The Safe Stay Guidelines have been updated to reflect the new CDC guidance released last week, which recommended fully vaccinated individuals wear face coverings in public indoor settings in ‘substantial or high’ transmission areas of the country. At this time, circumstances for a change in mask requirements are local, not national, and may be temporary depending upon location. Therefore, we encourage each hotel to monitor their specific location and act accordingly. MHLA will remain vigilant and will continue to rely on CDC recommendations, in accordance with state and local laws, to help navigate any new public health concerns.
As an industry, our top priority is employee and guest safety. As we navigate this ongoing public health challenge, we urge everyone to get vaccinated to help ensure the safety of our communities. Please visit the AHLA Employee Vaccination Information website for the latest resources from the CDC, and other health organizations. Click the following link to Find a vaccine site in Maryland.
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REPORTS: NEARLY 500,000 HOTEL JOBS WON’T RETURN BY YEAR’S END, ROOM REVENUE WILL BE DOWN $44 BILLION FROM 2019
Findings Come as Hoteliers Meet with Congress to Call for Aid
Download Reports Here and Here
Washington (July 20, 2021) – Midway through 2021, a new report and state-by-state job loss breakdown released by the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) find that while leisure travel is starting to return, the hotel industry’s road to recovery from the pandemic is long and uneven, with urban markets disproportionately impacted.
Industry projections have improved since January with the uptick in leisure travel, but the industry remains well below pre-pandemic levels. Key findings include:
COVID-19 is the single worst economic event in the history of the American hotel industry. While the recent uptick in leisure travel for summer is encouraging, business and group travel, the industry’s largest source of revenue, will take significantly longer to recover. Business travel is down and not expected to return to 2019 levels until at least 2023 or 2024. Major events, conventions and business meetings have also already been canceled or postponed until at least 2022.
Despite being among the hardest hit by the pandemic, hotels are the only segment of the hospitality and leisure industry yet to receive direct COVID-related aid.
The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) is the sole national association representing all segments of the U.S. lodging industry. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., AHLA focuses on strategic advocacy, communications support and workforce development programs to move the industry forward. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, hospitality was the first industry impacted, and it will be among the last to recover. That is why AHLA is committed to promoting safe travel while also creating a standardized safety experience nationwide through the Safe Stay initiative. With an enhanced set of health and safety protocols designed to provide a safe and clean environment for all hotel guests and employees, hotels across America are ready to welcome back travelers when they are ready to travel. Learn more at www.ahla.com.
We are pleased to share a newly released Career Pathways video from the AHLA Foundation. This short, new video highlights the over 200 career pathways available in the hotel industry. MHLA is working with key contacts in Maryland to promote this video and increase awareness of all that we offer to job seekers. Members who serve on a local school or workforce advisory board, are also encouraged to share it!
Endless Possibilities Exist in the Hotel Industry - YouTube
Additionally, a series of regionally based job fairs are being offered by the Maryland Department of Labor through early October. The “Back to Business Hiring Events Flyer” with more information and contact information for regional business solutions consultants was sent to hotel members via email on July 7, 2021.
Lastly, the Maryland Department of Labor will host a Virtual Information Session for the Restaurant / Hospitality industry on July 20th 2021 at 10:00 A.M. as an opportunity for employers to learn more about how participating in the Maryland DOL’s Registered Apprenticeship initiative may benefit you. The session is an hour and will cover how a business can participate and experience financial gain. Click on the link to register: Apprenticeship for your business Tickets, Multiple Dates | Eventbrite
Chuck Chandler, outgoing Chair of MHLA, presented the new Board Slate and called for a member vote. By unanimous approval, he welcomed the new incoming 2021-2022 Chair, Michael Henningsen, as well as the Executive Committee and Board of Directors at the Annual Meeting on May 12, 2021.
