Hello OSHBA members I hope everyone is having a great year and a wonderful summer. As I’m writing this, our Oklahoma delegation and I have just
returned from the first NAHB board of directors meeting of 2018. And if there was a theme, it would be DON’T TREAD ON ME as the building industry continues to recover and helps put Americans back to work. We as an industry are standing firm and united through our Buildpac Advocacy efforts, and we are making a difference.
Example of this was at our recent spring executive meeting the executive board was invited to the White House where we met with Vice President Pence and later that day Secretary Ben Carson spoke at the executive board meeting. This is unprecedented and a credit to how vital our advocacy is.
On the Economic front, Dr. Rob Dietz gave his report from the board floor.
He is projecting the fed will increase interest rate two more times this year and twice in 2019, which should leave us with interest rates reaching a rate of 5.25 in 2020.
He is projecting growth at 3% for 2018, 2.7% for 2019,1.5% for 2020. Housing stats for 2018 925k, 2019 991k, 2020 1 million. He also indicated that consumer confidence was at a two year high in part to the income tax reform which helped to drive personal income growth up by 2.4%. He indicated that they are watching indicators for any signs of economic slowdown and does not anticipate any for at least two years,
National and local concerns are the same at the committee and council meetings. In Portland, a theme of concerns on runaway lumber prices and labor shortages were at the top of everyone’s list. Chairman Randy Noel and staff have met with Secretary Ross to share our concerns, and they have started to inquire about the coordinated lumber price increases far above the 20% Canadian tariff. Chairman Noel also met with president Trump committing that NAHB would help to train 50,000 new workers for the building industry. As of the time of writing this article, the meeting with secretary Ross is yielding results as lumber price are slowly starting to come down.
Updates on key items of concern, OSHA has been writing tickets for the new silica guidelines. Over 170 tickets in the