Industry solidarity: Working together on common threats and interests is our best option

August 9th, 2023 - 4:21 pm

ASA Platinum supplier partner spotlight: Bradford White

By Carl A. Pinto Jr.


Industry regulator experts unite on key PHCP/PVF challenges: From left, Chuck White (PHCC), Bob Wolfer (Bradford White), Jim Collura (NEFI) and Steve Rossi (ASA). Photo courtesy of Bradford White. Image courtesy of ASA

Today’s world is becoming increasingly more divided and those of us in the PHCP/PVF industry are not at all shielded from the divisiveness by living and working within our own bubble.

As the challenge of emotionally charged issues such as workforce development and electrification become more and more politicized, manufacturers and distributors, as well as our respective customers, become increasingly vulnerable to the fallout of one-sided views and misinformation. This is why maintaining a united front and voice across our industry on the issues we face together may be more important now than ever before.

Earlier this year, I attended an industry legislative conference in Washington, D.C., and was extremely pleased to see several industry organizations syncing their “fly-ins” and touching upon our shared concerns such as hiring new talent and some of the proposed or already passed decarbonization policies.
Reinforcing that united front, American Supply Association’s Steve Rossi and Bradford White’s Bob Wolfer, were co-panelists for a pre-meeting at the 2023 Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors Association (PHCC) legislative conference. Rossi and Wolfer sat alongside regulatory experts from PHCC and the National Energy & Fuels Institute (NEFI), and those in attendance were clearly energized by their collective knowledge and commitment.Knowing the issues is only half the battle: Your voice matters

If you are a member of ASA, or even simply a member of the PHCP/PVF industry at large, it is important for you to know as much as possible about workforce development and decarbonization regulatory matters on a national, state and local level.
While these are far from the only issues we collectively face, they are sitting right atop the challenges list for many of us and making a lot of the recent headlines. If you feel informed about these issues, GREAT! That’s step one. Now, take step two by leveraging your industry associations and resources, starting with those provided by ASA.

First, make sure you are visiting ASA’s Legislative & Regulatory Issues web page. Here you will find a summary of the top issues and hopefully most, if not all, will be familiar to you. Then, take the next by joining the trips to “The Hill” and lend your voice to that of your colleagues and association, whether it be ASA or one of the many other great industry organizations that are advocating and lobbying on your behalf. If you’ve never been to a fly-in, it is educational, eye-opening and a chance to personally partake in the process. It is your right as a citizen to engage, and an opportunity that every American should exercise because policymakers do listen to their constituents.

I have had the privilege of serving two distinctly different industries in my career, but both were heavily regulated. First, healthcare and now, the plumbing and HVAC industry, the latter of which has more passion on every level than anything I’ve ever had the opportunity in which to participate.
From contractors to wholesalers, and manufacturers to reps, the sum is far greater than our parts, especially when it comes to enhancing our industry and representing our customers.
ASA continuously “engages decision-makers and empowers its members to have a voice,” and that will always work better when there are more voices to be heard.

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