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RVIA’s Advocacy Day Agenda Ready for June 8

March 23, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

RVIA members discuss industry issues with U.S. Rep. Joe Donnelly at Advocacy Day 2008

RVIA members discuss industry issues with U.S. Rep. Joe Donnelly, D-Ind., at Advocacy Day 2008

Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) members will visit elected officials and key legislative staff during the association’s Capitol Hill Advocacy Day, scheduled for Wednesday, June 8, during Committee Week.

“Advocacy Day is vitally important to our efforts to increase awareness of the RV industry on the federal level,”  Jay Landers, senior director of RVIA’s Government Affairs Department, stated in a news release. “Congressional visits help strengthen relationships between RVIA members and the members of Congress who represent their states and districts.”

RVIA Government Affairs staff schedule appointments with elected officials, provide briefing materials and accompany members on visits. The program also gives participants the opportunity to have photos taken with congressmen and senators.

Advocacy Day begins with a morning meeting during which RVIA members are briefed on the issues they will be discussing with members of Congress. The briefing includes exercises that help RVIA members practice discussing key issues before they set out to meet elected officials.

For more information on RVIA’s Capitol Hill Advocacy Day, contact Jay Landers at jlanders@rvia.org

RVIA’s Committee Week is set to take place June 6 – 9 at the Willard Intercontinental Hotel in Washington, D.C.

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RVIA Delays Bd. Meeting; Cancels Advocacy Day

February 8, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

A view of the U.S. Capitol from Pennsylvania Avenue SE. Photo courtesy of Moldova.org.

A view of the U.S. Capitol from Pennsylvania Avenue SE. Photo courtesy of Moldova.org.

The Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) has postponed its board meeting scheduled for Thursday (Feb. 11) at the Washington Court Hotel in Washington, D.C., due to last weekend’s crippling snow storm and an second storm expected Tuesday and Wednesday.

Also canceled was RVIA’s Capitol Hill Advocacy Day planned for Wednesday during which RVIA members were to meet with federal legislators and their staff.

”The board meeting will be rescheduled, but I don’t think that Advocacy Day will be,” said RVIA spokesman Bill Baker.

Baker said it hasn’t been determined whether the RVIA board will meet in Washington or whether the meeting will be conducted during a conference call.

The board was expected to receive updates on market conditions and this year’s RV industry centennial celebration.

Board members were notified of the cancellation in an e-mail that was sent out late Saturday.

”Due to a record-breaking snow storm in the Washington, D.C., area, coupled with an anticipated 5-10 inches of additional snow next Tuesday and Wednesday, RVIA has canceled the association’s Capitol Hill Advocacy Day on Wednesday, Feb. 10, and the board of directors’ meeting on Thursday, Feb. 11,” the e-mail said. ”RVIA is expected to reschedule the board of directors meeting at a future date.”

Advocacy Day, usually held during RVIA Committee Week in June, was scheduled for Wednesday because Committee Week this year will be held in South Bend, Ind.

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RVIA Firms Plans for Feb. 10 Advocacy Day in D.C.

January 11, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Capitol BuildingThe Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) is finalizing plans for the association’s 8th annual Capitol Hill Advocacy Day, a day-long event set for Feb. 10 to provide members the opportunity visit U.S. senators, representatives and key legislative staff to discuss industry issues, according to a news release.

“The primary goal of Advocacy Day is to increase awareness of the RV industry on the federal level and to continue to strengthen the valuable relationships between RVIA members and the members of Congress who represent their states and districts,” said Jay Landers, senior director of Government Affairs.

“In addition, we will plan to focus our conversations on the renewal of the sales and excise tax deduction for motorhomes as well as including towable RVs and truck campers in the renewal of that tax benefit. We’ll also be urging congressional members to join their colleagues in signing a proclamation designating June as RV Centennial Celebration Month.”

Advocacy Day begins with a morning meeting during which RVIA members are briefed on the issues they will be discussing with members of Congress. At that time, participants are teamed up with an RVIA staff guide to assist in getting to the scheduled appointments with elected officials. The program also gives participants the opportunity to have photos taken with congressmen and senators. RVIA staff is also exploring bringing in a speaker to energize Advocacy Day participants.

With RVIA’s Committee Week and annual meeting being held in Indiana this June, RVIA decided to conduct Advocacy Day in conjunction with the RVIA board of directors meeting on Feb. 11 so that members would not need to make a second trip to Washington.

