Hot News
Government Affairs Updates at Expo
Have Questions About the NSPS? Join Us for a Class at Expo
Wednesday, March 11 | 11:00 am | Room 291/292 of the Convention Center

Retailers, distributors, and manufacturers’ representatives, join us for a review of what is required by the upcoming NSPS that is coming into effect May 15, 2020. Led by HPBA’s Senior Manager – Government Affairs, Rachel Feinstein, we will commit a full hour to reviewing what’s required today, after May 15, 2020, and answer any and all questions you have. Do you know whether you can install a Step 1 stove after the May 15, 2020 effective date if it was sold before the deadline? What are the rules for donating a stove to a nonprofit organization? Can you sell used stoves after the effective date? If you aren’t sure of the answers to these questions, this is a must attend. If you sell wood or pellet burning products, your business may depend on you being familiar with this law.
Key Government Affairs Meeting for Hearth Manufacturers at HPBExpo 
Wednesday, March 11 | 8:00 am to 10:30 am | Room 272 of the Convention Center

HPBA invites all hearth manufacturer members to attend the annual Wednesday morning meeting at HPBExpo. The meeting, in Room 272, will start at 8:00 am on Wednesday. The first half of this meeting is a must for all manufacturers of natural gas and propane-fueled hearth products (including outdoor products), while the second half will focus on issues affecting wood-burning products.

Get the latest information on opportunities for the industry, as well as regulatory and policy threats to hearth products across North America. For gas appliances, this includes updates on minimum efficiencies in Canada, California, and Washington. The push to ban natural gas in new homes is gaining momentum – find out how HPBA is responding and what you need to know.

For manufacturers of solid fuel-burning appliances, there will be an update on the Environmental Protection Agency’s New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) for New Residential Wood Heaters. HPBA staff and consultants will provide the latest on efforts to create a national changeout program and other legislation related to tax credit developments.

All manufacturing and laboratory members are invited to attend, with both technical and marketing staff. A full agenda will be sent out to Section members soon – but save the date and time. For more information, please contact Ryan Carroll.
Government Affairs Report at HPBExpo on Solid Fuel and Gas Hearth Products Regulations
Friday, March 13 | 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm | Room 272 of the Convention Center

HPBA’s Government Affairs staff will provide you with everything you need to know about the EPA’s NSPS (are you ready for May 15, 2020?). HPBA’s pilot light initiative, tax credits, changeout program opportunities, and state and federal issues and their impact on you and your customers will be discussed. Licensing for installers is a hot issue in many states and may well be in yours next – find out what you need to know. New this year is a discussion of the local bans on natural gas in new homes and what you need to know to help stop these efforts.

(Earn one CEU for this education session.)
Don't Be Scammed by Fake Emails
In recent months, HPBA and HPBA members have seen an increase in phishing scam emails. These scammers send an email to you that looks like it’s coming from someone you know. They may ask you a question to get you to respond, confirming that your email is active.

The email may contain a fake invoice or say that you owe them money. These scams are dangerous – they have earned these bad actors millions of dollars over the years from unsuspecting people. What should you do if you receive a suspicious email from someone you think you know? Never respond directly to the email you received. Contact the person or company using a phone number, email, or website you know is real, not the information in the email. Attachments and links can install harmful malware.

Read more information and tips about phishing scams and how to protect yourself and your company on the FTC’s website
HPBExpo 2020
Exhibition: March 12-14
Education: March 11-13
Ernest N. Morial Convention Center
Let Us Know You Are Coming to HPBExpo!
Register now and join thousands of hearth, patio, and barbecue professionals and experience new products in the spotlight of the industry's premiere event. Hotel rooms are available at a discounted rate on a first-come, first-served basis, so book now to reserve one of your top choice hotels in New Orleans! 
Housing Closes Soon, so don’t delay and book your reservations today! A couple properties have just agreed to lower their rates, so get them while they are available. The Residence Inn is $199 (was $236), and the Sheraton is $219 (was $259). To see all of the available hotels be sure to check out our reservation link .