Samples of "Hospitality Acts of Kindness" were shared at Annual Meeting this week in a YouTube video: https://lnkd.in/eira3JF
There are far more stories than we had time to share. Hotels of all types and sizes have helped employees, guests, and communities throughout this pandemic, often without recognition. Thank you to the hotel industry for all that you do. Hospitality never stops! #hospitalitystrong #hotels
Governor Hogan lifts capacity restrictions for conventions and banquets; Work search requirements to be reinstated
Governor Hogan's statewide lifting of restrictions
On May 12, 2021, Governor Hogan announced lifting of restrictions on indoor and outdoor venues - including "convention and banquet facilities" - and indoor and outdoor dining. Click here for the executive order, which goes into effect on May 15. The indoor mask requirement remains in place, but will be lifted when 70% of Maryland adults receive at lease one dose of the vaccine. According to Maryland's COVID-19 Vaccination dashboard, that number is currently above 65%.
Local Jurisdiction Updates
Convention and banquet facilities in Baltimore City will remain limited to 50% max capacity. Read the press release here.
According to this article, Montgomery County will not follow the state, but will stick with their current phased-in reopening which is tied to county vaccination rates.
Prince George's County Executive Angela Alsobrooks put out this updated Executive Order, which states "Other business establishments and activities will be allowed with some capacity restrictions still in place (social distancing required), including: Banquet halls, receptions and meeting rooms in hotels, conference centers and similar establishments – maintaining 50% of maximum capacity" effective Monday, May 17 at 5:01 p.m.
Anne Arundel County has announced they will follow along with the state's reopening plan. (Read more here.)
We are monitoring the decision of other local jurisdictions.
Work Search Requirements to be Reinstated
Additionally, Governor Hogan has directed the Maryland Department of Labor to work in collaboration with the federal administration to begin the process of reinstating work search requirements to connect more job seekers with good opportunities. The Department of Commerce has shared that the requirements are scheduled to be reinstated by late June.
Montgomery County Council passes new Board of Health regulation easing restrictions for hotel meetings & events
Note from MHLA: On April 8, 2021, MHLA sent this letter and activated advocacy to address the 25 person gathering restriction imposed on hotel meetings and events in Montgomery County. Amy Rohrer, MHLA President & CEO, testified before the Council on April 27, along with one of MHLA's Board Members, in support of an amended Board of Health regulation that would allow hotels in the county to hold socially distanced meetings at a greater capacity. The 5th amended Board of Health regulation was passed during the same hearing, and represents a significant step toward the start of recovery for Montgomery County hotels. We are pleased to report this progress! Members may contact Amy Rohrer for more information.
Montgomery County Press Release:
Council passes new Board of Health regulation to allow a further phased reopening tied to COVID-19 vaccinations
Rockville, Md., April 27, 2021—Today, the Council voted unanimously to approve an amended Board of Health regulation to allow a further phased reopening tied to COVID-19 vaccinations. The amended Board of Health regulation takes effect on April 27 at 5 p.m.
The Fifth Amended Board of Health Regulation provides guidance for expanded reopenings based on the percentage of the County population receiving COVID-19 vaccinations. Currently, 51.2 percent of the County population has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccination. The expanded reopenings would be automatically triggered when the Montgomery County Health Officer reports that the vaccination benchmarks have been reached to the Board of Health.
Face coverings and social distancing are still required. The phases would be:
1. At 50 percent of the population receiving at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine:
Montgomery County follows face covering guidelines from the CDC and the Maryland Department of Health, whichever is stricter. The new regulation provides an exception for sports activities that allows the removal of face coverings during vigorous outdoor exercise for high heat and humidity.
If the Montgomery County health officer finds that after reviewing community transmission metrics that continued reopening phases would be contrary to the public health, the health officer must report those concerns to the Board of Health and the continuation to the next phase must be suspended pending a hearing before the Board of Health.
The amended Board of Health regulation can be viewed here.
