On March 25th the U.S. Court of International Trade released its opinion rejecting the challenge of the American Institute for International Steel Inc. (AIIS) vs. United States that alleged the enforcement of the President’s tariffs on certain steel imports under Section 232 was an improper delegation of legislative authority in violation of the Constitution. The US Court of International Trade found it was bound by precedent and as such, found in favor of the United States in the delegation of such authority.
AIIS not only immediately filed a notice of appeal with the Court of Appeal for the Federal Circuit, but also filed papers requesting that the U.S. Supreme Court allow them to bypass the Appeals Court. AIIS notes in their request it would be a waste of resources to go through the year-long process knowing the Appeals Court is bound by the same precedent. They also argued that the matter is urgent as the President is considering launching another round of Section 232 tariffs on imported automobiles.
It is rare for the Supreme Court to honor such a request and it will take four out of nine Justices to agree to hear the case for it to proceed.
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First, join the NATM Shipping Program, managed by PartnerShip®. You can receive FedEx discounts of up to 29% for your small package shipping. Or, call 800-599-2902. Once you have your discounts, enroll in My FedEx Rewards® and when you ship, you can earn gift cards of your choice. It’s easy and free to join both programs. You’ll earn your $10 gift card when you make your first qualifying shipment. Terms apply.
The NATM Board of Directors submitted a series of changes to the Bylaws to those of the NATM membership that hold voting rights as outlined in the Bylaws for approval. Some of the changes reflect the evolution of NATM since its inception and better clarifies practices. Other changes reflect changes in policy that need to be made before action can be taken.
The window for voting has closed and the membership has approved the changes as submitted.
While many of the changes have little impact on the membership directly, these changes have helped the NATM staff and Executive Committee work more efficiently. These changes include:
However, the membership can expect to see one significant change with the renewal process. Beginning with 2020 renewals, NATM members failing to pay their dues by the Jan. 31 deadline will have all membership benefits suspended until outstanding dues payments are made. NATM will continue to give members until May 1 to pay their dues without cancelling their membership as outlined in the Bylaws, however the Association will no longer provide the member benefits such as compliance consultations, technical support, advertising opportunities, educational content such as Tracks magazine, and the like during the time of their delinquency.
If you have questions about these changes or would like a copy of the NATM Bylaws, please contact NATM Executive Director Kendra Ansley.
NATM’s second annual national Trailer Safety Week is just around the corner, June 2-8, 2019. This year, the Trailer Safety Week team is excited to announce an expansion in programming to include an educational webinar for trailer manufacturers and dealers for those who are unable to attend an event in person.
The webinar will be Tuesday, June 4th at 1 pm central. Webinar participants will learn more about Trailer Safety Week, general safe towing practices, resources available for dealers and manufacturers to distribute to their end-users and about NATM and its Compliance Verification Program. The presentation will also focus on tire recordkeeping and the role of dealers and end-users in the process as well as provide a government affairs update and more.
June is prime time for hauling trailers, which makes it the perfect month for this awareness campaign, but can also make it difficult for dealers and trailer manufacturers to get away from their businesses. This presentation, about an hour in length, is a perfect opportunity to learn more about trailer safety and resources that can be passed along to consumers without leaving the office.
Sign up today and NATM will send you a reminder and webinar credentials closer to June 4th.
Interested in hosting an event or becoming a Trailer Safety Ally by participating in the safety movement online? Visit www.trailersafetyweek.com/interest to sign up today!
Updated Company Information Needed by May 31!
The annual NATM Membership Directory & Buyer’s Guide will be mailed to all members in August. In order to have current and accurate company information printed in the Guide, members should login to their NATM account to verify that all information is correct.
For those who do not know their company’s login credentials: usernames and passwords can be re-sent to the main contact’s email by clicking this link.
Additionally, the main contact for your company has already received an email with editable PDF documents if changes are needed. These documents can be sent back to email@example.com.
All changes must be received by May 31 end of day in order to be published in the Guide. Please contact Kelli Maydew at firstname.lastname@example.org or (785) 272-4433 if you have questions or concerns.
NATM 2019 Convention & Trade Show Recipients
NATM hosted its 31st annual Convention & Trade Show in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Feb. 19-21. In addition to educational workshops, networking receptions and the trade show, the Association presented multiple awards including the Associate Member of the Year, Green Manufacturing Award, Young Professional of the Year, and the Outstanding Member Award at the Membership Luncheon.
Delta Manufacturing, Inc. was awarded the NATM Green Manufacturing Award to recognize their innovative solutions of trailer manufacturing with reduced impact on the environment. PPG, Optronics International, The Carlstar Group, LaVanture Products Company, and Kenda/Americana Tire & Wheel sponsored this award bringing the total donation to $6,750. Ron Yarnell, OEM Sales Manager of PPG, assisted NATM President Patrick Jennissen with the presentation of the award and check to Delta who generously selected St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to receive the $6,750 contribution.
