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United States Capitol
Policy Matters
Mark Schumacher
Members need new stimulus action, now!

When the Covid 19 pandemic began, action from Congress was swift and necessary. The CARES Act saved millions of businesses and jobs in the early stages of mandated shutdowns. Here we are months later and many of our members and home furnishing businesses need help again and now. As we know SBA loans and PPP funds allowed many businesses to survive shutdowns in March, April, and May. Many home furnishing retailers managed through lengthy closures and business restrictions to bounce back strongly as the economy started to reopen. Much of what our industry sells is needed by the American people

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Policy Matters
Doug Clark
CPSC continues aggressive recalls

The Consumer Products Safety Commission continues its aggressive push for recalls of furniture products it believes pose danger to children. Most of the products identified are sold online. The latest: Walker Edison Furniture Co. has recalled two models of four-drawer chests, CPSC said in a news release Nov. 4. “The chests do not comply with the performance requirements of the U.S. voluntary industry standard,” the agency said. As a result, they “are unstable if they are not anchored to the wall, posing serious tip-over and entrapment hazards that may result in death or injuries to children.” The Walker Edison units

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Manufacturing
News
Robert Bell
Manufacturers adjust their game amid disrupted supply chains

It’s not much, but furniture retailers can find a sliver of solace knowing they are not alone in the disruption of their supply chains. Main Street mom-and-pop stores to some of the largest global manufacturers have had their worlds upended by the pandemic. The impact of that disruption can be measured in a new study released this month that found 97 percent of more than 600 supply chain professionals polled experienced a supply chain disruption due to the coronavirus. In response, 73 percent of these professionals are already planning major shifts in their supply chain strategies for 2021, including supply base expansions and an increase in inventory levels. Not surprisingly, the home furnishings

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Policy Matters
Doug Clark
Voters reject California tax hike; other initiatives affect retailers

California voters said no to Proposition 15, a measure that would have led to higher taxes on commercial and industrial property. By a narrow margin, furniture retailers were spared a large increase in the cost of doing business. Proposition 15 was just one ballot initiative with real or potential impacts on Home Furnishings Association members. They ranged from marijuana legalization to tax hikes. Here’s a roundup: Arizona Voters said yes to Proposition 207, which legalizes the recreational use of marijuana by adults 21 and older. Employers will retain the right to maintain a drug-free workplace. That leaves questions for employers

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Policy Matters
Doug Clark
After elections, HFA’s advocacy work continues

A new president may take office Jan. 20, but the Home Furnishings Association must continue to project a consistent voice for important industry issues. That was one message delivered by the association’s CEO, Mark Schumacher, and lobbyist Chris Andresen in an HFA Live webinar as votes were still being counted across the country Nov. 5. Democratic former Vice President Joe Biden was leading Republican President Donald Trump and now appears to have secured enough electoral votes to win. No matter who is in power, however, the HFA and its Government Relations Action Team must keep up advocacy outreach to the

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News
Doug Clark
Smith Leonard echoes Piper Sandler-HFA survey

August saw the largest increase of the year in new home furnishings orders, according to the latest Smith Leonard monthly survey of manufacturers and distributors. The findings reinforce the recently released results of a third-quarter sampling of furniture retailers by Piper Sandler and the Home Furnishings Association. [Furniture retailers expect continuing surge in sales, survey finds] Smith Leonard, a High Point, N.C., accounting and consulting firm, said its respondents reported a 51 percent jump in August orders over the same month in 2019. That followed increases of 30 percent and 39 percent in June and July, respectively. But, also echoing

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More From The HFA

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Congress and the Trump administration are preparing another Covid-19 relief package. The Home Furnishings Association’s Washington representative, Chris Andresen, and government relations liaison Doug Clark

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Everyone is trying to figure out what the “new normal” will look like when your stores reopen. What will recovery look like to you and

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HFA Members