MHLA Monthly News – January 2017


Baltimore County’s tourism budget to get a boost from hotel tax  

Baltimore County Council members have approved legislation requiring that 8 percent of the hotel tax collected by the county be sent to the tourism office. To read the full Baltimore Sun article, click here.

MHLA supported this bill and worked closely with Hal Ashman, Baltimore County Tourism and Promotion Advisory Council Chair, to coordinate oral testimony. General Managers Renee Taylor (Hampton Inn White Marsh) and Kate Lewis (Fairfield Inn & Suites White Marsh) attended the hearing and testified. Their efforts are to be commended as this is a big win for the industry in Baltimore County!

Anne Arundel County Council considers nuisance bill

MHLA is closely monitoring proposed nuisance legislation in Anne Arundel County and has not yet taken a position on the bill.  A hearing is scheduled on January 17, 2017. Input is being sought from Anne Arundel County lodging members and their feedback will determine the Association’s position.  If you would like more information, contact MHLA President & CEO, Amy Rohrer.

“The measure would allow the county’s police chief to issue a public nuisance notice to businesses that have had 10 “nuisance” arrests on their property (within a 12 month period) — a definition that includes prostitution, lewdness, human trafficking, drug possession and dealing, illegal gambling, storing stolen property and unregistered firearms, crimes of violence and gang activity, among other charges.”

To read the full Capital Gazette article, click here.

Minimum Wage Hikes on Tap for 25 States and Local Governments 

In 2016, a total of seven states – Arizona, California, Colorado, Maine, New York, Oregon and Washington – approved raising the state’s minimum wage to between $12 and $15 an hour. Over the next two years, campaigns to raise the minimum wage will launch in eight states – New Jersey, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Ohio and Pennsylvania – and four more localities – Minneapolis; Baltimore; Montgomery County, Maryland; and Santa Clara, California. To read the full 24/7 Wall St article, click here.

MHLA continues to oppose efforts to increase minimum wage beyond the statewide wage of $10.10 that is being phased in through July 2018.

Uber, Lyft avoid fingerprint requirement in Maryland 

Uber and Lyft won waivers of Maryland’s fingerprint-based background check requirements approved by the Maryland Public Service Commission despite three days of public hearings over the objections of the Office of the People’s Counsel, commission staff and a cab company. To read the full Washington’s Top News article, click here

MHLA Wins Governmental Affairs ‘Award of Excellence’ 

At the International Society of Hotel Association Executives (ISHAE) annual Winter Conference in December, MHLA was awarded the Governmental Affairs Award of Excellence for efforts related to the Senate Bill 190 Veto Override that occurred on January 21, 2016.

This legislation clarified certain defined terms used in the sales and use tax law and reaffirmed the State’s authority to impose the sales and use tax on all consideration paid by guests, including fees charged by OTCs and hosting platforms (such as Airbnb) when booking rooms. Passage of Senate Bill 190 is estimated to result in an additional $5M in sales tax revenue for Maryland each year.


MHLA 28th Annual Stars of the Industry
The 28th Annual Stars of the Industry Awards is next month, don’t miss MHLA’s biggest event of the year! The ceremony is the perfect opportunity to recognize the outstanding accomplishments of Maryland’s lodging industry. Every nominee will be honored. Don’t miss it!

February 7, 2017, 11am – 1:30pm, at The Hotel at Arundel Preserve 
Click here to nominate your stars. 
Nomination deadline is January 13, 2017. Click here to learn about sponsorship opportunities and to register for the event. 
Registration deadline is January 24, 2017. 

Thank you to our Presenting Sponsor:

November 2016 STR Report is Available on the MHLA Website

Occupancy, ADR and RevPAR in Maryland are provided monthly to MHLA by Smith Travel Research. To view the report, go to and select “Industry Statistics and Research.” We anticipate the December STR report will be available in a couple weeks. Please check our website for updates. This report is provided to MHLA members as a member service and requires log in to access. For assistance email

Thank you Allied Members & Partners who joined / renewed in December 

(Log in to view complete contact information for all Lodging and Allied Members.)  

Triple Crown Construction (NEW SILVER PARTNER): Triple Crown Construction is an industry leading General Contractor that specializes in Hospitality Renovation projects. We are known for delivering great quality workmanship with efficient, honest, proactive and genuine service to hotels nationwide. Contact Chris Rapp, (240) 815-5300,

Hagerstown/Washington County Convention and Visitors BureauThe Hagerstown/Washington County Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) is a non-profit private organization. Our mission is to develop and market Washington County as a viable and desirable travel destination to meeting planners, leisure travelers and business customers Contact Dan Spedden, (301) 791-3246,

HotelPro: Hotel staffing company.  Contact Kathy Konopik, (410) 365-4376,

Maryland Renaissance Festival: North America’s largest Renaissance Festival, featuring hundreds of artists in a juried show, entertainment, great and unusual food and fun for all ages in a 16th century village. Contact Jules Smith: (410) 266-7304,

Maryland Tourism Coalition (NEW ALLIED MEMBER):  MTC promotes tourism in Maryland through advocacy, events and networking.  Contact Wini Roche, (443) 563-1315,

PAC Industries, Inc.: Commercial laundry machine distributors with a supporting service and parts department. Contact Scott Benjamin, (717) 657-0407,

Premium Parking Service, LLC: Our goal atPremium Parking is not to be the biggest parking operator, but the best.  Learn how we perform at a level that moves us and our partners forward. Contact Kevin Williams, (410) 804-1353,

S. Freedman & Sons Inc.: We provide guest room supplies: amenities, paper, cleaning chemicals, laundry, and food service products.  Contact Tim Antonini, (301) 322-5000,


Conde Nast names two Maryland hotels ‘favorites’ in the world 

Congratulations to MHLA Member Four Seasons Baltimore for being named by the Conde Nast Traveler’s editors as one of their favorite hotels in the world on the 2017 Gold List. In the U.S., the Four Seasons Baltimore was one of only two Four Seasons Hotel to have been recognized, and one of seven Four Seasons Hotels worldwide.

Additional congratulations to The Ivy in Baltimore’s Midtown neighborhood who also made the list. The Gold List spans six continents and 46 countries. To view the full list, click here.

MGM National Harbor calls opening ‘successful’ 

The $1.4 billion MGM National Harbor, Maryland’s sixth and most expensive casino, opened Thursday, December 8. AAA said the resort could mean an additional 9 million visitors to the area and a 6.2 percent increase in traffic on the Capital Beltway interchange near the 23-acre property. To read the full Baltimore Sun article, click here.

With opening of MGM National Harbor, state casinos shatter revenue record

With the opening of the $1.4 billion MGM National Harbor casino and resort to capacity crowds, Maryland casinos generated a record $133.5 million in revenue during December, the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency report. To read the full Baltimore Sun article, click here.

January, 2017

Thank you to our annual partners!




Comments are closed.