America’s Hoteliers Met with Lawmakers, Aiming to Boost Tourism, Tax Cuts

WASHINGTON—The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) and the Asian American Hotel Owners Association (AAHOA) gathered for their two-day 2018 Legislative Action Summit (LAS) in early September as nearly 400 hoteliers from across the country met with lawmakers on Capitol Hill.

During the summit, hoteliers discussed the strength of the lodging industry, issues affecting it, and its significant impact on communities around the country. This is the fourth year AHLA and AAHOA partnered to highlight the lodging industry’s strength and unity.

Supporting nearly eight million American jobs, putting $600 billion into the U.S. economy each year, and contributing $170 billion in federal, state and local taxes, the hotel industry’s impact is undeniable. As AHLA and AAHOA members met with elected officials and congressional staff, they advocated to make permanent the tax cuts in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, policies that encourage international travel and tourism to the United States, and new protections for consumers from online hotel booking scams.

AAHOA President and CEO Chip Rogers said, “As Congress confronts the many challenges facing our country, hoteliers are united in advocating for our employees, our businesses and our industry. AAHOA is pleased to once again join with AHLA for our Legislative Action Summit. Advocating for hoteliers in our nation’s capital is essential with all the important issues being addressed by Congress.”

LAS participants heard from key leaders in Washington who offered their insights on the political climate and congressional landscape, including U.S. Department of Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta; Sen. Mike Rounds (R-SD); Reps. Henry Cuellar (D-TX), Rodney Davis (R-IL), and Scott Peters (D-CA); Phil Lovas, Deputy Assistant Secretary, National Travel and Tourism Office with the U.S. Department of Commerce; and David Wasserman, U.S. Editor and Senior Election Analyst, Cook Political Report.

The lodging industry continues to focus on growth and the nation’s economic resurgence while improving the employment landscape. The lodging industry has seen 102 straight months of economic growth, and each day, nearly five million people check into a hotel, spending nearly $500 billion at local businesses during their trips. The hotel industry creates competitive, good-paying jobs with clear pathways for professional development and advancement, the organization said.

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