Overtime Update https://www.wpma.org/pages/news/entry/87 Mon, 01 Apr 2019 08:45:19 EST https://www.wpma.org/pages/news/entry/87 <p>On March 7, 2019 the Department of Labor announced a proposed rule that would make more than a million more American workers eligible for overtime.&nbsp; The question to start asking yourself and your managers is "how will this rule affect our business?"</p> <p>Under currently enforced law, employees with a salary below $455 per week ($23,660 annually) must be paid overtime if they work more than 40 hours per week.&nbsp; Workers making at least this salary level may be eligible for overtime based on their job duties. This salary level was set in 2004.</p> <p>This proposal that is expected to be passed into law would boost the proposed salary level to $679 per week (equivalent to $35,308 per year.) Above this salary level, eligibility for overtime varies based on job duties.</p> <p>The proposal increases the total annual compensation requirement for "highly compensated employees" (HCE) from the currently enforced level of $100,000 to $147,414 per year.</p> <p>A commitment to periodic review to update the salary threshold as well as a requirement for notice and comment periods for the rule would be mandated.</p> <p>The proposal would allow employers to use nondiscretionary bonuses and incentive payments (including commissions) that are paid annually or more frequently to satisfy up to 10% of the standard salary level.</p> <p>There were no changes in overtime protections for:</p> <p>-Laborers including; non-management production-line employees.</p> <p>- Non-management employees in maintenance, construction and similar occupations such as carpenters, electricians, mechanics, plumbers, iron workers, craftsmen, operating engineers and construction workers.&nbsp; These employees must continue to be paid for overtime as established in the law that went into affect in 2004.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>Source:&nbsp; Callie Haman, National Association of Manufacturers</p> <p>The question all owners must be asking their managers are there ways to ensure the company is not accruing any unnecessary overtime and can anything be done to reduce your exposure as this will definitely affect the company's bottom line?</p> <p>Since 1929 the WPMA has always prided itself on providing it's members with timely information that helps a company remain competitive in the global marketplace.</p> <p>For more information, you may contact Philip Bibeau, Executive Director at 978/874-5445.</p> What Are You Doing Today To Increase Business in 2020? https://www.wpma.org/pages/news/entry/86 Mon, 04 Mar 2019 08:24:24 EST https://www.wpma.org/pages/news/entry/86 <p>Based on a large volume of member calls and attendance at a number of shows, the consensus is that business is not as strong as people would like and many business owners have said their companies have "excess manufacturing capacity."&nbsp; In other words, people can use more business.</p> <p>When you speak to many people and ask them what they are doing today to generate new orders in 2020 they look at you like you are from another planet.&nbsp; When business is good people forget the importance of following up to stay in touch with your current customers to ensure that you and your company remain a "partner" in their success as a critical supplier.</p> <p>The other thing that people forget is the fact that it often takes more than a full year to convert a company that is a prospect to a customer.&nbsp; By waiting till the last minute before you lay people off (due to lack of work) to find new orders you are making a big mistake.&nbsp; As more and more manufacturers learn the key to success involves working even closer with their suppliers, it gets harder and harder to get your foot in the door to prove that your company may in fact do a better job for them.</p> <p>To help companies develop new and profitable business the WPMA has been advertising for inquiries and acting as a clearing house to connect manufacturers with new customers since 1929.&nbsp; We continue to exhibit at national trade shows seeking inquiries that we can pass along to our members.&nbsp; Many of our members will refer a prospective customer to the WPMA office to help them locate a supplier if it is not something they are able to produce.</p> <p>Since 1929 the focus of WPMA has always been to provide programs and services to help members compete in the global economy.</p> <p>For more information on how WPMA can help you and your company please contact Philip Bibeau, Executive Director at 978/874-5445.</p> Tariffs - What Will They Do To Your Business???? https://www.wpma.org/pages/news/entry/85 Mon, 04 Feb 2019 09:38:08 EST https://www.wpma.org/pages/news/entry/85 <p>We have received many calls from members talking about the affects that proposed tariffs if enacted will have on their business.&nbsp; We are hearing from many log/lumber suppliers that have explained that over 50% of their sales are now destined for Asia.&nbsp; They have explained how their business will be devastated if the tariffs take affect and the layoffs it will cause.</p> <p>As is the case in a free market economy companies are allowed and encouraged to sell their products where they can make the most amount of money and best benefit their company.&nbsp; In speaking with many owners they explain that most of their new sales to Asia have occurred in the last 5-7 years.&nbsp; We have been told "the prices are so good I couldn't afford to ship the item to old customers in the States."&nbsp; Many have told us that they believed foreign governments were subsidizing the purchase of raw materials which drove the prices so high, but they didn't care as long as they were getting paid.</p> <p>Once the government applied partial duties and things slowed down, the game changed.&nbsp; Now material was backing up and prices were dropping as the only customers were located in the US and Europe.&nbsp; Businesses are being forced to re-connect with old domestic customers and develop long neglected sales.&nbsp; End users are telling us that their calls are being answered again.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>One of the "benefits" of the tariff threat is the fact that companies must again work to expand their customer base to include both domestic and export customers.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>Since 1929 the WPMA has been working with members to help them increase sales and remain profitable in a global economy.&nbsp; We continue to distribute leads for new business to our members.</p> <p>For more information please call Philip Bibeau, Executive Director at 978/874-5445.</p>