The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA), the sole national association representing all segments of the 1.8 million-employee lodging industry, issued the following statement commending passage of the Travel Promotion, Enhancement, and Modernization Act (H.R. 4450) by the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade on a unanimous 22-0 vote:
“Reauthorization of Brand USA is one of the top priorities for the U.S. lodging industry, and as such passage of H.R. 4450 is of great importance to hoteliers,” said Vanessa Sinders, AH&LA senior vice president of government affairs. “This program has provided our country with a very successful program attracting tourists from around the world, given us a competitive edge, and provided invaluable stimulus for the continued strength of our industry and the national economy. Today’s vote demonstrates an awareness among the members of the subcommittee of the vital need for continuing this program and providing further stimulus. We thank Congressmen Gus Bilirakis and Peter Welch for championing this crucial legislation for the travel industry, and Chairman Lee Terry for bringing about today’s successful markup. We hope the full Energy and Commerce Committee will move quickly to consider this bill so that it can then be brought to the House floor for a final vote.”
In 2013, Brand USA’s efforts resulted in:
- 1.1 million additional visitors to the U.S. who spent
- $3.4 billion on travel and purchases, resulting in
- $7.4 billion in total sales, which supported over
- 53,000 new U.S. jobs, and generated
- $1 billion in total sales tax revenue.
Brand USA is the public-private entity created to promote the U.S. and attract and welcome international tourists. In 2012, international visitors contributed $180.7 billion in travel spending, supporting 14.6 million jobs in all 50 states.