It's Not too Late to Book Your Exhibit Space
Visit our Apply to Exhibit page for floor plans and contracts or contact Anita Derouin to discuss booth options. 
Keynote Address Announcement
Thursday, March 12 • 8:30am-9:45am • La Nouvelle Ballroom
Hot Profit: Optimizing Retail Space to Spark Growth in Your Sales
Presentation is everything. The way a product is showcased, the salesroom layout, and the customer experience are all deciding factors in closing a deal. In an effort to show retailers how to increase sales, this year’s Keynote Address, “Hot Profit: Optimizing Retail Space to Spark Growth in Your Sales,” will be delivered by Wayne Visbeen of Visbeen Architects. As the interior designer and architect behind an iconic list of ground-breaking and effective retail environments, Visbeen will share his unique insight backed by examples of previous successes.

As comfortable on a construction site as he is designing a store layout, Visbeen has a deep understanding of custom residential design and the current trends shaping the indoor-outdoor living industry. His architectural practice, Visbeen Architects , continues to utilize products found at HPBExpo and reimagines spaces with breathtaking beauty and functionality.

Bonus Topic: How to Win Hearth & Outdoor Architectural Specs

By popular demand, Wayne will also be sharing his tips on what dealers need to do to win fireplace specs; Q&A to follow!
Generously sponsored by Napoleon Products, the HPBExpo 2020 Keynote Address aims to provide unique retail insights and highlight the key concepts you will be able to use for better sales and better customer experiences.

The Keynote Address is free to all registered HPBExpo 2020 participants.  
HPBExpo 2020 Mobile App Is Now Available   
The show mobile app conveniently allows you to plan your route, research and schedule appointments with exhibitors, manage your education, show events, and much more.
Expo Education Update
The HPBExpo Education Program will equip you with the knowledge (and the continuing education credits) you need to stay ahead of your competition. This year there are four exclusive education sessions only available at EXPO. They are:

  • Showroom Design,
  • Win More with a Marketing Strategy,
  • Sales Leadership,
  • HPBA Hearth & BBQ Consumer Research Survey Results. 

Be sure to check out the full program schedule .

New in 2020, online exams will be available onsite. Attendees can conveniently take exams throughout the duration of HPBExpo 2020 by registering for an allotted time of their choosing. With ten computers available, space will be limited, so registering early will be critical in getting the date and time that works best for you. Additionally, the exams will be graded upon submission, providing almost instantaneous results. For complete details, contact the NFI Office at 703-524-8030. 
Operation BBQ Relief Veterans Luncheon  
Wednesday, March 11 • 11:00am-1:00pm • NOLA VA Medical Center
As a way to give back to the NOLA community and to kick off the start of HPBExpo, Operation Barbecue Relief and HPBA will be serving a barbecue lunch to veterans on Wednesday, March 11 from 11:00am to 1:00pm at the New Orleans VA Medical Center. Volunteers are needed for this event, so if anyone is interested, contact Kelly VanDermark Volunteers will need to be available from 9:30am - 2:00pm. Manufacturers interested in donating any products for the lunch can reach out to Joey Rusek.
The Fire Time Podcast – Live Episode Hosted by Tim Reed
Friday, March 13 11:00am-12:00pm Booth #601
Most of our industry is made up of family businesses—which can be both a blessing and a curse. Join Tim Reed as he interviews Stephen Schroeter (co-CEO, Napoleon) and Grant Falco (Owner, Falco’s) about the dynamics of family businesses in today’s market. This conversation will cover:
  • The similarities of family business regardless of the size of your company,
  • What kinds of boundaries should be set up to protect your family from being run over by the business, and
  • How to harness the relationships within your family to take your business where it’s never gone before.

Don’t miss the chance to learn what you need to take your family business to the next level!
Also check out episode 45 , Winning the HPBExpo.
Tailgate & Big Green Egg Cook-off Competition
Thursday, March 12 • 5:00pm-7:30pm • Outdoor Burn Cook-off Tent Booth #4288

Come join the Outdoor Burn Area exhibitors the 9th annual HPBExpo Tailgate & Big Green Egg Cook-off event. 

