July 30, 2020
July 30, 2020
Dear Members,

Today, AzLTA is joining organizations across the world to raise awareness about human trafficking. Every year, thousands of men, women and children fall into the hands of traffickers, in their own countries and abroad. Almost every country in the world is affected by trafficking, whether as a country of origin, transit or destination for victims.

On this World Day Against the Trafficking of Persons, I would like to remind you of the critical role our industry plays in protecting victims of this crime.  AzLTA has partnered with The SAFE (Safeguarding All From Exploitation) Action Project to provide free human trafficking training to AzLTA members and their staff.

The SAFE Action Project is a tourism training program designed to elevate awareness and action within the industry to combat human trafficking. Through specialized training and community collaborations, the project provides the travel, hospitality, and tourism industry with the knowledge and skills to recognize and properly report potential human trafficking situations. Please visit our website for more information. 

Together, we can end human trafficking. 


Kim Grace Sabow
President & CEO

Join AzLTA for the Tourism Talk Virtual Webinars that will cover the most pressing issues facing the travel, tourism and hospitality industry beginning with our first Series, "Providing Solutions In A Time of Crisis - Enhanced Hospitality Health and Safety Protocols" on Wednesday, August 5 at 10:00 AM. Our panel of experts will discuss the proactive steps the industry has taken to further elevate and implement health and cleanliness protocols and the wave of recent efforts to impose onerous and costly mandates on businesses in cities throughout the country including Phoenix. Sign up today and submit your questions! #TourismTalk
Bipartisan HOPE Act introduced: This week, U.S. Congressmen Van Taylor (R-TX-03), Al Lawson (D-FL-05), and Andy Barr (R-KY-06), introduced legislation in the House of Representatives to provide economic support to the commercial real estate (CRE) market, especially for businesses with Commercial Mortgage-Backed Securities (CMBS) debt, and the millions of Americans they employ. H.R. 7809, the Helping Open Properties Endeavor (HOPE) Act works to protect millions of jobs by preventing Commercial Real Estate (CRE) foreclosures, specifically to borrowers of commercial mortgages by providing financial assistance through the HOPE Preferred Equity lending facility. Guaranteed by the Department of the Treasury, financial institutions will originate preferred equity instruments to borrowers. AzLTA and AHLA strongly support the HOPE Act and we encourage you to reach out to Members of Congress and ask them to co-sponsor the HOPE Act (H.R. 7809).

HEALS Act Provisions: This week, Senate Republicans introduced a proposal for the next round of coronavirus relief – the “Health, Economic Assistance, Liability Protection, and Schools (HEALS) Act”. As a reminder, the House introduced the HEROES Act proposal in May, which passed along party lines. Discussions are expected to now begin in earnest as Congress faces the July 31 deadline for enhanced pandemic unemployment insurance benefits. Part of the Republican proposal would reduce these benefits from $600 per week to $200 per week on top of state administered aid until the end of September at which time the maximum benefit will be 70% of the recipient current wages -- but this will be a starting point for the negotiations.

We are pleased to see many of the industry’s priorities included in the HEALS Act, including: 
  1. Targeted Tax Provisions: The expansion of the Employee Retention Credit (ERC) and Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC), and a per employee credit for enhanced cleaning and acquisition of PPE in the Finance proposal. 
  2. Business Meal & Entertainment Deduction: Supporting Americans Restaurant Workers Act: Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) introduced a separate bill which would fully reinstate the business meal and entertainment deduction. 
  3. PPP Recapitalization: Eligible small businesses with 300 employees or less and that show significant year over year revenue decline (currently 50%) will be eligible for a second PPP Loan. The NAICS Code 72 exemption language for Hospitality and Food Service, originally included in the CARES Act, is included in the Small Business proposal.  Additionally, there is increased funding for the SBA 7(a) program, which is targeted towards “recovery sector businesses.” 
  4. Liability Protections: The “SAFE TO WORK Act” introduced by Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) provides liability protections for employers, schools and health care providers. This Act also provides limited liability protection for businesses until October 1, 2024.
  5. DMOS eligible for PPP: Expands eligibility for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to all destination marketing organizations (DMO), including any 501(c) nonprofit, quasi-governmental organization or political subdivision of state or local government with 300 employees or less. 
AzLTA will continue to work with AHLA and U.S. Travel to advocate for these bills and additional industry priorities.
We need your help! The November election is quickly approaching. AZLTA is actively raising funds to support our tourism advocates at the legislature. 
By contributing to the AZLTA PAC, you are helping to elect legislators who support our industry. Every day, lawmakers make decisions on raising or lowering your taxes, enacting or repealing burdensome employer mandates, and promulgating unreasonable regulations. The AZLTA PAC is committed to electing lawmakers who will best represent our objectives – lowering taxes, repealing burdensome employer mandates, and eliminating unreasonable regulations.
AHLA has announced COVID-19 Precautions for Hotels, a hotel-specific online training course designed specifically for cleaning and safety during the pandemic. This valuable training tool was developed in partnership with the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI).
The movement to end human trafficking and help survivors is growing every day - and it's thanks to partners like SAFE ActionProject who are dedicated to raising awareness & providing training to our hotels in the fight against human trafficking.
Are you AZSAFE + CLEAN Certified? AzLTA is pleased to offer the AZSAFE+Clean certification that aims to provide hotels and resorts a one-stop-shop for industry standards and guidelines for a safe work environment, and confirm to both their team members and guests that they are taking the necessary steps to remain safe and clean. 
Arizona Lodging & Tourism Association has partnered with Teladoc Health to give your employees and their families safe access to care with unlimited virtual visits for both mental health and medical conditions for just $7 per month per employee- no insurance required. 
Reopen with healthy employees and help avoid unnecessary closures. An FDA-authorized at-home COVID-19 test is now available. Our new partner LetsGetChecked offers AzLTA members a 20% discount with code HOSPITALITY20.
AzLTA is committed to providing our members with up-to-date resources, webinars, information and recommendations from our state and national partners. Daily updates will be shared on our website so please reference it often and share it with your network.
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