Member News – March 19, 2013

POST LABOR DAY SCHOOL OPENING STUDY LEGISLATION UPDATE Senate Bill 963 which establishes a Task Force to study a post Labor Day start date for Maryland public schools received a very positive reception at a recent State Senate hearing. A State House Committee public hearing on the companion bill (House Bill 1502) will be held today. MARK YOU CALENDAR FOR THE GOLF OUTING AND FISHING TOURNAMENT MH&LA's Annual Golf Outing and Fishing Tournament will be held on Monday May 6 at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort, Spa and Marina in Cambridge. Registration and sponsorship opportunities information will follow soon. TAX REVENUE ESTIMATES LOWERED BUT BUDGET APPROVAL IS STILL ON A FAST RACK The State Board of Revenue Estimates has lowered the state's revenue estimates by $115.3 million over the next two years. Despite the forecast, approval of a state budget with relatively minor reductions is on schedule. Last week the House approved and sent a budget to the Senate. PKF FORECASTS STEADY GROWTH FOR THE HOTEL INDUSTRY The most recent forecasts from PKF Hospitality Research project increases in hotels' 2013 earnings. Revenue per available room is projected to rise 6.1%, while net operating income is forecast to grow by 10.2%. AMERICANS' SENTIMENT TOWARD TRAVEL IS HIGHER THAN PRE-RECESSION LEVELS A recent survey indicates that consumers' travel sentiment has improved, surpassing a benchmark rating established in March 2007. 57% of the U.S. adults surveyed expect to go on a vacation within the next six months and 20% of respondents plan to take at least one business trip over the next six months. POOL LIFT SIGNAGE AVAILABLE AH&LA has created suggested safety guidelines for properties to post on pool lift safety signage. Click here to view the guidelines. For more information contact AH&LA Senior Vice President of Governmental Affairs Kevin Maher at (202) 289-3147. MH&LA MEETS ON EFFORTS TO STOP HUMAN TRAFFICKING MH&LA President/CEO David Reel met recently with a representative of the Araminta Freedom Initiative, an organization whose mission is to eliminate human trafficking of minors. Next steps are to further explore possible mutually agreeable collaborative efforts to address this issue. FOOD ALLERGIES MAY BE CONSIDERED A DISABILITY The U.S Department of Justice is requiring Lesley University to accommodate students with severe food allergies. This is not a new regulation or new guidance but it may indicate a new direction by the federal government on how hotels and restaurants must accommodate food allergy needs under the ADA. AH&LA NAMES NEW PRESIDENT AND CEO Katherine Lugar, currently the Executive Vice President of the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) has been selected to serve as the President and CEO of the American Hotel & Lodging Association effective April 17, 2013. REMINDER - THE MH&LA OFFICE HAS MOVED The MH&LA office is now at 839 Bestgate Road, Suite 400, Annapolis, MD 21401. The phone number has not changed but the fax number has. The new fax number is 410-266-7463.

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