Northeast Spa and Pool Association
For more than 60 years, the Northeast Spa and Pool Association (NESPA) has been the leading trade association representing the pool and spa industry in the Northeast. The association provides industry education, networking, and business support to its membership.
NESPA consist of four chapters – CONSPA (covering Connecticut), Long Island, Metro NY-NJ, and Penn Jersey. Their 850 member companies include service professionals, builders/ installers, and retail stores.
Members of NESPA have the benefit of three organizations all at once: NESPA, the Pool and Hot Tub Alliance, and their local NESPA chapter.
Membership benefits are both direct and indirect.
NESPA and its individual chapters have government affairs professionals and advocates throughout the region who work with legislators on issues impacting the industry on a local, state, and national level. They monitor legislative action across the region and represent the pool and spa industry when these important actions are being debated.
For example, at the beginning of Covid, they worked hard to ensure that its members had essential workers status and could continue to operate.
The direct benefits are numerous. Members increase their credibility and gain an advantage when competing for new customers. Plus, they can connect with new consumers through NESPA’s Find A Professional Online locator.
NESPA also provides year-round education on the latest business and technical topics for everyone in a pool company.
They publish their own magazine, The Edge, which features the latest industry updates.
On NESPA’s webs i te and publications, members can access the latest information on codes, regulations, and other issues impacting the industry.
NESPA also provides Money Savings Programs such as: insurance offerings, HR and payroll support, and even discounted tickets to Disney. NESPA members can also attend the technical sessions at the Pool and Spa Show in Atlantic City for free.
NESPA runs The Pool and Spa Show ( www.ThePoolSpaShow.com), one of the swimming pool industry's largest events. Created for the industry by the industry, the show brings together more than 10,000 industry professionals each year and offers nearly 100 courses and showcases the industry’s most innovative products.
For their next show in 2023, they plan to put on the best pool and spa trade show that anyone has ever been to, so be sure to save the date for the 2023 Pool and Spa Show in Atlantic City, from January 24-26, 2023.
To learn more about NESPA, view their latest training schedule and get details on The Pool and Spa Show, visit www.nespapool.org or call 609-689-9111.
Pool and Hot Tub Alliance
The Pool and Hot Tub Alliance (PHTA) is the world’s oldest and largest association representing swimming pool, spa, and hot tub manufacturers, manufacturers’ agents, builders, designers, distributors, suppliers, installers, retailers, and service technicians.
PHTA delivers a vital service to its members: Advocacy at a federal, state, and local level. Every year, PHTA combs through thousands of potentially actionable regulatory items to determine any impact on the pool and spa industry. In many cases, the organization sets a clear course of action on the best way to move forward to ideally serve manufacturers, sellers, installers, and others connected to the industry.
They also help develop and implement the standards for the pool and spa industry. Since 1983, PHTA, operating as the Association of Pool and Spa Professionals, APSP, has been accredited by The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) as the Standards Development Organization for the nation’s pool and spa standards. It is the only organization recognized by ANSI to develop and promote national standards for pools, hot tubs, and spas. These national standards establish voluntary minimum guidelines that, when adopted by governments and agencies, have the force of law.
PHTA provides resources for members to build their businesses and advance their skills. They provide fact sheets to help advance the industry’s knowledge surrounding chemical products, processes, and devices that affect water quality maintenance of swimming pools, spas, and hot tubs. There are also publications targeted at consumers, such as safety awareness brochures to remind customers that their safety is our members’ top priority.
It is an association that has an enormous scope and reach within the pool and spa industry, affiliated with the Northeast Spa and Pool Association, the Texas Pool and Spa Coalition, and the California Pool and Spa Association, meaning that members of these organizations are automatically members of PHTA and can enjoy its benefits.
PHTA enhances the business success of its member professionals and ensures consumer safety through:
• Offering education and resources for members to expand their businesses and achieve personal success.
• Improving the business environment by advocating and promoting the benefits of the aquatics industry.
• Creating programs and practices to enable members to reach their pinnacle.
PHTA offers a wide array of certification courses to help distinguish pool professionals.
These include: CPO for Operators, CBP for Builders, CSP for Service Professionals, CST for Pool Technicians, CMS for Maintenance Specialists, CHTT for Hot Tub Technicians, CRP for Retail Professionals, and CPI for Inspectors.
PHTA certification represents excellence in achievement and demonstrates proficiency in the pool and hot tub professional.
Over the course of the last two years, PHTA has really ramped up their virtual learning, with numerous virtual schools, on-demand courses, and webinar series available to members.
In addition to the benefits already detailed, PHTA members receive a weekly e-newsletter, online listing in a Member Locator for consumers, major discounts on industry education, certification programs, as well as travel discounts and expert interpretation of legislative and regulatory activity whenever it’s needed.
PHTA offers a long list of benefits to all members, whether a distributor, manufacturer, builder, or anywhere in between.
Simply put, APSP exists to protect, professionalize, and provide for the pool and spa industry.
To learn more, visit www.phta.org.
