Another GIE+EXPO is behind us, and another great experience for the ASCA at the landscape industry’s annual showcase in Louisville. Here’s a real quick rundown of the top three topics I addressed while meeting one-on-one with contractors.
Legislation. A good number of people I spoke to wanted to hear an update on where legislation stood in their state. Currently, the ASCA’s model legislation, which prohibits property owners’ ability to retain control of when services are provided but shift all of the liability on to snow contractors, is active in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Ohio. These are all states where the ASCA has significant participation from the snow contractor community. We’re working to build our ranks in other states, as well, but it’s an ongoing process.
This brings up an important point, one that I stressed to those I spoke to in Louisville. The ASCA needs snow contractors to step forward and take part in legislative activities. Participation is a huge key to legislative success. And it doesn’t have to be a major effort, either. Something as simple as notifying their elected representatives about legislation under consideration by their state’s assembly has a significant impact. Joining the ASCA for Legislative Day activities in their state capital or in Washington D.C. is another impactful way to get involved and help assure legislative success for the snow and ice management industry.
The old adage that there’s strength in numbers is especially pertinent in having our voices heard by our elected officials.
An introduction to the ASCA. The GIE+EXPO crowd provides us the unique opportunity to get in front of landscape contractors who do snow in the winter months. A fair portion of the ASCA membership considers themselves as snow contractors who do landscape in the summer months – it’s simply how they approach their business. As a result, I found myself retelling the ASCA’s story and how we originated from a desire to find a solution to the insurance questions and how that led to Industry Standards, ISO certification and involvement in legislative affairs. People seemed most interested in hearing more information about our insurance program and how they could get involved. Insurance, or I should say the lack of insurance options, is still a major issue for the professional snow and ice management industry.
What the ASCA can do for you. Once people heard the backstory, the most popular follow-up questions centered around whether the ASCA’s programs really benefit professional snow and ice contractors. I was more than happy to report on our progress and the feedback that’s coming in from throughout the industry. Over the last two years, in cooperation with local snow contractors and the state’s landscape association, we’ve successfully lobbied for the adoption of our model legislation in Illinois and Colorado. As a result, queries about Industry Standards and ISO certification are appearing on the RFPs from significant property owners. Through our insurance program, participating contractors are realizing a significant savings in their costs. All of these signs justify the impact the ASCA has had on industry.