2020 was certainly an interesting year in the legislative arena. The Vinyl Siding Institute (VSI) entered the year with active legislation in Georgia, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Minnesota, Indiana and Kansas.
We ended the year with success in Oklahoma – one that was against all odds as sessions across the country were entirely derailed once the COVID-19 pandemic hit. And in Georgia, Tennessee and Minnesota, when the sessions adjourned due to the pandemic, they anticipated returning a few weeks later. However, that was not the case in any state. In fact, most states, rightly, focused solely on budgetary and emergency legislation.
Fortunately, VSI was able to add Oklahoma to our list of successes – which also includes Texas, North Carolina and Arkansas to date.
2021 is shaping up to be an equally interesting year.
The number one issue on the table across American legislatures is how legislative bodies will handle their sessions. Will in-person meetings be permitted? Will the legislative bodies consider non-COVID 19 -related legislation? Without a federal stimulus bill, will there be an appetite at the state level for optically less pressing legislation?
As it stands, VSI will be focused on and involved with legislation in Tennessee, Minnesota and Indiana. Our relationships in these states are strong – and we are optimistic that we can make strides in the upcoming session. We will know in December whether or not Georgia will be a possibility in 2021 or have to wait until 2022.
Most legislative sessions will commence in earnest in January 2021. But the work has already begun. In Tennessee, Indiana and Minnesota our coalition is already organized and actively working on related tasks. In the coming months, watch for communications and calls to action because at the end of the day, legislation of this nature cannot succeed without the grassroots support from our members.