  • Big Green Egg Cook-Off
  • Tailgating with Games & Drinks
  • Extended Exhibitor Booth Hours
  • Mardi Gras Parade & Music

See products in action, sample food, and tailgate with new friends while immersed in vibrant, NOLA-infused revelry. Teams will be battling for bragging rights before a panel of esteemed judges. There is only one team spot don't delay and go for the glory and enter to participate by contacting Kelly VanDermark.  
Sponsored by:
Louisiana Grills -- Effective Demo Strategies & Techniques
Sponsored by:
Friday, March 13 • 1:00pm-3:00pm • Outdoor Burn Area Cook-off Tent Booth #4288

Join Louisiana Grills as we celebrate the launch of our NEW wood pellet grill collection, The Founders Series!

  • Learn trade secrets and expert demo tips
  • Enjoy mouthwatering samples from award winning barbecue champions
  • Enter to win a free grill, prizes and more! 
Get Noticed at HPBExpo 2020
Raise your visibility at Expo with any of the great sponsorship and advertising opportunities available to exhibitors and non-exhibitors. Contact Stacy Bowdring .
Connect with HPBExpo
Have you received the HPBExpo Brochure? If not, check out all the exciting experiences awaiting you in New Orleans.  
Expo Education Spotlight
Each month, we will highlight one of our education sessions scheduled for HPBExpo 2020 to give you a taste of what you can learn if you attend.
HPBA Hearth & BBQ Consumer Research Survey Results
Cameron Downs

If you’ve ever wondered exactly how consumers use their fireplaces or how they feel about their grills, HPBA has research to help. This year, Cameron Downs, Senior Manager – Research, will be on hand to present results from the 2018 State of the Hearth Market and the 2019 State of the Barbecue Market reports in this exclusive HPBExpo offering.

Cameron will go over ownership rates, purchase intent, product usage, demographics, and overall attitudes. This class will also discuss some implications for businesses in the industry and how you can use this data when making decisions in your company. You’ll also learn where to get this data from HPBA, as well as other assistance the HPBA research team can provide to you as an HPBA member.  

This class is Expo Exclusive and will not be available Online at a later date.

To attend Cameron's class on Wednesday March 11th in New Orleans, be sure to get your Education Passport by clicking below.
New Product Spotlight Sessions 
Attend a presentation on select New Products in the New Product Pavilion – hear direct from the exhibitors, live in the New Product Pavilion, about their new featured products! A schedule of these presentations will be available in the Show Guide, the Mobile App, and on signage in the Pavilion onsite. Exhibitor entries are now being accepted for the New Product Pavilion . Each product entered will also be an eligible entry for the 2020 Attendees' Choice Awards, in which attendees will vote for their choice of most-marketable new product in both Hearth and Outdoor Living categories. Space is limited! Contact Amy Jackson with questions.
HPBExpo 2021 Priority Booth & Housing Selection
Nashville, TN March 3-6, 2021
Exhibitors should take advantage of the opportunity to select prime booth space for the 2021 Expo in Nashville, TN. Appointment times for priority point holders will be posted online by the end of February. If you have questions or are interested in priority exhibit space, visit the Priority Booth 2657 during the following hours:
Thursday, March 12 (1:00pm-5:00pm);
Friday, March 13 (9:00am-5:00pm)’; and,
 Saturday, March 14 (9:00am-12:30pm). 
HPBExpo 2021 Housing Selection
HPBExpo's official housing partner, onPeak, will be on-site taking attendee and exhibitor hotel reservations for HPBExpo 2021 in Nashville, TN. HPBExpo 2021 housing reservations will be made on a first-come, first-served basis in Registration and in the exhibit hall across from booth 2457.
HPBA Annual Shipments Data Collection Now Open
Data collection for HPBA’s 2019 Manufacturers’ Shipment Report (MSR) is now open. Eligible hearth appliance and accessory manufacturers are encouraged to participate by sharing their 2019 shipment information. Participation is the only way to receive detailed shipment trends and data at the product level. Rest assured, your company’s individual shipment data is never disclosed or shared. This data is an asset for the Association as it pursues its advocacy and promotional work, and provides participants with another piece of data for planning their business strategy. If you are interested in participating or have questions about the MSR, please contact Cameron Downs
Promoting the Biomass Stove Tax Credit
As you know, the biomass stove tax credit of $300 was extended for purchases made since January 1, 2018 until December 31, 2020. Tax forms are now updated, and tax preparation software should also reflect the extension of this credit. Download our quick reference one-pager on what consumers need to know. Visit our website for everything you need to know about this tax credit and how to find out which products qualify, and more. HPBA has worked diligently to create resources that you can use to promote the tax credit to your customers. Follow HPBA on Facebook and share some of our tax credit social media posts with your followers. 
Government Affairs
New U.S. Federal Law Impacts Licensing for Spouses of Military Personnel

