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America Outdoors E-Bulletin
May 16, 2006


 
Contents:
Association Health Insurance Bill Narrowly Defeated in U.S. Senate AO Database Marketing Project Ready for Data Upload
Forest Service Notifying Permittees about Cost Recovery for Permit Administration Biobased Products Available

Association Health Insurance Bill
Narrowly Defeated in U.S. Senate
 

The bill to allow associations and small businesses to band together nationally to negotiate and provide more affordable health insurance options died last week in the face of opposition from state insurance regulators who do not want to sacrifice state regulatory authority and power over health insurance. The bill drew 55 votes in support, five votes short of the 60 necessary to cut off debate. According to MSNBC, Democrats blocked the motion that would have ended debate. The bill's primary sponsor Mike Enzi (R-WY) vowed to try for passage again this fall.

Health insurance is currently regulated at the state level resulting in a dizzying array of coverage requirements with as many different sets of coverage and regulatory requirements as there are states. The Health Insurance Marketplace Modernization and Affordability Act (S 1955) would allow associations to negotiate national plans without gaining approval from each individual state. Enzi said the bill would generate savings on health insurance by allowing companies to band together when buying insurance, which lowers administrative costs and gives them more clout when negotiating rates. Democrats argued that the plans might eliminate coverage for treatments such as mental health care and alcoholism treatment. But Enzi countered that associations would seek the broadest and best coverage available in order to be competitive with state regulated health care plans. The bill may come up again this fall when both sides are ready to cut deals.

AO Database Marketing Project Ready for Data Upload
 

Work is now complete on the Database Marketing Upload web page. The web page will allow participating companies to upload their customer and/or prospect files using standardized labeling conventions to a secure FTP site. Only the database analyst and your company will have access to the data. You must participate in the database upload to be eligible to get a report profiling your customers. You will need at least 5,000 current records to get a reliable profile of your customers. What you learn about your customers will help you with your marketing and advertising strategies. Learn how many have children, their ages, what they read, what they listen to and more. Call David Brown in the AO office to sign up 800-524-4814, or send an email to dbrown@americaoutdoors.org

Pre-registered companies will receive upload instructions this week. You must sign an agreement with AO to be able to participate in the database marketing program. Cost for uploading data is $2.50 per 1,000 records or $250 minimum which ever is higher. Profile reports will cost between $1,200 and $2,600 depending on the number of participants.

Forest Service Notifying Permittees about Cost Recovery for Permit Administration
 

This month the Forest Service began notifying permittees that the agency will begin recovering the costs for certain actions related to permit administration. Permittees should make note of two important exemptions from cost recovery for recreation permits.

1. Processing costs for recreation special use permits, including renewals that take less than 50 hours, are exempted from cost recovery. Once the process takes over 50 hours, full cost recovery takes effect.

2. Monitoring for permit compliance and some other permit administration tasks are exempted from cost recovery. The following are not considered monitoring and therefore not subject to cost recovery: "billings, maintenance of case files, annual performance evaluations, or scheduled inspections to determine compliance generally with the terms and conditions of an authorization."

Cost recovery may apply:

  1. When outfitters apply for a renewed permit and ask for changes that require more than 50 hours to process;
  2. When there is a change of ownership resulting in a new authorization and the agency requires more than 50 hours of work;
  3. When modification of an existing permit requires more than 50 hours;
  4. For evaluation of applications and proposals for permits for new opportunities;
  5. The agency may also charge for NEPA analyses and other studies related to permitted activities when those studies are not "programmatic".

Biobased Products Available
  The United Soybean Board (USB) publishes a list of biobased products that are available to agencies through the GSA or Department of Defense. While AO does not endorse or recommend these products, we are providing this list for your information in the event you are participating in your own greening initiative:

Cleaning Products
  • Gemtek Products, LLC - #GS-07F-5942R Aqueous Cleaner Concentrate, Multi-Surface Cleaner, Floor & Tile Cleaner, Carpet & Upholstery Shampoo, Dishwashing Liquid, Dishwashing Rinse Aid, Fruit & Vegetable Wash, Oven & Grill Cleaner, Kitchen Exhaust Hood & Filter Cleaner, Laundry Detergent, Laundry Stain Remover, Stainless Steel Cleaner, Concrete Cleaner, Graffiti, Tar & Gum Remover, Aircraft & Metal Cleaner, and Safety Solvent.
  • Soy Technologies, LLC (through the A-1 Supply Co.) - #GS-07F-6074R Parts Cleaners and Degreasers, Paint Strippers, Adhesive, Graffiti and Mastic Removers, Stainless Steel Cleaner, Hand Cleaner, and All Purpose Cleaner Concentrate.
  • Franmar Chemical, Inc. - #GS-06F-0034N Cleaning Products
  • The Clean Environment Company - #GS-07F-0098K
Soy-Backed Carpet - The following companies have carpet on GSA Schedule that is available with polyurethane backings containing a soy-based polyol:
  • Mohawk - #GS-27F-8440A
  • Designweave (through Commercial Carpets of America) - #GS-27F-0053A
  • Patcraft - (through Commercial Carpets of America) - #GS-27F-0053A
  • Masland (The Dixie Group) - #GS-27F-5049C DoD E-Mall

Lubricants
  • Cargill, Inc.
  • Renewable Lubricants, Inc.
  • Terresolve Technologies, Ltd
This is not intended to be a complete list nor are these products recommended or endorsed by America Outdoors. The list is provided for information only.
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America Outdoors® Inc., PO Box 10847, Knoxville, TN, 37939

America Outdoors Staff Title E-mail address
David L. Brown Executive Director dbrown@americaoutdoors.org
Robin Brown Communications Director robin@americaoutdoors.org
Leah Koski Administrative Assistant office@americaoutdoors.org
Office Phone   865-558-3595
Office Fax   865-558-3598

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