As it happens every three years, a group of ARA members, leadership and staff met in Nashville on January 7 to tackle updating ARA’s Strategic Plan. A larger group of ARA members also gathered the following day to participate in the annual Legislative Summit. Deep dives occurred on updating the “strategic pillars” to reflect growing and evolving industry challenges and opportunities. The Legislative Summit likewise focused on the federal and state legislative and regulatory threats that recyclers will face, and discussions occurred on the positions and resources the association will need to combat critical threats. While in the Nashville area, many attendees were also able to tour the over 10-acre Nissan manufacturing facility.
The Strategic Planning meeting was an outcrop of previous meetings and focused on 4 main “pillars” covering 1) Branding; 2) Non-dues revenue; 3) Government advocacy and 4) Education/Certification/Compliance. Participants broke into small groups and brainstormed methods to achieve the most member benefits for each category and what resources will be needed. An active effort was made to pinpoint metrics for evaluation of goal achievement. More information will be distributed as notes are compiled and minutes are finalized.
Over 40 attendees participated in the Legislative Summit and representatives from the Auto Care Association and Copart joined recycler members from the U.S. and Canada. The group built on the previous day’s “Government Advocacy” pillar and explored the numerous challenges while trying to prioritize them and discuss tactics and strategies. The issues identified included OEM repair procedures, access to data and right to repair, batteries, recalls and NHTSA, licensing, unlicensed activity, tires, odometer disclosure, electronic filing process (titles), drugs found in cars, sales tax, carbon credits, trade/tariffs and stormwater. A select group of priority issues will be the focus of ARA’s Hill Day at the end of April and more detailed information will be forthcoming on the Summit and the Hill Day.
An enormous note of thanks to all attendees from taking time away from their businesses and providing thoughtful insights into how the association and industry can come together to build a stronger voice for auto recyclers everywhere. The frameworks that resulted will produce documents that will be living and evolving templates for action going forward – thanks to all!