LEGISLATIVE NEWS & UPDATES
Legislation permitting hotel guests to swim at their own risk considered in two counties
MHLA testified in support of Expedited Bill 16-17 at a public hearing on June 13. The pending legislation would enable Montgomery County hotels to make pools available for guests to swim at their own risk when certain criteria is met. Baltimore County and Montgomery County are the only two exceptions in the state that require lifeguards at all hotel pools anytime they are open. The lead sponsor is Councilmember Sydney Katz.
The bill needs a favorable report from the Health & Human Services (HSS) Committee to then go to the full Council where 6 of 9 votes are needed for passage. The bill is on the agenda for the HHS Committee work group taking place on July 9 at 9:30 AM.
Similar legislation, sponsored by Councilwoman Cathy Bevins in Baltimore County, was withdrawn last month.
If you support the Montgomery County bill, contact Amy Rohrer for more information on ways you can help at Amy@MDLodging.org
H-2B Visa Program
The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA) has secured inclusion of cap relief in the FY17 omnibus appropriations bill. Earlier this year, the congressionally mandated caps for H-2B visas for the first half of this year was reached well ahead of schedule. The language included in the FY17 spending package allows the H-2B cap to be raised when it is determined that there is an economic need.
Airbnb Consumer Perceptions Poll
Overwhelmingly, consumers are clear that they want illegal hotels to be regulated, according to a recent consumer poll fielded by our national association.
- 91% of Americans agree that individuals and companies using short-term rental websites to run a business should be required to follow local and community zoning, health and safety rules.
- 87% agree they should be subject to the same safety and fire regulations as hotels.
- 85% agree these commercial operators should be required to register with the city and pay taxes.
- 71% agree they should be required to provide access for the disabled
New Report Marks The Beginning Of The End for “Fight for $15”
A new University of Washington study details the harm that Seattle’s higher minimum wage has caused to the employees it’s meant to help. The study found “…total payroll fell for such jobs, implying that the minimum wage ordinance lowered low-wage employee’s earnings by an average for $125 per month in 2016.” That’s a loss of “3.5 million hours worked per calendar quarter.” READ MORE
As a reminder, on July 1, Maryland’s minimum wage increased to $9.25, and will increase again to $10.10 on July 1, 2018.
MHLA NEWS & RESOURCES
May 2017 STR Report
Occupancy, ADR and RevPAR in Maryland are provided monthly to MHLA by Smith Travel Research. To view the report, go to https://mdlodging.org/members/ and select “Industry Statistics and Research.” We anticipate the June STR report will also be posted on our website soon. This report is provided to MHLA members as a member service and requires log in to access. For assistance email Christine@MDLodging.org.
2017 MHLA Annual Golf Tournament
Wednesday, October 4, 2017
Whiskey Creek Golf Club
Register today for the MHLA Annual Golf Tournament. We have over 100 golfers registered to date and we are expecting the event to sell out for the second consecutive year!
Join your friends and industry colleagues out on the course for a great day of contests, prizes and networking at Whiskey Creek Golf Club, our host for the last three year. Once again, EcoLab will be joining us as our Title Sponsor and Live! Casino & Hotel / Live! Lofts as our Presenting Sponsor.
A portion of the proceeds raised from the MHLA Golf Tournament are donated to the Maryland Tourism Education Foundation. This year we awarded three MHLA Member hotel employees each a $1,500 scholarship to help with education costs as they are advancing their careers in our industry. You can be a part of increasing funds for the future by supporting this event.
Register online or download the registration form with event details.
2017 MHLA New Hotel Members
Thank you to our newest hotel members who have joined MHLA throughout 2017. We appreciate your support as we strive to advance the interests of the lodging industry in Maryland.
- MGM National Harbor – Patrick Fisher
- Hampton Inn White Marsh – Renee Taylor
- Hilton Garden Inn White Marsh – Maddie Zimmer
- Fairfield Inn & Suites White Marsh – Karen Salinas
- Embassy Suites Baltimore at BWI – Gary Gustafson
- Hilton Garden Inn Rockville-Gaithersburg – Ryan Urgo
- Homewood Suites by Hilton Rockville-Gaithersburg – Ryan Urgo
- Revival at Mount Vernon Place-A Joie de Vivre Hotel – Beth Brainard
- Residence Inn White Marsh – Krystal Lehnhoff
- La Quinta Inn & Suites Columbia/Jessup – Bridgette Sloan
- Live! Casino & Hotel and Live! Lofts – Bob Tedesco
- Courtyard by Marriott Columbia – Jeff Ault
- Residence Inn Columbia – Ken Hough
- Holiday Inn Express Kent Island – Eric Hoffman
- Holiday Inn Columbia East Jessup – Lisa Augustine
- Country Inn & Suites Baltimore North – Deepak Patel
Search Smarter Campaign
Online booking scams and fraudulent sites are on the rise. READ MORE
As part of their Search Smarter campaign, the American Hotel & Lodging Association has been reaching out to consumer groups to enlist their support along with other key influencers, including CBS’s Peter Greenberg. See his teaser story that aired on CBS This Morning here.
The MHLA Office Has Moved!
We’ve moved! Our new address is 20 Ridgely Ave., Suite 309, Annapolis MD 21401. Please update your records and email mhla@MDLodging.org if you need an updated W-9.
LOCAL INDUSTRY NEWS
Ocean City’s Newest Brand Hotel Celebrated at Grand Opening
Source: The Dispatch
In an effort to promote a more business-friendly state, Gov. Larry Hogan joined with franchise owners, government officials and business leaders to celebrate the opening of Ocean City’s new Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott. Located between 25th and 26th streets along Philadelphia Avenue, the Fairfield features more than 100 rooms and nearby amenities for Ocean City visitors. It is the first of six new flag hotels to be built in Ocean City. READ MORE
McHenry Row office building, hotel, get design panel approval
Source: Baltimore Sun
The McHenry Row developer received approval from the city’s Urban Design and Architecture Review Panel for an office building and Courtyard Marriott hotel planned for the 20-acre South Baltimore site. The plan includes a six floor office building, 15,000 square feet of retail or office space, and an eighth floor, 126-room hotel. READ MORE