DATE CHANGE FOR STARS OF THE INDUSTRY AWARDS AND ALLIED MEMBER TRADE SHOW The new date for both events is Tuesday March 4, 2014. The event location is the same – the historic and majestic Grand Historic Venue in Baltimore. For more details on submitting STARS nominations and on the event venue Click Here. MH&LA ADVOCACY EFFORTS RECOGNIZED MH&LA has received the 2013 Award of Excellence for Government Affairs from The International Society of Hotel Association Executives (ISHAE). The award is based on MH&LA's efforts to launch and manage a coalition working on securing approval of a post Labor Day start for Maryland public schools. LOCAL MINIMUM WAGE INCREASES APPROVED Based on an aggressive lobbying efforts by organized labor in advance of the 2014 elections, the County Councils in Prince George's and Montgomery Counties have approved bills to increase the local minimum wage to $11.50 per hour by 2017. A similar bill is expected to pass in Washington DC early next year. MONTGOMERY COUNTY INCREASE IS NOT A DONE DEAL The intent for state enforcement of Montgomery County's new minimum wage law cannot be done under current state law. A legal challenge on the geographic impact of the new law is also possible before it takes effect in October 2014. MH&LA will continue to monitor and be actively involved on this issue. 2 YEAR RAIN TAX DELAY HAS BI - PARTISAN SUPPORT State Senators Ed DeGrange (D - Anne Arundel) and Ed Reilly (R - Anne Arundel) are supporting legislation providing for a 2 year delay. A similar proposal passed the Senate on the final day of the General Assembly session earlier this year but was not concurred in by the House prior to adjournment. NEW WEEKEND MARC SERVICE IS UNDERWAY MARC now has 9 roundtrips on Saturdays and 6 roundtrips on Sundays between Washington DC and Baltimore. The first Saturday departure from Baltimore's Penn Station is 7:35 a.m. and the last departure from Union Station in D.C. is 10:35 p.m. Sunday trains leave Baltimore between 9:15 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.