President and CEO Katherine Lugar of the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) issued the following statement following President Donald Trump’s address this evening to a Joint Session of Congress.
"As an industry that supports 8 million jobs, contributes nearly $600 billion to the U.S. economy each year, and generates $170 billion in local, state and federal taxes, we look forward to continuing to be an economic driver and job creator with pathways to long-term career opportunities to strengthen communities across the country.
While the President touched on many issues that impact hospitality and our industry, from immigration, healthcare, and tax reform, to investments in infrastructure and homeland security, we urge the Administration to focus on public policy that empowers business growth, entrepreneurial ambitions, and workforce flexibility.
When it comes to changes to our nation’s immigration laws, as an industry, we have long been committed to comprehensive reform which addresses the need to fill growing demand for a diverse workforce while also addressing important national security interests. While we recognize the need for robust national security, any action must have a balanced approach to both promote hospitality and travel to the United States for those who wish to come – both as employees and as guests – while also ensuring the safety of our citizens here at home. We will continue to engage with the Administration, Congress and our partners in the broader U.S. travel industry to develop policies that both welcome and protect our guests, employees and our country.
As President Trump continues to build out his Administration and execute on his policy priorities, we look forward to working with his Administration and Congress on initiatives that bolster our economy, enhance travel and tourism, increase innovation, and create the certainty necessary for our industry to continue investing in our workforce and spurring new hotel development, all of which will further strengthen and support the communities we serve every day.”