What We Do
The NEHPBA Government Affairs Committee works to serve its members’ businesses by advocating the hearth industry’s interests to all levels of government and protecting the industry from restrictive public policy and regulation.
The greatest challenges to the hearth industry are government regulations that impact our livelihood. Knowledge is the key to protecting ourselves and our businesses. The fireplace industry faces more government regulation than any other building material industry segment because we impact both the environment and energy - two of the most hotly debated areas of national concern. Even though regulation is formed at the national level, it is almost always implemented at the local level.
Our Government Affairs team is here to help you. We are your watch dog at the grassroots level here to serve as a resource and advocate for your business. We all should know the issues affecting our industry! Every one of us needs to get educated and stay updated on legislative and regulatory activity. Take advantage of materials like this website or check out Fireline – the HPBA Government Affairs Committee's quarterly e-mail newsletter and HPBA Hot News email messages. Sign up for "Action Alerts" on the HPBA website so you can be notified when issues arise.
Join our team!
Help NEHPBA “fight the fires” to stop negative impacts to our industry - become a part of the local fight to preserve our right to make a living in the hearth industry. By joining NEHPBA and becoming involved in the regulatory issues facing our states, you help not only your own business but the industry as a whole. It takes all of us getting involved in the political issues facing our industry to keep opposing interests from determining our fate. Be proactive in helping to shape the laws that affect your business by volunteering your time and expertise. Give as much or as little time as you can - you can make a difference!
Contact Deb Lyons, Director of Government Affairs, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 603-669-2744 ext. 2#
A representative is a member of the Government Affairs Committee. Representatives attend one conference call per month. In addition, as timely events and issues present themselves, a representative will communicate with others through a Basecamp project management database tool. Board Committees include Government Affairs, Membership, Annual Meeting, and Education.
Member hearth industry experts volunteer their time and knowledge to share presentations with Code Officials. Speakers will have the opportunity to educate Building Officials/AHJs/Fire Marshals on wood-burning fireplaces and stoves, pellet-burning appliances, factory-built fireplaces, gas hearth systems/fireplace inserts, and proper venting of all fuel types in prepared two-hour or one five-hour overview format. Speakers decide his/her availability and approve engagements at monthly or annual industry events as their schedule permits. Our goal is to schedule Speakers Bureau sessions from April to August thus avoiding busy burn season commitments.
An Analyst reviews email updates with regard to legislation or building codes that affect our profession as identified by Multi-State and/or BCAP services. While Multi-State messages address legislation, BCAP email messages address building codes. You will find the volume of messages will increase during the first quarter of every year with those three months having the most legislative activity, but you will never receive more than three emails per week at the height of any season. Analysts will focus his/her attention on the states represented in the Northeast region.
NSPS - New Source Performance Standards Act of 2017 – H.R. 453
The Legislation, formerly known as the “Relief from New Source Performance Standards Act of 2017" – H.R. 453 (NSPS) would extend the effective date of EPA’s Step 2 regulation for new biomass-fueled stoves and central heaters from May 15, 2020 to May 15, 2023. Although much of the Step 1 requirements, which were effective as of May 15, 2015, are achievable, there are still outstanding issues with Step 2 of the rule. An extra three years would provide enough time for our small industry to have equal opportunity and access to test labs, skilled lab engineers, and to develop the future of wood hearing.
This isn’t a matter of manufacturers not wanting to comply with the rule. It is the sheer problem of the lack of time and capacity to complete this effort industry-wide within the time allotted by the EPA. Additional time also provides market stability for manufacturers and retails alike who are concerned with which products may or may not be sold after the Step 2 effective date. Read more here.