View all Council press releases: https://www2.montgomerycountymd.gov/mcgportalapps/press_List.aspx?id=01
MHLA is pleased to share the Nominating Committee’s recommendations for the 2021-22 MHLA Board of Directors. A member vote on the slate below (* indicates new member to the Board) will take place at the Annual Meeting on May 12, 2021.
Click here to register for the meeting.
Nominations for Executive Committee:
Chair: Michael Henningsen, Plamondon Hospitality Partners
Vice Chair: Bob Haislip, Royal Sonesta Harbor Court Baltimore
Treasurer: Jim Starke, Best Western Plus BWI Airport / Arundel Mills
Secretary: Linda Westgate, The Hotel at the University of Maryland /Cambria Hotel & Suites at College Park
Immediate Past Chair: Chuck Chandler
Nominations for Board of Directors:
Faraz Ahmed*, College Park Marriott Hotel & Conference Center
Peg Bednarsky, Historic Inns of Annapolis (Emeritus)
Beth Brainard, Canopy by Hilton Baltimore Harbor Point
Joel Bunde, Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort, Spa and Marina
Katarina Burns, Gaithersburg Marriott Washingtonian Center
Skip Cerf*, Sheraton Baltimore North
Jason Curtis, Hotel Indigo Baltimore Downtown/Chesapeake Hospitality
Mark Elman, Clarion Resort Fontainebleau Hotel
Rodney Gooden*, Westin Annapolis Hotel
Donte Johnson*, Hotel Revival Baltimore
Peter Mangione, Turf Valley Resort
Dan McKeon*, Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center
Patrick Miner*, Courtyard Baltimore Downtown Inner Harbor
Tracey Pool*, Hyatt Regency Baltimore
Barbara Reed, Homewood Suites by Hilton Washington, DC North/Gaithersburg
Ben Seidel, Real Hospitality Group
Junaid Siddiqi*, Presidential Hotel Advisors
Nominations for Allied Directors:
Kathy Konopik, HotelPro
Darryl McCallum, Esq., Shawe & Rosenthal, LLP
Chris Rapp, Triple Crown Construction
Maryland Destination Marketing Organization Representative:
Amanda Hof*, Visit Howard County
Donnisha Grant*, Anne Arundel Community College – Hotel, Culinary Arts and Tourism Institute
Pending a vote of approval by MHLA Members at the Annual Meeting on May 12, 2021, the two-year term for new Board Members will commence that day.
MHLA would like to thank all members for their support of the Association.
Hotel Employees in Phase 2C for vaccine prioritization; Pre-Registration for mass vaccination sites open to all
We have received clarification that hotel employees fall into Phase 2C for vaccine prioritization.
This website, https://covidlink.maryland.gov/content/vaccine/, has been updated with a link to CISA guidance that includes hotels in a comprehensive list of Essential workers falling into Phase 2C. For more information on the essential workers group as defined by CISA, click here. (See page 22)
PRE-REGISTRATION FOR MASS VACCINATION SITES OPEN TO ALL MARYLANDERS 16 AND OLDER
“All Marylanders age 16 and older can now pre-register for an appointment at a mass vaccination site by visiting covidvax.maryland.gov or calling 1-855-MD-GOVAX (1-855-634-6829). During pre-registration, Marylanders can choose their top two preferred sites.
While pre-registration is now open to all Marylanders, individuals who are currently eligible under Phase 1 and Phase 2 but have not yet been vaccinated will continue to be prioritized for appointments.”
Click here to view the full press release from Governor Hogan's office.
THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION MAY BE SHARED WITH HOTEL EMPLOYEES
When asked to “Please select all the groups that best apply to you,” hotel employees should check the following box (along with all other groups that apply).
Essential workers in critical industries, including construction workers, food services, utilities, transportation, financial services, IT and other infrastructure.
Governor Hogan has announced changes and lifting of certain restrictions impacting hotels and convention centers, effective Friday, March 12, 2021 at 5:00 p.m. More information has been updated on MHLA's COVID-19 Resources page.