Registration period open for CMU Checkoff Referendum

Eligible manufacturers can now register with the Department of Commerce to participate in the referendum to establish the CMU Checkoff program.

Beginning May 4, 2021 producers of concrete masonry units can register to participate in the referendum to establish the CMU Checkoff program. Registration will run for a minimum of 30 days, and in order to participate in the referendum, a producer must register by the deadline.

As background, A Checkoff is an industry-wide, coordinated and continuous program of research, promotion, and education to support specific generic products. Checkoff programs allow commodity producers to raise funds through self-imposed mandatory assessments. Efforts to develop a Checkoff program for CMU have been in motion for over 11 years. In 2018, Congress authorized establishment of the program, which only comes into effect after an affirmative vote of the concrete block producers who would be subject to the assessment. Subsequent to the action of Congress, the Department of Commerce issued the draft order that details the Checkoff program in 2020.

On May 3, the start of the registration period was announced in the Federal Register. This is the next step in the development of the program. To be eligible to vote in the referendum, a company must be engaged in producing concrete masonry units, and have produced such units at some point in the past six months. In addition to the details of referendum registration, this Federal Register notice included responses to public comments received regarding the Federal Register proposed referendum procedures first published on October 14, 2020.

Eligible companies will receive a registration form in the mail, along with a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Both sides of the registration form need to be completed and signed by the authorized representative for your company. You also can fax both sides of the completed form to (301) 278-9099. Only the authorized representatives of eligible voting manufacturers should complete the form and sign. The form can also be downloaded from the Department of Commerce website.

All eligible concrete block producers are urged to register as soon as possible. The date the registration period will end is not yet known, and it will be published in a future Federal Register notice. It is known that the registration period will run for a minimum of 30 days, starting on May 4.

More details on the CMU Checkoff program, including benefits to the industry and the vision for how funds will be allocated to increase concrete masonry market share, can be found at

Information can also be found on the Department of Commerce website. Questions on the registration process can be directed to Michael Thompson at Michael.Thompson@Trade.Gov.


Published May 5, 2021
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