For more information and to sign up to attend RVIA’s Capitol Hill Advocacy Day, contact Landers at jlanders@rvia.org or (703) 620-6003 ext. 354.

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RVIA’s Advocacy Day in 2010 Moved Up to Feb. 10

December 9, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

U.S. Capitol BuildingThe Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) reminds its member to participate in the annual Advocacy Day, scheduled for Feb. 10 in Washington, D.C.

RVIA encourages its members to join fellow members on Capitol Hill as an advocate for the RV industry. Advocacy Day provides a great opportunity to develop relationships (or enhance existing ones) with their legislators in Washington, the RVIA notes.

Advocacy Day gives RVIA members a chance to meet their U.S. senators and representatives and their staffers, forge relationships that will aid their business and discuss issues important to the RV industry.

RVIA will schedule the meetings, provide policy materials and help escort all groups. A morning briefing offers informative presentations to prepare you for the event.

Normally held during Committee Week in June, the 2010 Advocacy Day was moved up for 2010 because RVIA wanted to hold Committee Week in Elkhart, Ind., next year so as to reduce travel costs for members. Committee Week also will involve some RV centennial events.

Advocacy Day can’t be held in Elkhart so RVIA decided to combine Advocacy Day with the the board of directors meeting to be held Feb. 11.

For more information, contact  Jay Landers at jlanders@rvia.org or (800) 336-0154 Ext. 354, or Clint Woods at cwoods@rvia.org or call (800) 336-0154 Ext. 318.

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Sen. Bayh Pledges to Fight on for RV Industry

June 18, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

U.S. Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Ind.,  has pledged to continue his fight for the RV industry.

“During tough times like these, workers at Indiana’s RV factories, supplier plants and dealerships are counting on their leaders to make Washington work for them, not the other way around,” Bayh said in a statement this week. “There is more work to do, and I pledge to continue my efforts on Capitol Hill to protect local jobs as we work together to get more RVs on the road again.”

Bayh was one of three recipients of the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association’s (RVIA) National Legislative Award for his ongoing advocacy on behalf of the RV industry, particularly with regard to stimulus legislation and Small Business Administration rule changes that now allow RV dealers greater accessibility to federally guaranteed floorplan loans. The award was given during RVIA’s Advocacy Day activities in Washington, D.C., last week.

In his statement, Bayh added, “Hoosiers should be proud of our heritage as a great manufacturing state. We make things, and we make them well. Few industries in Indiana have endured greater hardship in recent months than the one that makes our family camping vehicles. Elkhart County is the recreational vehicle capital of America. Since the recession began, more than half of the RV industry’s workers have been laid off. Thousands of Hoosiers have lost their jobs.

“When dealerships can’t obtain financing to purchase new stock for their showroom floors, it creates a harmful ripple effect across the industry. In April, I asked the new head of the Small Business Administration to expand a lending program to help RV dealers get access to credit. Less than two months later, the SBA delivered. I was pleased to stand with senior White House officials in Kokomo last month to announce a new national program to help RV and auto dealers finance new inventory purchases. I was also pleased to author and pass a new tax break to spur RV purchases, saving middle-class families up to $1,100 on a new vehicle. Both steps should help Hoosier workers, as well as the families and communities that depend on them.”

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RVIA Leaders Get Warm Reception on Advocacy Day

June 15, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

The Recreation Vehicle Industry Association’s (RVIA) leadership went calling on Wednesday (June 10) to members of Congress and the Senate from eight states as part of RVIA’s 7th Annual Advocacy Day in Washington, D.C., in conjunction with RVIA Committee Week.

And the reception, by most accounts, was warm.

“We talked about the status of the industry, and clearly credit was the lead item,” reports Jay Landers, RVIA senior director of government affairs. Also top of the mind among RV industry opinion leaders is securing state sales and excise tax deductions on federal taxes for the purchase of travel trailers — as was the case with the tax break on the first $49,500 that buyers pay for motorhomes that was included in the $787 billion stimulus package signed in February by President Barack Obama. “If there is going to be another bill, we need to get travel trailers in there as well,” Landers said.

