By Michael Copp, Executive Vice President
The PHCC Federation represents (as described back in 1883) a membership of “allied contractors” engaged in a “movement” dedicated to the “advancement and education of the plumbing and HVACR industry for the health, safety, and comfort of society and the protection of the environment.” This movement requires engagement at the local, state, and national level to ensure that members mobilize in lockstep when our industry is being attacked either by faulty and wasteful legislative or regulatory requirements. Advocacy is the primary way that the PHCC Federation advances critical issues that keep members up at night and influences legislative and regulatory efforts with a call for action.
In a recent survey, PHCC members ranked “legislative and regulatory leadership/representation” as a critical driver of membership in the association. As one member said in an interview: “If we have a problem and we want to see laws changed, we have a say and that’s awesome.” We are delighted to hear comments like that because they indicate PHCC is providing exactly the type of representation that the PHCC founders envisioned so many years ago.
In 2019, major PHCC advocacy issues include unfair competition, Association Health Plans and infrastructure spending. I was pleased to be part of a PHCC delegation at the 2019 Legislative Conference that talked directly with national lawmakers about our organization’s positions on these crucial issues. During this annual conference and other visits on Capitol Hill throughout the years, I have seen firsthand that these elected officials do listen to us.
In addition to the priority issues at this year’s Legislative Conference, other areas of focus directly affecting our members over the past several years include:
- Department of Labor’s Task Force on Apprenticeship Expansion
- $1.2 billion Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act
- Support for 529 savings plan being opened to technical education
- Gas Furnace Efficiency Version 2 proposal from AHRI to consolidate multiple component standards to a single furnace standard
- Rulemaking process for VRF HVAC products
- National Association Health Plan
- Immigration reform
- Waters of the U.S. rulemaking (WOTUS)
- Reauthorization of the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA)
- Reauthorization and making permanent the appropriation for WaterSense
- Lead paint renovation rules
- EnergyStar funding and EPA oversight
- Tax reform
- Permanent, full expensing of all business expenses (179D)
- Affordable Care Act Individual Mandate to $0
- Eliminate Alternative Minimum Tax
A UK campaigner, Saira O’Mallie, remarked “If you ever feel like you’re just one person trying to change something, I promise there are hundreds, thousands, if not millions of people out there who feel the same way as you, who want to make a difference.” There is power and influence in numbers, and the bigger the PHCC organization grows, the more meaningful our movement becomes. We encourage members like you to “tell your story” and call for action that protects this great industry.