Public Policy


Jan 9, 2018

Dec 2017 Monthly Public Policy Report

Each month LobbyIt prepares a report for AWFS on public policy and legislative updates. The Dec 2017 report address the tax bill, the upcoming AWFS/WMMA DC fly-in and skilled workforce-related legislation. Read more…

Dec 6, 2017

Apprenticeship Updates

You may be seeing a lot of news and information about apprenticeships. Legislators, industry and education are recognizing how critical apprenticeships are to strengthening our skilled workforce. Read on for some recent developments…

Nov 3, 2017

Your Voice Needed NOW on Apprenticeship

The PARTNERS Act of 2017 is a bipartisan bill that would support partnerships between business and local workforce stakeholders Read more…


March 29, 2017

U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation Hearing:

Closing the Skills Gap and Boosting U.S. Competitiveness” Read more…


March 1, 2017

U.S. House Committee on Education and the Workforce Hearing:

Providing More Students a Pathway to Success by Strengthening Access to Career and Technical Education” Read more…


February 28, 2017

AWFS and Other Trade Groups Call on Legislators

Members of the AWFS Public Policy Committee, along with nearly 40 other individuals from wood products manufacturing trade associations and their member companies, flew to Capitol Hill the week of February 13, calling on over three dozen legislative offices…Read more…


December 13, 2016

What woodworkers need to know about the EPA Formaldehyde Regulation

Woodworking Network (12/12) reports that “The federal regulation that definitively addresses formaldehyde emissions from composite wood products sold in the United States was published in the Federal Register on Dec. 12, 2016, by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.” Read more…


August 2, 2016

EPA says mushroom-based panel and resins meet new formaldehyde rules

Woodworking Network (7/29) reports that “Ecovative’s formula for biofabricating MycoBoard panels as an innovative alternative to the traditional manufacturing of particle board and other composite wood products” Read more…


July 28, 2016

EPA Issues Wood Products Formaldehyde Rule, Guided by CARB

Woodworking Network (7/27, Esler) reports that “the  EPA moved to reduce exposure to formaldehyde vapors from laminate panel and engineered wood products produced domestically or imported into the United States.” Read more…


June 7, 2016

Senate Unanimously Approves Update To Toxic Substances Control Act

The Washington Post (6/7, Eilperin) reports the Senate on Tuesday evening, through a voice vote, “unanimously” passed legislation updating the 40-year-old Toxic Substances Control Act, or TSCA, clearing the way for President Obama’s signature. Read more…

Sept 15, 2015

AWFS Members Call on Legislators in D.C. to Support Career Technical Education, Industry-Affecting Legislation

Members of the AWFS Public Policy Committee and two staff called on the offices of 16 legislators in Washington on September 15, to encourage support for Career Technical Education (CTE), federal formaldehyde legislation that is in sync with the California Air Resources Board and balanced decision making related to Combustible Dust. Read more…

AWFS Legislative Involvement

AWFS® is dedicated to public policy efforts reflecting the specific interests of its members and those of the broader wood products manufacturing industry. Members of the AWFS Public Policy Committee stay abreast of emerging trends and take action to neutralize potential threats. The association is active at the state and federal level through participation in coalitions working on issues directly impacting wood products, such as formaldehyde regulations, and through an annual “Public Policy Fly-In” to Washington, D.C.  Members meet with their representatives to advocate around issues that keep the U.S. manufacturing base strong and competitive and to express support for Career Technical Education programs and funding to ensure tomorrow’s workforce.



The Federal Wood Industries Coalition is a group of industry trade associations (including AWFS) working collaboratively with CARB and EPA to address language in the Airborne Toxic Control Measure (ATCM) related to formaldehyde emissions. They have drafted a letter with suggested changes to the measure as written so that no undue burden is placed on wood products manufacturers. The Composite Panel Association, who is taking the lead on it, has comprehensive information on their web site, including the letter and a listing of the associations in the coalition.  Click here to view more information.

Combustible Dust

OSHA is in the process of preparing new regulations pertaining to combustible dust that will affect the wood products manufacturing industry. Woodworking is considered three-times riskier than other industries by insurers and going forward, combustible dust will likely be classified as a hazardous chemical. Companies should be well-informed, equipment compliant and appropriate for the size of operations and employees well-trained. For clear-cut information on combustible dust, click here.

Related Links

California Environmental Protection Agency (Cal/EPA)

California Air Resources Board (CARB)

Combustible Dust Info – OSHA

Formaldehyde Emissions from Composite Wood Products (EPA)

Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA)

State of California Dept. of Industrial Relations (CalOSHA)

Technology Transfer Network Air Toxics Website (EPA)
Rule & Implementation for Wood Furniture Manufacturing 

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

U.S. House of Representatives
Find your Rep

membership directory
and source guide Now online