Swimming Pool Association of Hawaii
The main goal of the Swimming Pool Association of Hawaii (SPAH) is to provide sick route coverage for its independent professional swimming pool technician member businesses and to enhance professionalism of all members and their companies.
The association was founded in 2000, and members say that SPAH’s sick route coverage is by far SPAH’s biggest benefit.
SPAH believes that professionalism is accomplished through monthly membership meetings, including workshops to further educate members in the areas of insurance, management, marketing, updates on new technology, materials, methods and supplies, and regulations pertaining to the industry.
The ultimate objective of SPAH is to have all companies in the Hawaii pool service industry as members to ensure professional growth within the industry and the association.
Member benefits include:
• Arrow Insurance coverage.
• Sick Route Coverage.
• Increasing Technical Expertise.
• Education Opportunities.
• Business Profitability.
• Pool Route Clearinghouse.
• Fellowship with Pool Professionals.
• Assistance from Other Members.
• Networking Opportunities and Referrals.
• Advertising and Marketing Privileges.
• Member Discounts. SPAH members take pride in their involvement in community outreach programs and participate in pool safety programs.
For more information, go to www. spahpools.com
Texas Pool and Spa Coalition
The Texas Pool and Spa Coalition, formerly Aquatic Professionals Education Council, APEC, is an advocacy association the works to protect the interests of the Texas pool and spa industry and the consumer through education while promoting superior standards of safety and efficiency. By uniting lawmakers and industry, they work to bring about effective and sustainable change.
The coalition works to:
• Represent Texas pool and spa professionals and consumers at the state and local level.
• Examine and track bills to keep members up to date on critical industry issues.
• Testify before local and state legislative, regulatory, bodies on behalf of members and the industry. • Maintain a constant presence at the Texas Legislature and state regulatory agency meetings.
The coalition retains lobbyists to execute these goals. Their advocacy efforts help achieve their goal to protect the welfare and bottom line of their members while maintaining an uncompromising commitment to industry safety and excellence.
In 2020, for example, TPSC worked hard to ensure the essential status of its members at the onset of the Covid pandemic and provided regular updates and guidance surrounding both state and local restrictions.
Through their affiliation with the Pool and Hot Tub Alliance, members of the Texas Pool and Spa Coalition enjoy a wealth of benefits. See accompanying article about PHTA.
To learn more about the Texas Pool and Spa Coalition or become a member and support the work that they do, go to www.txpsc.org or email email@example.com
United Pool Association
Service professionals looking to join an association with great insurance and little obligation, look no further than the United Pool Association.
With more than 1,800 members and growing, this is an association for the very independent pool service professional.
According to Steve Homer, association president, the whole premise of UPA is to serve the member.
“We look for ways to provide value for the membership – that’s how we grow. We don't take any money from our members, which is really important. The money we get, we raise on our own through a variety of ways, from support from our vendors to rebates from our insurance company,” Homer said.
Homer says that among UPA’s biggest perks is their insurance, which is through Allianz, a commercial insurance giant.
“The insurance program is great, with double the coverage of anyone else. We cover up to $2 million for just $67 a month. Most everyone else covers $1 million. It’s a 50-year-old policy with the fewest number of exclusions and limitations,” Homer said.
According to Homer, Allianz pays members back in the form of dividends if membership can keep their losses down. With these dividends, they can use the money to promote UPA and grow it.
In Homer’s opinion, the insurance is the association’s biggest selling point, but second to that is the independence that UPA’s members enjoy.
“The chapters can really do whatever they want. If the members don’t like the way it’s run, they can call a meeting, hold an election, and put in new leadership. Or they can spin off their own chapter. You are not required to stay where you are unhappy,” Homer said.
And for those that don’t like to attend meetings, or live in areas where there are no chapters, members can join the association’s newest chapter – UPA’s virtual chapter.
With more than 100 members, this is their largest chapter and can accommodate people in all 50 states.
Homer says that this is how they are able to compete with no-meetings associations, which tend to appeal to the younger generations of pool service professionals.
“It emulates the chapter meetings where you have a speaker come and talk about pool service issues. We’re accomplishing the same thing without making a guy drive across town and pay for a dinner he doesn’t want,” Homer said.
To accomplish this, UPA takes its members’ cell phone numbers or email addresses and sends them information about the organization, information about their insurance, and informational videos.
UPA’s members are getting a lot out of it. It is a big focus now for the association because the younger members are the future of the organization.
“We are vulnerable to these nomeetings chapters and we’ve lost members to them over the years. So, we had to find a way to combat them. The formula from 1992 doesn’t always work. But there’s also a lot of pools in places like Georgia and Oklahoma, and our organizations haven’t served them that well. But the virtual chapter can, and it’s been successful,” Homer said.
Recently, they also started a studyat- home contractor's license program for their members in California. And it’s a great value. For just $125, members can obtain their contractor’s license, and the program has a 97% pass rate.
To learn more about UPA member perks and details about their insurance coverage, go to www. unitedpoolassociation.org or call UPA directly at 714-274-5566.