Business & Finance

Senate Confirms John Bryson for Commerce Secretary

October 24, 2011 - The U.S. Travel Association today applauded the U.S. Senate confirmation of John Bryson for commerce secretary. Bryson succeeds Gary Locke, U.S. Ambassador to China, who had been a strong advocate for improved traveler facilitation as commerce secretary.

“Thanks to his extensive experience in both the public and private sectors, John Bryson knows firsthand the important role that the $1.8 trillion travel industry plays in stimulating our economy and employing 14.1 million Americans,” said Roger Dow, president and CEO of the U.S. Travel Association. “We look forward to working with him on ways the travel industry can stimulate economic recovery, particularly through regaining America’s historic share of the overseas travel market, which would help meet the President’s stated goal of doubling U.S. exports.”

The U.S. Travel Association is the national, non-profit organization representing all components of the travel industry that generates $1.8 trillion in economic output and supports 14.1 million jobs. U.S. Travel's mission is to increase travel to and within the United States. Visit www.ustravel.org.

Coming Up In The December Online Hotel Business Review

Feature Focus
Hotel Law: Legal Issues Looming Large in 2015
In an industry where people are on-property 24/7/365, the possibilities are endless for legal issues to arise stemming from hotel guest concerns. And given the sheer enormity of the international hotel industry, issues pertaining to business, franchise, investment and real estate law are equally immense. Finally, given the huge numbers of diverse people who are employed in the hospitality industry, whether in hotel operations or food and beverage, legal issues pertaining to labor, union, immigration and employment law are also significant and substantial. The expertise of all kinds of specialists and practitioners is required to administer the legal issues within the hotel industry, and though the subject areas are vast and varied, there are numerous issues which will be in the forefront in 2015 and beyond. One issue that is gaining traction is how hotels are dealing with the use of marijuana by employees, given its ever-changing legal status. The use of marijuana is now legal in 21 states and the District of Columbia for certain medical conditions. Two other states, Colorado and Washington, have legalized recreational marijuana use for individuals who are 21 years old or older, and Alaska and Oregon currently have similar legislation pending. Most state laws legalizing marijuana do not address the employment issues implicated by these statutes. Therefore, it is incumbent on all hotel operators to be aware of the laws in their states and to adjust their employment policies accordingly regarding marijuana use by their employees. Other issues that are currently looming large pertain to guest identity theft by hotel employees and the legal liabilities which ensue; issues of property surveillance versus a guest’s right to privacy; and immigration reform could also be a major compliance issue. The December issue of Hotel Business Review will examine some of the more critical issues involving hotel law and how some managers are addressing them in their operations.