NATM presented the Regular Member NATM Outstanding Young Professional Award to Daniel Luby of BoatMateTrailers. This award is given to recognize the accomplishments of an individual 40-years old or younger who have been innovative and successful in the trailer manufacturing industry. In 2012, Luby started with BoatMate as Project Engineer and during his time there, he served as a liaison with engineers from OEM boat companies, helped develop a dealer direct sales network throughout the US and Canada, designed the heavy-duty pontoon trailer line brought to market in 2016. Daniel took on the role of Production Manager in 2018 along with his project engineering duties and he is an active participant in NATM’s Convention and Technology Committees.
NATM presented the Associate (Supplier) Member NATM Outstanding Young Professional Award to Stacey Miller of Dexter. Miller serves as the Brand and Communications Director at Dexter and has been increasingly involved with NATM, serving as the point of contact for most Dexter companies and participating on the NATM Convention Committee. She will be serving as the NATM Chairperson for the Marketing Committee in 2019.
The Outstanding Associate Member Award is presented each year to an individual from a supplier member company who has made a significant contribution to the trailer manufacturing industry. This year’s recipient, Bernie Goettker of UPF, has been in the trailer industry for nearly 40 years. He developed dozens of new products in the trailer industry and has been awarded 18 patents. Bernie has been active in both NATM, joining in 2001, and NMMA for several decades and has served on several committees, including the NATM Technical Committee as well as on educational panels sharing his expertise. He has been a regular supporter of the NATM Convention both through sponsorship and exhibition.
The Outstanding Regular Member Award is presented to an individual who has made outstanding contributions to NATM and the trailer manufacturing industry. This year’s recipient, Chris Steinman of MGS Incorporated, has been involved in the trailer industry for more than 25 years and he has been on the NATM Board of Directors since 2011. He chaired the NATM Technical Committee multiple times and later served as a member of the same committee. His thoughtful approach, strict adherence to the mission of trailer safety, and strong understanding of federal regulations and engineering practices made him an invaluable member of both his committee and the Board.
About the 2019 NATM Convention & Trade Show
The beautiful sunny weather in Florida was on NATM’s side this year with a total of 1027 in attendance. The trade show also included more trailer manufacturing companies than 2017 and the sold-out trade show included 43 new exhibitors giving all attendees plenty of opportunities to do business.
One 2019 exhibitor said, “The NATM show is a great opportunity to meet with a group of our existing customers in one place. Well worth our time and expense. We will be back next year.”
NATM educational workshops also boasted high attendance numbers as members enjoyed topics such as Recruiting & Retention Strategies, Trailer Brakes and Suspensions, an update on NATM’s proposed Association Health Plan, and Arc Welding Robotics to list a few. The Keynote Speaker Vince Poscente was powerful yet hilarious and engaging to help kick off a successful week. Attendees also enjoyed fireworks and great food during the Closing Celebration hosted at Disney’s Epcot. The show literally ended with a bang!
Thank you to the attendees, exhibitors and especially to NATM’s sponsors. The NATM Convention & Trade Show would not be possible without the support of its generous sponsors. We appreciate you!
Mark those calendars for Feb. 11-13, 2020. NATM looks forward to seeing you next year! Viva Las Vegas!
For more information about the Convention & Trade Show, contact NATM Events Coordinator Lane McNeil at Lane.McNeil@natm.com or call (785) 272-4433.
The National Association of Trailer Manufacturers' Political Action Committee – NATM PAC – was established in 2010 and it has since been active in each congressional election. The NATM PAC is an effective tool in helping NATM educate political leaders on our priorities and our great work improving the safety of the industry and nation.
Since the inception of the NATM PAC, 32 individuals have contributed $66,700 to the NATM PAC and the PAC has contributed to the campaigns of 28 Members of Congress.
Federal Law requires the NATM Political Action Committee to obtain written permission from you before you or your company can participate in the PAC. If you wish to participate in the NATM PAC, you must first authorize NATM to communicate with you regarding the PAC and NATM’s political activity, including periodic solicitations for contributions.
Approval does not obligate you to contribute; however, it does allow NATM to keep you informed about the PAC’s activities. Participation in the NATM PAC is voluntary and any decision to not contribute will in no way reflect adversely on anyone being solicited.
To complete the PAC solicitation agreement form to grant permission and learn more about our efforts to engage in the political process, click here.
For more information about the NATM PAC, please contact Meghan Ryan, NATM Assistant Director, at Meghan.Ryan@natm.com.
NATM is excited to once again partner with RSM US LLP to provide a webinar on the current state of the trailer manufacturing industry.
Given the relatively unpredictable economy and highly competitive business environment, trailer manufacturers need to capture every advantage for success. Learn how manufacturing companies like yours are addressing operational efficiencies, growth strategies, innovation, cost management—and much more.
Join RSM and the National Association of Trailer Manufacturers on June 24th for a webinar discussing key current trends and issues in the trailer manufacturing industry. This webinar will discuss the results of a nationwide survey of trailer manufacturers and will provide attendees with a unique opportunity to compare their business performance with other manufacturers across the country.
