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Southern Lodging Summit 2011. AH&LA’s Top Governmental Affairs Issues. Travel & Tourism Promotion Labor Issues Internet Travel Tax Fairness Act (ITTFA ) H2B New ADA Regulations. Travel & Tourism. Travel Promotion Act (signed into law 2010)

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AH&LA’s Top Governmental Affairs Issues

  • Travel & Tourism Promotion
  • Labor Issues
  • Internet Travel Tax Fairness Act (ITTFA)
  • H2B
  • New ADA Regulations

Travel & Tourism

Travel Promotion Act (signed into law 2010)

  • Public-private partnership: explain U.S. security policies and attract millions of international visitors through advertising campaign
  • Created “Corporation for Travel Promotion”

Corporation for Travel Promotion

    • Named Jim Evans CEO May 17 - 30 year hotel industry veteran
    • No-taxpayer money /ESTA funds to date = $85 million
    • TPA estimated to attract 1.6 million new international visitors
    • The campaign is expected to debut in early 2012

Travel & Tourism

Discover America Partnership

Coalition Leadership:

  • AH&LA, USTA, Chamber of Commerce & National Retail Federation
  • Over 50 members: Ex. Hotels, Restaurants, Unions,

U.S . Conference of Mayors, Consumer Electronics Assoc.


  • Make Visa offices responsive to demand
  • Reduce visa interview wait time
  • Expand the Visa Waiver Program

Labor Issues

Department of Labor (DOL) Audits

  • Audit Letters Being Issued
  • Congressional Activity
    • Oversight - Make DOL responsive through hearings/funding mechanisms
    • Appropriations -Eliminate funding for X,Y,Z activity

H-2B Regulations

  • H-2B Regulations
    • H-2B Program critical to secure temporary seasonal workers
    • Dept. of Labor proposed new rules that jeopardizes program:
      • Increases H-2B pay to essentially union wages
      • All other employees also raised to same wage level
      • Transport, advertising, etc. requirements effectively makes program unusable
    • AH&LA co-chairs H-2B coalition
    • Working on legislation and litigation to block rule implementation

Labor Issues

Fighting Back-Door Card Check

  • Ambush Elections
    • NLRB to shorten time for Union elections to 7-10 days
  • Gag Order on Employers
    • DOL rulemaking to change public discourse requirements
  • Specialty Health Care
    • Micro-Unions (Gerrymandering the workforce)

Online Hotel Booking Tax

Internet Travel Tax Fairness Act (ITTFA)


Online Hotel Booking Tax

What’s at Issue

  • Proposed legislation would exempt OTCs from paying anytaxes on retail rate
  • Creates preferential tax treatment

Current Situation

  • Stalled on the Federal level – appearing at State level
  • Florida – AH&LA killed bill this session
  • AH&LA strategy for PSAs & state action
national landscape
National Landscape

Booking Travel Online May be Costing States Half a Billion in Revenue

February 5, 2011

Cities, States in hotel tax war with Orbitz, Expedia, Others

October 22, 2010

Cities Sue Online Firms Over Unpaid Hotel Taxes

April 12, 2011

Online Travel Industry Wants Reid To Stick Around.

September 25, 2010

florida a key battleground
Florida – A Key Battleground

Stop unfair tax breaks for companies

April 20, 2011

Bill to help online-travel companies squeaks through another stop

April 6, 2011

Web Companies Would Get Break

April 5, 2011

Bill gives online travel companies unfair advantage

April 9, 2011

Florida and local governments are losing out when it comes to online travel tax breaks

April 5, 2011

Make websites pay full share: Florida counties are getting stiffed $23 million in bed-tax revenue

March 18, 2011

Report Says Florida among states with tax loophole costing millions

April 13, 2011

Our Opinion: Online travel hijinks

April 1, 2011

Online carpetbaggers fleece Florida

April 6, 2011

around the states
Around The States



Georgia Supreme Court considers whether online travel firm is shortchanging city on hotel tax

March 15, 2011

Our views: Collect what\'s due

March 20, 2011

District enters the fight to recover tax revenue from online hotel vendors

March 27, 2011



DC latest to sue online travel companies over tax

March 22, 2011

Hawaii to pursue $170M in unpaid hotel room taxes

April 24,2011

D.C. to sue online firms for unpaid taxes

March 22, 2011

State Pursues $170 Million in Unpaid Hotel Room Taxes from Online Travel Companies

March 23, 2011

D.C. to sue Internet travel companies

March 21, 2011


ADA Regulations – Top 11 Changes


Water Closet Clearances

Power Mobility Devices

Vanity Equity

Service Animals


Guestroom Door Signage

Pools & Spas

Reach Range Requirements

Exercise Equipment

Service Counters



  • HotelPAC: AH&LA’s Political Action Committee
    • Voice of the lodging industry on Capitol Hill

Contact Information

Marlene Colucci

Executive Vice President for Public Policy

American Hotel & Lodging Association

(202) 289-3121 / [email protected]