WASHINGTON—AHLA President and CEO Katherine Lugar, and Chip Rogers, president and CEO of AAHOA, issued statements following President Donald Trump’s address yesterday evening to a Joint Session of Congress.
Lugar’s statement reads:
“As an industry that supports 8 million jobs, contributes nearly $600 billion to the U.S. economy each year and generates $170 billion in local, state and federal taxes, we look forward to continuing to be an economic driver and job creator with pathways to long-term career opportunities to strengthen communities across the country. Tonight, President Donald Trump made a strong commitment to advance economic growth and focus on the American workforce and we strongly support these efforts. With travel and tourism responsible for one in nine jobs, we applaud the President’s commitment to a ‘national rebuilding’ of the nation’s aging infrastructure by announcing a $1 trillion investment which will provide a much-needed boost to the local workforce while encouraging more travel to our cities and towns.
“While the President touched on many issues that impact hospitality and our industry, from immigration, healthcare and tax reform to investments in infrastructure and homeland security, we urge the Administration to focus on public policy that empowers business growth, entrepreneurial ambitions, and workforce flexibility.
“When it comes to changes to our nation’s immigration laws, as an industry, we have long been committed to comprehensive reform which addresses the need to fill growing demand for a diverse workforce while also addressing important national security interests. While we recognize the need for robust national security, any action must have a balanced approach to both promote hospitality and travel to the United States for those who wish to come—both as employees and as guests—while also ensuring the safety of our citizens here at home. We will continue to engage with the Administration, Congress and our partners in the broader U.S. travel industry to develop policies that both welcome and protect our guests, employees and our country.
“As President Trump continues to build out his Administration and execute on his policy priorities, we look forward to working with his Administration and Congress on initiatives that bolster our economy, enhance travel and tourism, increase innovation, and create the certainty necessary for our industry to continue investing in our workforce and spurring new hotel development, all of which will further strengthen and support the communities we serve every day.”
Rogers said the following in his statement: “The president’s speech was a vivid reminder that Americans can unite to solve big challenges. President Trump’s call for reducing regulations, reforming the tax code and investing in America’s infrastructure is welcomed by our more than 16,000 small business owner members. As pioneers in the hotel industry, our members are eager for action by the administration and Congress on items that will promote travel and tourism and empower them to continue to create jobs in their communities. We’ll continue to educate lawmakers and regulators about the impact on our industry of issues like the joint employer standard, overtime rules, health care reform and tax reform.”