This webinar will help you plan and execute strategic objectives for:
Tim Koch has significant experience in providing audit, accounting and tax services to the manufacturing, distribution/wholesale and transportation industries. He serves as the functional lead for the specialty vehicle and leisure equipment industry practice, which serves clients throughout the United States and develops key services and shapes business practices for companies in the industry. Tim has been a long-time thought leadership provider, presenter and article author for events and publications sponsored by the National Association of Trailer Manufacturers.
Chris Bradford is the tax leader of RSM’s national transportation and leisure equipment industry practice. Chris has extensive knowledge and experience with corporate tax issues such as mergers, acquisitions and business combinations. He is responsible for providing a wide array of tax services to his clients including research and experimentation credits and cost segregation studies. Chris has also been sharing his tax expertise and trailer industry insights with National Association of Trailer Manufacturers members for many years.
Who should attend?
Chief information officers, chief operating officers, chief financial officers and CEOs of trailer manufacturing companies.
Details: June 24, 2019 at 1 p.m. EDT | Noon CDT
Cost: Free to NATM members!
Questions? For RSM: (313) 426-9708; For Kelli Maydew: (785) 272-4433 or email@example.com.
Register Here: https://rsmus.com/events/2019-trailer-mfg-webcast.html
U.S. Trade Representative Announces Some List 1 Exclusions, List 3 Still Uncertain
The U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) announced some exclusions to Section 301 List 1 tariffs. The list is not lengthy and represents perhaps only ancillary components affecting trailer manufacturers, if any. The notice of exclusions and complete list can be found here. The exclusions are retroactive to July 6, 2018. Importers can file post summary corrections or protests to obtain refunds from tariffs already paid on these items. Mowry & Grimson, a DC based legal group, reports that more than 10,000 exclusion requests have been filed for List 1 with more than 5,000 of those having been denied already.
The indefinite tariff escalation delay from 10% to 25% of Section 301 List 3 duties is still very much up in the air. While List 3 remains without an exclusion request opportunity, List 2 exclusion requests, totaling almost 3,000 in number, still remain pending a decision. NATM will keep member apprised as exclusions continue to be processed and negotiations with China continue.
Section 232 Challenge Denied in Court of Appeals
The U.S. Court of International Trade (CIT) rejected a challenge on Monday against the enforcement of the President’s tariffs on certain steel imports under Section 232. As a reminder, Section 232 allows the President to take action to adjust the level of specific imports when the Secretary of Commerce has determined said imports threaten to impair the national security of the U.S. This adjustment of imports is to last until they no longer pose a threat to national security.
The challenge alleged that the delegation of legislative authority was in violation of the Constitution. The CIT found that a previous Supreme Court case created a precedent that forced the three judges to reject the challenge. Some legal analysis contends the majority and dubitante opinions have left the door open for an appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and perhaps ultimately the Supreme Court. The parties have 60 days to appeal.
On March 7th, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced a proposal to the salary-level threshold for the overtime pay regulation. On March 21st the DOL published the notice in the federal register, opening a 60 day public comment period which will close on May 21st.
In May 2016, the DOL released the Final Rule on the overtime pay regulation raising the threshold from $23,660 to $47,476 for full-time exempt employees, but that effort was blocked by a U.S. District Court Judge and the appeal was denied. Since that time, employers have been expecting a new proposal to be released.
The new proposal raises the salary-level threshold to $35,308 ($679 per week), meaning individuals who make under $35,308 must be paid overtime if they work more than 40 hours per week. The proposal does not call for automatic adjustments to the salary or create salary levels based on the region of the country.
NATM's HR consultants released the following information in regard to this potential change:
What does this mean for employers? To prepare for the implementation of a potential Final Rule, employers should begin reviewing and analyzing the positions held by exempt employees who are paid less than $679 per week.
First, the employer should review each exempt employee’s job description. In order for an exemption to apply, an employee’s specific job duties and earnings must meet all applicable FLSA requirements. Job titles never determine exempt status under the FLSA.
Second, a salary analysis should be completed to determine how many hours on average an employee works in a year or within a pay period. As a business owner or senior level manager, you should make this analysis: Is it more cost effective to pay the overtime amount of 1½ times the employee’s regular rate of pay for any time worked over forty (40) hours or to increase the employee’s wage to meet the new salary threshold of $35,308?
Finally, once the position description review and salary analysis have been completed, an employer has several options to remedy the situation and ensure compliance with the proposed regulation changes.
Wait or act now? While a Final Rule has not been released, it may be in the best interest of employers to start reviewing options to ensure compliance with the proposed regulation changes. The proposed regulation changes are subject to a public comment period, which allows time for the public to express its views and concerns regarding the actions of an administrative agency. These new proposed regulations are anticipated to take effect in the latter part of 2019.
More information about the proposed rule is available here. NATM will keep its members apprised of development as the proposal is currently in a 60 day public comment period (which began March 7th). Should you have any questions, please reach out to NATM Executive Director, Kendra Ansley at Kendra.Ansley@natm.com or at 785-272-4433.