2017 Governors and Legislatures
Click here for a comprehensive list of all State Governors and Legislators
NET-ZERO Energy Initiatives
The concept of “Zero Net Energy” (ZNE) homes is spreading like wild fire! The usually are homes that use very little energy and generate all or most, of their own energy on an annual basis. The concept differs a little in different parts of the country, but so far, most of the ZNE homes we’ve seen, don’t have any Hearth products. Please start to look for these types of homes and/or projects in your area. There was one featured in Connecticut recently, and, more ominously, a bill has been introduced in Massachusetts to mandate ZNE in their building code. That bill died, but January starts a new session, in every state, and the ‘race to be the greenest’ may preclude fireplaces. Please let your association know if you can document a ZNE house or project in your area.
Hangtags, Labels, Owners Manuals
NEHPBA has received word that some of our retailers have been visited this week by government representatives from the State of Connecticut enforcing the NSPS. To thwart confusion over which products are certified, below are links to the current lists of EPA-certified appliances.
Please let us know if you experience any events or if you have any questions.
- Bill H.2930 - An Act Relative to Wood Pellet Fuel
- Bill H.3399 - An Act Relative to Energy Production
EPA-Certified Stove Lists
- Wood Stove Changout Overview
- Biomass Stove Tax Credit Overview for Retailers December 2016
- Wood Stove Change-Out Programs
- Brief Changeout Infographic
- General NEHPBA Changeout Timeline
The Government Affairs Academy (GAA) is a conference created and taught by the HPBA Government Affairs Department staff and outside consultants. Established in 2006, the GAA consists of members and Affiliate staff from all over the United States who travel to Washington DC for a crash course in becoming agents of change.
For a week, attendees participate in rigorous elective sessions around lobbying, initiating grassroots advocacy campaigns, communicating with Congress, and learning how to become spokespeople for the hearth industry to promote HPBA's legislative agenda.
Next offering is scheduled for Summer 2018
- Media Training
- Negotiation and Testimony Training
- Introduction to Federal Lobbying
- Lobby State Legislatures
- Industry Issues
- Codes and Regulations
- Grassroots/Lobbying: The Path to Political Power (2009)
- The Place for Pellets in Commercial/Institutional
- Facilities (2009)
- Communicating with Congress
- Inside Lobbying
Contact Diane Rossi, Executive Director, at email@example.com or 603-669-2744 ext. 1#
Speakers Bureau volunteers are being recruited to offer their time and share presentations with local code officials during the months of April - September. Speakers are members of NEHPBA and are NFI-certified. Successful lecturers will enjoy sharing his/her knowledge of the hearth industry to a group of professionals while having the confidence to answer questions about the industry and building codes. We offer presentations ready to share on wood burning fireplaces and stoves, pellet burning appliances, factory built fireplaces, gas hearth systems/fireplace inserts, and proper venting of al fuel types (in 2-hour sessions) or a full five-hour day curriculum.
Contact Deb Lyons, Director of Government Affairs, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 603-669-2744 ext. 2#
Presentations (Members Only)
- Gas Hearth Systems/Fireplace Inserts
- Pellet-Burning Appliances
- Proper Venting of all Fuel Types
- Wood-Burning Fireplaces and Stoves
Let NEHPBA be your hearth industry resource!
Please remember that NEHPBA is here to make your job easier! Are you familiar with the principles of combustion, heat transfer and draft? Are you completely confident in what to look for when doing inspections? Do you know the shortcuts an installer (or a do-it-yourselfer) might have taken? Let us have one of our certified industry professionals join your local group/Association at monthly meetings to present educational sessions on hearth products – for FREE! We offer the following curriculum in two-hour formats:
- Wood burning fireplaces and stoves
- Pellet burning appliances
- Factory built appliances
- Gas hearth systems/fireplace inserts
- Proper venting of all fuel types
Ready to reserve a speaker for your Spring or Summer meeting? Please click on the link to register:
Contact Deb Lyons, Director of Government Affairs, at email@example.com or 603-669-2740 ext. 2#
Become an Industry Advocate!
Help the hearth industry by sending letters to your elected officials through the HPBA Legislative Action Center,
organize a tour of your facility for your Member of Congress, or become a NEHPBA Analyst!