Crossties

NOV-DEC 2017

Crossties is published for users and producers of treated wood crossties.

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CONTACT RTA WEBSITE BECOME A MEMBER BECOME A MEMBER RTA WEBSITE CONTACT Cahaba Pressure Treated Forest Products Eagle Metal Products East Coast Railroad Gross & Janes Co. Hurdle Machine Works Koppers Inc. CROSSTIES • NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2017 10 SAWMILL FOCUS n Aug. 18, longtime USFS Chief Tom Tidwell announced his retirement in September after more than four decades at the agency. This news was quickly followed with the placement of Tony Tooke as incoming chief. Tooke was most recently the regional for- ester in Region 8 (the Southern Region) and has been a career employee of the Forest Service, beginning when he was just 18 years old. His career has mostly kept him in Region 8 and the Washington Office, so he is extremely well versed in USFS activity on the ground and in the Halls. In his new post, Tooke will likely be tasked with helping USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue expand timber production in national forests. In a welcome statement, Perdue said Tooke will "oversee efforts to get our for- ests working again, to make them more pro- ductive, and to create more jobs. His focus will be on ensuring we are good neighbors and are managing our forests effectively, efficiently, and responsibly, as well as work- ing with states and local governments to ensure the utmost collaboration." In November, Pat Rita of the Hardwood Federation staff and I met with Chief Tooke. The meeting was very encouraging on a number of fronts. The chief is clearly com- mitted to delivering more board feet of tim- ber off of our federal forest landholdings. He indicated that board feet production is trending upward in every region of the country and the USFS is committed to pro- ducing 3.4 billion board feet (BBF) off fed- eral forests in 2018, with a goal of getting to 4 BBF by 2020. He went on to say that more timber has been sold over the last 24 months off the federal forests than at any time over the last 20 years. We highlighted for the chief that the Hardwood Federation seeks to bring a national face to the forest fire/federal forest management issue, as many of our opera- tions are east of the Mississippi and fire, insect infestation and disease are all threats to federal forests in the east and the Lake States. Tooke agreed that this is a national issue, not one confined to the Western states. He remains optimistic that federal forest reform legislation will get enacted this year and we are committed to working aggressively with his lobbying team and our champions in the House and Senate to help make that outcome a reality. Tooke was also very well versed on the issue of cross-laminted timber (CLT) and the potential opportunities for the hardwood industry. He understands the importance of markets and market development and obvi- ously CLT and other innovative wood prod- uct applications are key to this goal. The bottom line is the new chief is very familiar with our products and our industry, and the Hardwood Federation is looking forward to working with him to advance policies that both benefit our sector and are beneficial to rural America. The Senate confirmed Ted McKinney, the former director of the Indiana State Depart- ment of Agriculture, as the Undersecretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs at USDA. McKinney has pledged to work closely with U.S Trade Ambassador Lighthizer and the Trade Council to ensure that farmers and ranchers are protected in the renegotiation of NAFTA and in any new or revised free trade deals. The Senate also confirmed Stephen Cen- sky as the Deputy Secretary of Agriculture. Censky will work to focus USDA on critical issues, like the expansion of trade agree- ments to benefit U.S. agricultural exports, the importance of crop insurance to farmers, and the impacts of climate change on farm- ing operations. We are looking forward to working with both Undersecretary McKinney and Under- secretary Censky as they assume their new roles. Hardwood Federation Positive On New USFS Chief Dana Cole is executive director of the Hardwood Federation. The Federation serves as the united voice of the hardwood industry. By Dana Cole Empty /ĚĞĂů &Ƶůů 1 2 3 4 5 EŽŶĞ /ĚĞĂů Surplus 1 2 3 4 5 Poorest Balanced Best 1 2 3 4 5 Min Stable Max 1 2 3 4 5 Min Stable Max 1 2 3 4 5 Min Stable Max 1 2 3 4 5 Min Stable Max 1 2 3 4 5 Min Stable Max 1 2 3 4 5 The gauges below represent "snapshot in time" opinions of in-the-field wood tie buyers who procure untreated crossties from sawmills in their regions. RTA does not warrant nor accept responsibility for the accuracy of the data generated. See more on rtastats.org. Hardwood Procurement Trends Eastern Half U.S. – November 2017 Crosstie Competitiveness vs. Other Hardwood Products Current .... Previous Issue Current Demand For Lumber (#2 and #3) Current Demand For Export Quantity Of Logs On Hand At Mill Yards Current Demand For Pallet Lumber Current Demand For Paper (Chips) Current Demand For Board/Mat Timbers Log Availability O

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