Keller urges House to consider hardwood industry measures

WILLIAMSPORT — Congressman Fred Keller (PA-12) sent a letter to House Leadership recommending additional relief for the hardwood industry, which continues to struggle due to the COVID-19 crisis.

“The U.S. hardwood industry is fully integrated from logging to manufacturing finished consumer goods including flooring, cabinets, and moldings,” the letter reads. “The tissue and paper supplies made of residual chips and dust and the industrial mats, shipping pallets, and railway ties made from hardwood lumber play a crucial role in helping our economy recover from the devastating impacts of COVID-19. Specifically, the hardwood industry is responsible for approximately 1.8 million jobs in mostly rural areas.”

The letter, signed by eight other lawmakers, highlights the major considerations to be included in any additional relief package that would give the hardwood and forest product industry the tools they need to remain operational and begin to recover from the COVID-19 crisis.

On the letter, Dana Lee Cole, Executive Director of the Hardwood Federation, the nation’s largest hardwood industry trade association, made the follow statement:

“We appreciate the leadership of Congressman Keller and the rest of the signatories to this letter. The U.S. hardwood industry has been severely impacted by the double blows struck by the U.S.-China trade dispute and the COVID-19 crisis. The efforts of these Members of Congress to provide relief to the great American companies that are the backbone of so many rural economies is essential to the future of the industry.”

In addition to Keller, signees of the letter include: Congressman Glenn “GT” Thompson (PA-15); Congressman David McKinley (W.Va-01); Congressman Bob Gibbs (OH-07); Congresswoman Ann McLane Kuster (NH-02); Congressman David Kustoff (TN-08); Congressman Bruce Westerman (AR-04); Congressman Mike Kelly (PA-16); Congressman Trent Kelly (MS-01).


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