The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) and the Asian American Hotel Owners Association (AAHOA) join forces today as nearly 500 hoteliers from across the country come to Washington, D.C. for a joint hotel day on Capitol Hill. During the two-day Legislative Action Summit (LAS), hoteliers will raise awareness with Congressional leaders and hold some 250 meetings about the strength of the lodging industry and its meaningful impact on communities around the country.
This is the third year AHLA and AAHOA have partnered to underscore the lodging industry’s strength and unity, with this year’s theme focusing on how hotels are creating jobs, serving guests and supporting communities.
Supporting nearly 8 million American jobs, driving $600 billion to the U.S. economy each year, and contributing $170 billion in federal, state and local taxes, the impact of the hotel industry is undeniable. And as AHLA and AAHOA members meet with Members of Congress and their staffs, they will advocate for policies that encourage travel and tourism promotion, business growth, and entrepreneurial opportunities while urging more transparency on the rise of commercial activity fostered by short-term rental platforms and protecting consumers from online hotel booking scams.
“Located in every congressional district, hotels are interwoven into the fabric of each community across the country, creating jobs, serving guests, and supporting communities. As a guest-centric industry that focuses on opportunities and experiences, we are an industry of people, from our guests to our workers. The power of our industry lies in the opportunities hotels create for men and women seeking pathways toward upward mobility, fast-track promotions and lifelong, successful careers. Sharing those stories of promoting our employees, building partnerships with local leaders, and answering our guests’ needs is what makes us so unique as an industry and so important for members of Congress to know,” said AHLA president and CEO Katherine Lugar.
“Our annual Legislative Action Summit always promises dynamic opportunities for hoteliers to explain firsthand how Congress’ decisions impact their business and team members. From urging lawmakers to request the Federal Trade Commission to study the rise of commercial operators on short-term rental platforms to protecting consumers from online hotel booking scams to promoting travel and tourism and advocating for smart immigration and workforce policies, Congress has an important role to play in creating the environment to allow small businesses to grow and create more jobs.”
Chip Rogers, AAHOA president and CEO, commented, “As Congress confronts the many challenges facing our country, hoteliers are united in advocating for our employees, our businesses and our industry. AAHOA is thrilled to join forces with AHLA for our Legislative Action Summit for the third straight year. Advocating for hoteliers in our nation’s capital is essential with all the important issues being addressed by Congress on a daily basis. This week, we’ll be talking to lawmakers about tax reform, stopping predatory lawsuits and responsible home-sharing. Tackling these issues will help hotels support the 8 million jobs that rely on our industry, serve guests and support their communities.”
LAS participants will also hear from key leaders in Washington who will offer their insights on the political climate and congressional landscape, including remarks by Senator Dean Heller (R-NV), House of Representatives Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA), U.S. House of Representatives Democratic Caucus Chair Joe Crowley (D-NY), and political analysist Amy Walter.
The lodging industry continues to focus on growth and the nation’s economic resurgence while improving the employment landscape. Each day, nearly 5 million people check into a hotel, spending some $500 billion at local businesses during their trips. As a business of people serving people, taking care of our own is a top priority. The hotel industry creates competitive jobs with good benefits, and empowers its employees to advance quickly through the ranks to higher management positions. Indeed, more than 50 percent of general managers in the lodging industry began in entry-level jobs and three out of every five hotels are small businesses.