However, Indiana legislators were the primary targets of RVIA’s 17 Advocacy “lobbyists,” who held 38 meetings on Capitol Hill. Those solons, whose northern Indiana district accounts for more than 60% of the RV industry’s annual production, included Democratic Sen. Evan Bayh, Democratic Rep. Joe Donnelly and Republican Reps. Mark Souder and Mike Pence. Legislators and staff from Idaho, California, Arizona, Mississippi, Colorado, Kansas and Tennessee also were the subject of meetings.

Bayh, Donnelly and Souder received RVIA’s National Legislative Award for their ongoing advocacy on behalf of the RV industry, particularly with regard to stimulus legislation and Small Business Administration rule changes that now allow RV dealers greater accessibility to federally guaranteed floorplan loans.

“Our ‘asks’ aren’t terribly heavy, and I think were were really embraced,” said Landers. “Sen. Bayh, particularly, made a commitment to double back and try to get towables into the excise and sales tax deductions that were given to motorhomes. He’s definitely interested in getting towables included. We also talked a little bit about the industry going ‘green,’ and the PFK study that shows that CO2 emissions are reduced 50% compared to fly-drive vacations.”

Regular attendees noted that this was the first time that Bayh had met personally with RV industry representatives to discuss their concerns.

“I think that we made a lot of headway,” Public Relations Committee Chairman BJ Thompson told RVBusiness. “We were well received by Congressman Souder, who spent an unusual amount of time with us, talking about the challenges that we’re facing as a general economy and as a specific industry. I might add that I detected some overt energy and enthusiasm in supporting the industry by Congressmen Souder and Donnelly and even by the unusual appearance of Sen. Bayh. I found him to be friendly and affable, and he was very interested in what we were doing and what our needs were.”

Thompson, president of BJ Thompson Associates, Mishawaka, Ind., says Donnelly and Bayh have made the RV industry a “priority,” and he feels that Obama’s Feb. 9 attendance at an Elkhart town hall meeting has played a key role in all that. “By coming to Elkhart,” said Thompson, “Obama made an overt move to support the RV industry and the Elkhart community. And Congressman Donnelly and Senator Bayh have not let the administration and the Obama staff and others in Congress forget that President Obama has put a stake down and said, ‘the Elkhart business community is a sign of how well I’m going to do.’”

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RVIA Readies for Committee Week, Advocacy Day

April 24, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

rvia-logo5 Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) members will gather at the historic Willard Intercontinental  Hotel in Washington, D.C., for Committee Week 2009, set for June 8-11.

 During the event, the association’s standing committees, executive committee and board of directors will meet to develop strategies and programs for the upcoming fiscal year.  On Wednesday, June 10, RVIA members will visit U.S. senators, representatives and key legislative staff during the association’s annual Capitol Hill Advocacy Day.

The Go RVing Coalition is also scheduled to meet in conjunction with Committee Week on Monday, June 8.

The deadline to make room reservations for Committee Week at the Willard is May 15. 

For more information about Committee Week or to register for the event, contact Doreen Cashion in the Meetings and Shows Division at (703) 620-6003  ext. 324 or dcashion@rvia.org. For more information on RVIA’s Capitol Hill Advocacy Day, contact Jay Landers at (703) 620-6003 ext. 354

A schedule of meetings and events is below.

Monday, June 8

8 a.m. to 12 noon, RVST Industry Education Council

12 moon to 1 p.m., Chairman’s Luncheon

1 p.m. to 5 p.m., Industry Education Committee, Go RVing Committee, Lawyers’ Committee, Market Information Committee.

(Previously scheduled meetings of the Committee on Excellence and the Annual Meeting Committee have been canceled.) 

Tuesday, June 9

8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Public Relations Committee*

8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Standards Committee

9 a.m. to 5 p.m., National Show Committee and Public & Legislative Affairs Committee

12 noon to 2 p.m., RVIA Membership Meeting/Luncheon

2 p.m. to 5 p.m., Financial Services Committee

2 p.m. to 4 p.m., Suppliers Committee

4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Membership Committee

*The PR Committee welcomes all Committee Week attendees from 8 am. to 8:30 a.m. for the latest “RVTV” — 30 minutes of the best and most recent coverage of RVs.

Wednesday, June 10

8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m., Pre-Capitol Hill Briefing

10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Advocacy Day Event on Capitol Hill

8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Long Range Planning/Executive Committee

Thursday, June 11

8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Board of Directors

12 noon to 1 p.m., Board of Directors Working Luncheon

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