The softwood lumber industry voted for creation of a check-off program whose assessments would generate a war chest to promote the use of softwood lumber, the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced last month.

The program calls for all softwood companies that domestically ship or import more than 15 million board feet of softwood lumber annually to pay an initial assessment rate of 35 cents per thousand board feet. This is expected to generate between $12.4 million and almost $19 million per year for, among other things, marketing campaigns directed at builders, architects, and others who influence choices of construction materials.