On Wednesday, June 16, 2021 NCHBA President Michael Enscore, President-Elect Wes Carroll, First Vice President Brandon Bryant, Immediate Past President Mark Martin, Past President Buddy Hughes and Executive Vice President Tim Minton went to Capitol Hill to discuss the ongoing lumber price crisis with key members of the North Carolina congressional delegation.
“We had two objectives in mind for this visit,” said Tim Minton. “First was to educate Congress on the impact this crisis is having on housing affordability in North Carolina. Second to emphasize that relief from this crisis will have to come from Washington since the factors causing this crisis are national. We felt that both of these messages could be best delivered face-to-face.”
The group had an excellent discussion with Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) who is a key member of the Senate Banking, Housing & Urban Affairs Committee. They next met with Congressman David Price (D-4th District) who is chairman of the House Transportation, Housing & Urban Development Appropriations Subcommittee. They also met with both Representatives Patrick McHenry (R-10th District) who is the ranking member of the House Financial Services Committee and with Virginia Foxx (R-5th District) who is the ranking member of the House Committee on Education and Labor.
“We were delighted with the reception we received from all of these members,” Minton said. “Our officers were able to explain how this crisis was affecting each of them personally as well as the state in general. We were also able to suggest potential solutions.” Among the solutions discussed were:
• Calling on Congress to push the Administration into conducting an examination of the lumber supply chain to ensure maximum output and to determine if there is any evidence of collusion.
• Encouraging the Administration to increase the domestic supply of timber harvested from public land.
• Urge the Administration to return to the negotiating table with Canada to resolve the issue of tariffs on Canadian soft lumber.