Fiscal cliff package includes estate tax fix, Farm Bill extension
This week, Congress passed and the president signed legislation to get past the so-called "fiscal cliff," which would have raised income tax rates on most taxpayers while also forcing extensive federal budget cuts. As a result, income taxes will go up on only higher earners, and the so-called "sequester" cuts were postponed. The bill includes several provisions beneficial to nurseries. It extends the most recent Farm Bill, which had expired, for one year. Additionally, it includes permanent and very significant estate tax relief for family-owned businesses. For a complete run-down of all these provisions, read this article — written exclusively for OAN members (password required) — by OAN federal lobbyist Louie Perry of Cornerstone Government Affairs in Washington, D.C.
Report: Administration to push for comprehensive immigration reform
The beginning of a new year brings a "reset" to our nation's capital — a new Congress, a new cabinet, and new political calculus. Given the demographic breakdowns in the 2012 election results, as well as the mild economic recovery, some observers expect to see a push for long-awaited comprehensive immigration reform. An administration official, speaking anonymously, said the administration will make a push this month. However, others reportedly have expressed concern that continuing federal debt battles and a push for tighter gun control could divert much-needed energy and attention. Last month, a report surfaced that a so-called "gang of eight" senators started discussions of how to win immigration reform. The OAN continues to support comprehensive reform and has successfully opposed piecemeal state and local legislation in Oregon.
Ag census lets growers stand and be counted
For U.S. residents, census year was a few years ago. For farmers and ranchers, however, there's an equally important census that's taking place right now. The U.S. Census of Agriculture happens every five years. All farmers and ranchers are required to participate, and that includes nurseries and greenhouses, too. Forms must be returned either by mail or online, and all information is kept confidential. By returning their census form, growers can ensure that the size and scope of agriculture in general, and nurseries in particular, are properly represented in government decision making. Watch you mail or click here to respond.
OAN seminars set for NW Ag Show
The Oregon Association of Nurseries will present four hours of grower seminars from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 30 at day two of the three-day NW Ag Show, which is held at the Portland Expo Center, 2060 N. Marine Drive, Portland, Ore. Your paid seminar registration includes admission to the expo floor. The seminar topics are "The Latest on Box Blight and Impatiens Downy Mildew," "Understanding Pesticide Drift for the Protection of Water Resources," and "Bee Friendly Insecticide Management." These sessions have been submitted to Oregon and Washington for recertification credits. Register online today.
University of Arizona offers online course in plant physiology
The University of Arizona Outreach College is offering an online, non-credit course in Greenhouse Plant Physiology. The subject matter is taught at an upper college level, and covers major greenhouse environmental factors affecting plant growth and development. A complete description is posted here, and a course flier can be downloaded here (PDF). The program cost is $728, and the deadline to enroll is next Monday, Jan. 7. Follow this link to register. The instructor, Prof. Chieri Kubota, can be reached at email@example.com.
Registration open for High Desert Green Industry Conference
The 21st annual High Desert Green Industry Conference will be held Wednesday–Thursday, Feb. 13–14 at the Deschutes County Fair & Expo Center, 3800 SW Airport Way, Redmond, Ore. The keynote speaker will be Elizabeth Peters, director of the OAN Lean Team, who will discuss the principles and practices that you and your team can use to create an environment for success. Other presenters are still to be announced. The conference and trade show is designed for green industry professionals who supply, design, maintain or manage landscapes in the Intermountain West. It is presented in partnership by the Oregon State University Extension Service, the Oregon Department of Forestry, and the Oregon Landscape Contractors Association. Register online today.
Recruit a new member and earn OAN Bucks
OAN membership has always delivered value that's worth sharing, but now it's more true than ever. When you sign up a new member, you get OAN Bucks, which are good toward association services! Here's how it works:
1. Sign 'em up. Sign up a new member company and receive $100 in "OAN Bucks." A new member is any company that has never been an OAN member, or hasn't been since 2009.
2. Get the credit. When they fill out the membership form, just make sure your name is written in the "sponsored by" blank.
3. Redeem it! OAN Bucks can be applied toward the cost of association services, such as advertising, trade booth fees and so on — even your dues for 2013! You must be a fully paid OAN member to participate in the program. Other restrictions apply.
To get started, download the new member form (PDF). You may also want to use a leaflet, Getting the Most from your OAN Membership (PDF), to help them understand all the benefits that membership entails. For complete details, log on to www.oan.org/oanbucks or call Debbie Hopkins at 503-682-5089 (Portland area) or 800-342-6401 (toll free).
Save money with the Winter Trucks to Trade Shows program
The OAN Winter Trucks to Trade Shows program ships member plant material to the key nursery trade shows held in January and February across the country. Check this out: one of our members just reported that by participating in the OAN Trucks to Trade Shows program, he saved $509 on his shipment of two pallets of plant material to MANTS! This program is an exclusive OAN member benefit. To sign up for economical, less-than-load shipping to all the major winter trade shows, download and submit this form, or contact Ann Murphy at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the January issue of Digger, an incorrect phone number for Peace of Mind Nursery appeared in that nursery's State of Perfection profile. It was the result of a production error. The correct number is 503-949-4944. We regret the error and apologize for any inconvenience.
Dorothy "Dot" Rogers
The Oregon Association of Nurseries has received word, and is saddened to report, that Dorothy "Dot" Rogers passed away on Dec. 13, 2012 at age 88. Services were held Dec. 21. Dorothy founded Caprice Peony Farm in Sherwood, together with her husband, Allan, who survives. They operated the nursery for many years. Their son, Rick, owns Brothers Herbs & Peonies, also in Sherwood. Memorial donations are suggested to Countryside Living in Canby, or to Bristol Hospice. The Oregonian's full obituary may be viewed online.
Northwest Agricultural Show
♦ January 29 - 31 - Northwest Agricultural Show
OAN Seminar Series at the NW Ag Show
♦ January 30 - OAN Seminar Series at the Northwest Agricultural Show
Emerald Empire Meeting
♦ February 6 - What's new on the fertilizer and cchemical front
Yard, Garden & Patio Show
♦ February 8 - 10 - Join us for the Yard, Garden & Patio Show, presented by Dennis' Seven Dees Landscaping & Garden Centers
Retail & Greenhouse Chapters
♦ February 21 - Annual Industry Seminars
OAN reminds members: If you're not seen, you don't exist
Are you looking to stay visible and gain new customers? OAN events, publications and websites offer fantastic exposure at an excellent price. OAN members save the most, with discounted ad and sponsorship rates. Buy into multiple publications, or multiple issues of Digger, and save even more. Want the details? Our 2013 Exposure Kit is now available. Download it today at www.oan.org/ads2013. To lock in your ads for 2013, contact Advertising and Sponsorship Account Manager Chris Sweet at 503-682-2012 or email@example.com.