Editor's note: This column was published in the current edition of Oklahoma Builder magazine
By Kurt Dinnes
I hope this article finds you busy within our industry. Fall is always a much anticipated time of year as we finally start getting some relief from the heat of the summer. If you are like most builders, you too are working diligently to get homes started and dried-in before the winter weather has a chance to delay our building. Soon, we may be wishing we had some of that warmer and drier weather we enjoyed this fall. Either way, the upcoming holiday season brings out the best in us all, reminding us all how truly blessed we are to have great friends, family and to serve in an industry that brings us all together in a place called HOME.
Since our OSHBA membership includes members from all over our great state and many of you do not always have the time or opportunity to attend events or state meetings, I hope this message helps serve as your insight as to what your OSHBA is doing on behalf of our industry and you as a member. Your Oklahoma State Home Builders Leadership has been very busy over the last few months working hard on behalf of our membership.
First and foremost, I would like to thank all of our sponsors, suppliers, manufacturers and attendees of this year’s Oklahoma Building Summit and Expo. This was our second year combining the extensive education venues with an industry trade show. With the trade show sold out and attendance up considerably, this year’s summit was better than ever, providing diverse educational speakers, product and supplier information and great networking opportunities for all.
A very special thanks to our summit committee and its Chairman Dan Reeves. Thanks again to all who participated and attended this year. Please make plans to attend next year’s event Sept. 27-28th!
Uniform Building Code info, a service to you
Over the last year or so, the Oklahoma Uniform Building Codes Commission under the leadership of our member Curtis McCarty has been hard at work sorting out what will become our new State Building Code as of the Nov. 1 this year. As we transition from the 2009 IRC to the 2015 IRC, the OSHBA education provided, not only at the summit but at your Local HBAs concerning these code changes, will be another very important benefit of your membership.
Charity golf tourney
The OSHBA golf tournament was held in October at Rose Creek Golf Club. We had a great turnout with the proceeds going to Rebuilding Together OKC. The annual OSHBA golf tournament put on by our Associates Council is a great way to network, have a blast and give back to our community. I personally am not a big golfer, but I think I had more fun as a volunteer than even the serious golfers. So whether you are a golfer or not, I would encourage you to come out next year and participate.
New strategic plan
At the end of August, approximately 20 members, made up of your executive board and selected volunteer members from around the state gathered in Carlton Landing on beautiful Lake Eufaula to develop a new three-year Strategic Plan for OSHBA. With the help of a NAHB moderator, trained to assist with strategic planning, we put together our new OSHBA three-year Strategic Plan. This was our second three-year strategic planning session utilizing the help provided by the NAHB.
Strategic planning has become a vital part of our OSHBA future. You may or may not remember, but three years ago at our last strategic planning session, one of the key takeaways was the elimination of the state convention in favor of expanding and renaming the Building Summit. As a result of that strategic planning, the new Oklahoma Building Summit & Expo was formed.
Although in our new Strategic Plan the Mission Statement and Big Audacious Goal remain the same, there are some new key directions that will be explored.
OSHBA's statewide advocacy efforts are never ending and, with the November elections, we were busier than ever. Each year when the Oklahoma legislative session opens, we have a statewide Capitol day. We, as OSHBA members, gathered together to represent our industry and collectively we meet with our local legislators concerning issues and legislation that affects our industry. Also, throughout the session, we encourage each member to actively participate in the Voters Voice Program. This program is a very simple way to get our unified message across to your local legislators as to how a proposed bill will affect our industry and it comes directly from your email to them. Each year we encourage all members to consider a PAC donation to the NAHB BuildPAC or directly to our StatePAC. Each two-year election cycle, the NAHB sets a BuildPAC fundraising goal for each state. Once our state’s goal is met, 50 percent of the contributions go back to our StatePAC fund to be used for local candidates who support our industry.
Did you know that currently our state is over 200 percent of our 2015-2016 election cycle goals? That's right, we have eight Capitol Club members, three Platinum Club members and 25 Gold Key members, and many Fair Share donators across the state. This year, your StatePAC has supported and been involved in 79 political races statewide in the primary. Out of those 79, many moved on to the general election with the candidate we are supporting favored. We lost nine of the races in which we contributed. Proving "The best man (or woman)" doesn’t always win. But so far, we are on an 87 percent winning streak.
Just a quick reminder: Our next StatePAC fundraiser will be our Sporting Clays event scheduled for March 31. I hope to see you there!
New to the board in 2017…
Our State Fall Board of Directors meeting was at the Tulsa HBA's newly renovated headquarters. Along with the normal business of the Association conducted, we projected finishing the year in the black and passed our 2017 annual budget. Our new three-year Strategic Plan and our By-Law amendments, primarily complying with the new NAHB requirements concerning Local Associations and Charters, were approved and passed. We also approved our new 2017 Executive Officers starting with our newest officer Steve Allen as VP and Secretary, David Blackburn as VP and Treasurer, Dan Reeves as our incoming President and me as your Past President. Chris Evens is our incoming Associates Council President. Congratulations to all our 2017 Executive Officers. Be sure and mark your calendars for the 2017 Installation and Hall of Fame Induction Banquet on Jan. 21 at the Renaissance Hotel in downtown OKC.
Want to save just over $3,000?
Lastly, I would like to talk "Dollars and Cents" with you concerning the added value of OSHBA Membership. Now I do not mean to sound like a broken record, but at the risk of doing so, this just makes "Cents". Do you realize that if you take advantage of the state-endorsed insurance programs and the State Rebate Program, an average member can save approximately $3,029.21? That's right, let me break it down:
-- The Workers-Comp. program through CompSource saves on average about $400;
-- The General Liability program from Mid-Continent through HUB saves on average about $1,200;
-- If you are a Certified Professional Builder (CPB) that's an additional average savings of $250;
-- The State Rebate Program can EARN the average builder member about $1,179.29.
Also, if you take advantage of the customizable State Contract and the State Warranty documents, your annual legal expenses might be less.
So let's recap:
Your State Membership is more than just advocacy, education and networking. Your membership, if you participate, doesn’t just SAVE you money but can MAKE you money! That just makes good "Cents". So let's spread the word to others as we recruit new members. Let them know “participating membership has its rewards.”
I must say it is truly been an honor and a privilege to serve this year as your OSHBA President. So let's continue to all do what we do best build quality, safe and affordable homes in Oklahoma. May you and yours’ be blessed.
Kurt Dinnes is president of OSHBA and state rep to NAHB. He can be contacted at email@example.com or at (405) 641-2154. His column in its entirety may be read at www.okhba.org under ‘What’s new’.