OSBA President’s Newsletter:
March 15th , 2012
From: Dana Stahlman, President of OSBA
One of the major features of my two years of office as President of OSBA is to communicate with the bee organizations in Ohio and the OSBA board officers. I will be sending this communication out to those on my email list. If you want dropped from the list, just let me know to remove you or if you know someone who should be added, let me know. The emails are sent out blind so your emails are not copied and used by non authorized individuals. Please feel free to share the contents of this message with others. I have as a goal to visit every bee association in Ohio this year. If you want me to come to your association meeting and make a beekeeping topic presentation with a little plug for OSBA, contact me early so I can put you on my schedule: email: firstname.lastname@example.org . I plan on sending out news on beekeeping issues in Ohio on a regular basis – Also the OSBA newsletter will be out four times a year. If you are not an OSBA member, consider supporting the work we are doing. Membership is up so far this year, the Master Beekeeper Program is off and running with a tremendous response, and the Ohio Queen Initiative is developing a development model this year to help Ohio beekeeping organizations raise 24 hour queen cells from selected stock.
As a former president of a local beekeeping association, I understand the importance of local associations. They are the first line of contact with beekeepers in their area and are involved in mentoring and sponsoring beekeeping events. Each and every beekeeping association in Ohio has my respect and support for your local activities. Your ideas and suggestions are the way to lead to a better OSBA. OSBA exist to support your local associations, promote beekeeping, and work for the welfare of all beekeepers. OSBA cannot forget it all begins with you.
Points and issues around the state:
1) A letter was sent to County Commissioners by a Knox County beekeeper, Brian Farmer, with three or so years of experience and an ax to grind advocating the end of County bee inspection programs in Ohio. OSBA has responded to his letter. It is important for local organizations to raise their voice and let County Commissioners know that you appreciate what they do for you. Now is not the time to remain silent if you appreciate what your county is doing to support beekeepers. You can visit the OSBA Web site: www.ohiostatebeekeepers.org to see the letter sent to commissioners and the response of OSBA.
2) OSBA has contacted Diana Roll with ODA regarding emergency approval of Hop Guard for Varroa mite treatment. Dr. Johnson has prepared the necessary documents to send to get approval. OSBA is sending a letter as well stating that we consider approval of the product as an emergency need. Hopefully, this will not take long to approve.
3) Regarding OSU: A) OSBA has given a check for $2, 477.50 to Dr. Johnson to support a honey bee research project to be conducted by his graduate student, Doug Sponsler with colonies started from packages in rural and urban settings. More on this research will be published later this fall in the OSBA Newsletter.
B) Denise Ellsworth is doing a great job at the OSU bee lab– OSBA supports her efforts to add to beekeeping education in Ohio. FYI, a reminder the OSU Bee Lab webinar series is a monthly webinar targeted to Ohio beekeepers and anyone else interested in honey bees that is broadcast live the 3rd Wednesday of each month – April thru October – from 9-10 a.m. This free program, which uses the new Adobe Connect web based inter-active format begins April 18. All sessions will be recorded and available for free viewing the following day, and may be found at: http://beelab.osu.edu Individuals can join the contact list by visiting the following link: http://go.osu.edu/beelablist
4) OSBA has entered into a Letter of Agreement with the Ohio Expositions Commission. OSBA has agreed to organize and manage an eight day beekeeping event during the Ohio State Fair from July 29th, to August 5th. The last eight days of the Ohio State Fair! We want to include you in the planning and provide your organization with a chance to showcase what you do in your region of the state.
We are bringing back the honey show to the Ohio State Fair after a number of years without it. OSBA is forming a committee to help determine what and how various events are managed. We want to include all beekeeping associations in Ohio with an opportunity to be involved. If you would like to serve on the committee or if your organization would like be involved with a display, contact me: Dana Stahlman email@example.com OSBA will also be selling vendor space. The location of the honey bee display is the 100 x 60 foot DiSalle Center Patio covered with a tent of the same size. This is located at the main northern entrance to the fairgrounds next to the northern terminal of the sky ride. Most fair traffic enters from this point and we will have plenty of exposure. The Expositions Commission will provide OSBA with PR as a major event at the fair. Expect visits by leading Ohio candidates for political office, important guest possibly even the Governor, and many county commissioners. We have commitments from 4-H, OSU, and several other groups interested in honey bees to set up displays. Help OSBA put your organization on the map.
5) Become involved in support for honey bees and promote the value honey bees give to all of us. A good example of a beekeeping association taking action in reaction to what the Tuscarawas County Commissioners did to not fund the bee inspection program in their county. I applaud what they are doing!
Subject: Tuscarawas County Bee Inspection Program will not be funded
Dear Fellow Beekeepers
During our March club meeting, we learned that the Tuscarawas County Commissioners have decided that they will not fund the county apiary (bee) inspection program for our county for 2012. A letter has been sent to the commissioners on behalf of our club expressing our disappointment and concern that the inspections will not be funded this year. The letter also explains why the inspections are important in disease and pest prevention of hives as well as how the honey bee plays an important role in agriculture in our county.
Our club’s letter is just the first step in our response. We are asking that each county beekeeper and his or her family, friends and neighbors contact the Tuscarawas County Commissions to ask them to reconsider funding for the program. It is only through our grassroots response in sheer numbers that our issues may be addressed.
Not included in this message is their talking points to the commissioners but you can contact them at: firstname.lastname@example.org for information. My comment — dts
Another way that we might “bend the ear” of our commissioners – as well as others in agriculture and who value agriculture – is at next Friday’s Crossroads R & D Ag Appreciation Breakfast on Friday, April 16 at the Brandywine Grange. The cost is $5 for a pancake breakfast. (Many of our area’s political representatives attend.)
Old St Rt 39
Dover, Ohio 44622
For those who did not attend the March meeting, here is another issue that may have impacted the commissioners’ decision. We learned at the Wooster meeting that a beekeeper in Knox County named Brian Farmer has submitted a letter to every county commissioner in every county in Ohio stating his opinion that the county bee inspections are a waste of taxpayer money. He has also created a You Tube video that is very critical of the Knox County inspector, Eric Simpson. We don’t know if he has an axe to grind with his county inspector, but he has now made this a statewide issue due to his letter-writing campaign. The Ohio State Beekeepers have submitted a letter to all county commissioners in response to Mr. Farmer, but we fear Mr. Farmer’s letter may have had an impact on our own county’s funding. I have an electronic copy of Mr. Farmer’s letter and the OSBA response and would be happy to email it to you upon request – I wanted to be respectful of your in-box and not add the attachments unless you requested them.
Thank you for your time and patience in this lengthy, but we felt necessary, message.
Connie Lechleitner, Tuscarawas County Beekeepers Club secretary
My personal thanks to the effort to get the bee inspection program refunded. By the way, I hope I see some of you at Friday’s Crossroads R & D Ag Appreciation Breakfast on Friday, April 16 at the Brandywine Grange. I consider it one of my duties to support local associations when something of this sort happens.