A new law was enacted recently that impacts a small group of Americans: spouses of military personnel who have an occupational license whose spouse is relocated due to a permanent change of duty station to another state.

Over 34 percent of military spouses work in fields that require a state license in order to practice. These spouses are often required to recertify and pay to recertify this license every time they move between states with their spouse. The law directs the Secretary of Defense to enter into a cooperative agreement with the Council of State Governments to assist with funding the development of interstate compacts on licensed occupations. This will alleviate the burden associated with relicensing in such an occupation by spouse of a members of the armed forces in connection with a permanent change of duty station of members to another state.

If you are impacted by this new law, we want to know. Please contact Rachel Feinstein
NSPS Proposed Rule Being Reviewed by White House 

On January 28th, the White House’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) officially noticed its receipt of EPA’s Proposed Rule on pellet standards and sell-through.

While under review, OIRA staff is limited in what they can share about the package but can meet with interested parties to discuss items of particular concern in the rulemakings. Since the notice indicates the package is not economically significant, HPBA anticipates that sell-through was not included for some or all of the products covered by the NSPS.

We will be meeting with OIRA in the weeks to come to make one last attempt, as envisioned by the November 2018 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on sell-through, “to ensure that the full 5-year compliance period is available so that consumers, manufacturers, and retailers are not adversely affected.” 
Affiliate Spotlight – Midwest HPBA
This month we are applauding Midwest HPBA and the work they are doing to try to improve legislation in Missouri. The legislation was introduced in 2018 and seems like an innocuous attempt to streamline licensing requirements. From the very start, Erica Geil, the Executive Director of Midwest HPBA, and its members have worked to ensure that no unintended harm is done by this piece of legislation. The problem for our industry is that it puts our service professionals under the HVAC umbrella, similar to the NJ situation that was thankfully resolved last year. This licensing requirement would add an undue burden as our hearth professionals would either need to get this specific license or hire an HVAC contractor to oversee their work. Neither option is acceptable as our industry has its own excellent training and certification specific to hearth products through NFI (unlike HVAC licensees) and does not need supervision from other industries.

On Monday, January 27, 35 hearth dealers and sweeps attended a Missouri Senate hearing on the legislation and spoke in opposition. These efforts have finally gotten the attention of the state Senate leaders who have jurisdiction over the bill. Members continue to send emails to their state Senators urging them not to support the bill, and Midwest HPBA continues conversations with the legislature to address our concerns.

We commend Midwest HPBA’s Missouri members and leaders who have put a large amount of effort into addressing this bill. If you have any questions about the effort, please contact Erica Geil .
HPBA Update on the USMCA
At the end of January, President Trump signed the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) into law, replacing the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). As Mexico has already signed the USMCA into law, once Canada enacts the agreement, it will officially become law for the three participating countries. The deal includes a “sunset clause,” requiring that the deal expire after 16 years unless a new deal is negotiated and that it be subject to review every six years. HPBA will provide more analysis of the USMCA in the coming months. 
Vesta Awards Ceremony and Wine Reception
In addition to the New Product Pavilion, new products can be entered for Hearth & Home magazine's Vesta Awards. The Vesta Awards Ceremony will begin with a wine reception at 4:45pm on Friday, March 13, at HPBExpo 2020! Winners and finalists will be featured in Hearth & Home’s April issue. Now in its 20th year, the Vesta Awards are a respected and prestigious part of the HPBExpo. Deadline for submission is February 21, 2020. Submit an entry for the Vesta Awards by clicking below.
HPBA has a new banking relationship with Bank of America, and our SunTrust accounts are now closed. For wiring information, please contact Robert Washington .

Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association
P.O. Box 412397
Boston, MA 02241-2397