GCSAA Supports NALP Lobby Day, Landscape Service Event at Arlington National Cemetery
GCSAA’s Director of Government Affairs Chava McKeel and Director of Congressional & Federal Affairs Bob Helland participated in the National Association of Landscape Professional’s (NALP) Renewal & Remembrance at Arlington National Cemetery on Monday, July 11, 2016. The pair also participated in NALP’s Legislative Day on the Hill on Tuesday, July 12, 2016 on Capitol Hill.
NALP represents an industry that employs nearly 1 million landscape, lawn care, irrigation and tree care professionals who create and maintain healthy green spaces for the benefit of society and the environment. For more information, visit LoveYourLandscape.org. GCSAA and NALP regularly work on issues of mutual interest including WOTUS, overtime pay rule, H-2B visa program and pesticide regulation.
This marks the 20th year that the lawn care profession has worked to help care for Arlington National Cemetery, the national burial ground that serves as the final resting spot for more than 400,000 military service men and women and their spouses.
Every July, hundreds of landscape and lawn care professionals come from across the nation to Arlington National Cemetery to participate in Renewal & Remembrance. They volunteer their time mulching, upgrading sprinklers, cabling and installing lightning protection for the trees, pruning, planting, liming and aerating the soil. McKeel and Helland were captains for the We The People team and helped aerify 9 acres of the grounds.
“Our members look forward to this opportunity each year to give back to the individuals who made personal sacrifices for their country,” said Sabeena Hickman, CAE, NALP CEO. “We consider it a privilege to be able to volunteer our time and talents to improve the health and beauty of the grounds at Arlington National Cemetery, one of our nation’s most sacred places.”
Also participating in the event were the National Hispanic Landscape Alliance and the Professional Grounds Management Society.
On Legislative Day on the Hill, McKeel and Helland joined with landscape and lawn care professionals from around the nation on Capitol Hill to meet with their senators and representatives and discuss a wide array of issues that impact green industry businesses and address the value healthy turfgrass offers families, their communities, and the environment.
GCSAA staff spent time in Ohio and Maryland Congressional offices talking about the H-2B visa program and pesticide regulation. It is important that Congress continue to preserve and protect the temporary, seasonal visa program and also encourages EPA to ensure that pesticide policies are based on sound scientific principles and consider the important benefits associated with pesticide products so that our green industries will continue to have access to important EPA-approved pesticide products.