Attendees gather at the ARA of Kentucky tabletop and seminar, which was held at Bryant’s Rent-All of Lexington.
This year’s ARA of Kentucky tabletop and seminar on theft of services offered the more than 60 members in attendance a powerful package — valuable networking, a delicious meal, a great preview of products that will be offered at The ARA Show™ and an update on efforts to expand the state’s current theft of services statute to include rental.
“The tabletop was good with more vendors and more variety. I had some valuable one-on-one time with the vendors,” says Robbie Seals, owner, Action Rental Center, Berea, Ky. “The theft of services discussion was good, too. I think our members will make a strong push for this after that discussion.”
Scott Bryant, owner, Bryant’s Rent-All of Lexington, Lexington, Ky., who hosted the event at his event rental operation, agrees.
“It went very well. The tabletop portion was great. We had lots of vendors. I was able to talk with most of them. The tabletop is valuable because it allows us to get a preview of what our vendors will have at the show. It helps us get our ducks in a row before we hit the show floor in Orlando,” he says.
Bryant also appreciated the discussion on theft of services. “Kirk Edwards [ARA of Kentucky president]; my dad, Terry Bryant [Bryant’s Rent-All of Lexington], Ian Goff [CERP, Goff Tents & Events in Nicholasville] and Dave Wilcox [General Rental Center in Frankfort] spoke about the efforts the state chapter is making to change our current theft of services statute. We have a sponsor for the bill, but the grassroots effort is important. They asked that we all contact our representatives to share why this change is important,” he adds.
Theft of services was the major topic of the meeting.
Edwards, owner, Kit-Mo Rental & Supply Co., Paducah, Ky., was pleased with how the event went.
“We had nearly 18 vendors at our tabletop, including a new vendor. The information we gain from all the vendors is so important. We could not run our businesses without them. We work with each other. The more we can interact, the better for everyone,” he says.
Edwards also was excited to see the enthusiasm for changing the theft of services statute. “We have a theft of services on the books, but there is not a definition of theft of services for the rental industry. It is not spelled out for rental equipment. The ARA of Kentucky is in the process to try to get that definition in. Kentucky Rep. Matt Lockett, District-39 from Nicholasville, has introduced H.B. 109, but I know he is looking for co-sponsors. Everyone at the meeting was onboard that we need to try to get this changed. This is a short legislative session in Kentucky, and we are trying to make headway. It was introduced last year, but it didn’t go anywhere. This year we are trying to push it harder and asking our members to contact their legislators,” he says.
This event helps Kentucky rental operators make connections. “We share information about what the ARA of Kentucky is doing for members and what we can do to help each other. Of course, especially this year, the legislative part is a huge aspect of it,” Edwards says.
It’s “the camaraderie you receive” at the seminar, Seals adds. “This is a great networking event with peers. We talk to each other on the phone, but this is one of the few times we get to see each other. Once you spend some face-to-face time with each other, it is easy to pick up the phone. Everyone in our association will offer free advice to each other. Yes, we are competitors, but we all get along and all help each other out.”