March 2011

You are currently browsing the monthly archive for March 2011.

The Wisconsin hotel & Lodging Association invites you to participate in WH&LA Lobby Day 2011 on May 11, 2011. Learn about issues facing the lodging industry, hear from key state legislative leaders and meet with your legislators during the event. Activities will begin at 10:30 a.m. at the Hilton Monona Terrace and will include lunch, concluding by 3:30 p.m. after meetings with legislators at the Capitol.

Fees: lodging, lodging executive, student, CVB and chamber members: $29
Associate members: $39
Non-member lodging: $49

Register online now! Registrations with payment must be received by May 4, 2011.
Click here to download a copy of the registration form.

Overnight lodging: A block of guest rooms has been reserved at the Sheraton Madison for a rate of $79 + tax per night. Rooms can be booked online here or through the hotel at 608/251-1189. To book a room at the Hilton Monona Terrace, contact the hotel at 608/255-5100.

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The Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce (MMAC) will ask the Court of Appeals to reconsider the ruling released yesterday finding the Mandated Paid Sick Leave Ordinance approved by voters in the City of Milwaukee in 2008. For more about the ordinance implementation timeline and Senate Bill 23 and Assembly Bill 41, read the March 25 issue of Capitol Insider here. This page is password protected for lodging members only. For help logging in, e-mail Michelle in the WH&LA office or call 262/782-2851.

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This morning the Wisconsin Court of Appeals released their ruling upholding the controversial Mandatory Sick Leave Ordinance in the city of Milwaukee passed by referendum in November of 2008. The Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce (MMAC) filed a lawsuit right after the referendum passed challenging the legality of the mandate, which was won in Milwaukee County Circuit Court. An appeal filed by 9 to 5, the National Association for Working Women, was deferred to the state Supreme Court, which deadlocked in a 3-3 vote last October, sending the case back to the District IV Court of Appeals.

Why is this important not only to Milwaukee properties, but to others around the state? What does the Mandatory Sick Leave Ordinance require? To find out, read the March 24 issue of Capitol Insider here. This page is password protected for lodging members only. To get help logging in, e-mail Michelle in the WH&LA office or call 262/782-2851.

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Occupancy was up in Wisconsin in February 2011 compared to February 2010 and nearly all market areas saw an increase in occupancy, with the largest increase in Green Bay MSA. ADR was also up statewide compared to February 2010, with the largest increase in Madison.

To view Smith Travel Data for your region for February 2011, click here. (Password protected for lodging members only – e-mail Michelle in the WH&LA Office if you need help logging in.)

Data is provided by Smith Travel Research, an independent research firm founded in 1985. Smith Travel offers WH&LA members discounts on various STR reports and products. For more information, visit strglobal.com.

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Congratulations to the following WH&LA member properties & associate members for their recent awards:

The Hyatt Regency Milwaukee was named “Hotel of the Year” at the Noble Investment Leadership Conference in Raleigh, N.C. in March. The property also received three additional awards, including “Most Outstanding Food and Beverage Performance,” “Most Outstanding Financial Performance” and recognition in community support.

The DoubleTree Hotel of Madison won a corporate service award as one of the top five overall performing small hotels (under 224 rooms) within the brand.

A-1 Textiles has been honored in the following categories by DiversityBusiness.com: Top 500 Women Owned Business in the US, Top 100 Diversity Owned Business in California, Top 100 Women Owned Business in California and Top 100 Privately Held Business in California.

Congratulations also go to Ed Lump of the Wisconsin Restaurant Association on his being honored with a Tourism Legacy Award. Below Ed is pictured with his award and members of the Tourism Federation of Wisconsin.

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Focus on Energy is set to host a “Smart Strategies for Hotels” seminar at the Radisson La Crosse on April 26, and is offering a $20 discount to WH&LA members. The seminar will help lodging property owners and managers to understand where and how energy is used at hotels; identify energy-saving opportunities throughout your facility; and estimate potential energy savings and develop an effective energy-management plan.

The cost to register is just $79 with the WH&LA member discount ($99 for non-members). The class includes training materials, continental breakfast and lunch.

For more information and to register, click here. This workshop is held from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Continental breakfast and registration begins at 7:30 a.m. Lunch is also provided. Use WHLA when prompted to enter a discount code while registering. The seminar flier can be downloaded here.

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Every two years the state government has to consider a new 2-year budget proposal that goes into effect starting July 1 of odd-numbered years. More about the Governor’s budget proposal and it’s Department of Tourism funding, the film tax credit and other highlights can be found here by clicking the March 2 link. This page is password protected for WH&LA lodging members only. Contact Michelle in the WH&LA office if you need help logging in.

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The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA) is kicking off National Women’s Month with a membership drive for Women in Lodging (WIL) Connect, an industry-wide forum exclusively for female hospitality professionals. Anyone who joins in March will have the cost waived for a professional certification of their choice from the Educational Institute, which has never been offered before. To take advantage of the offer, the promo code will be emailed in early April.

And, the 1,000th member wins a prize package to be redeemed during the AH&LA Fall Conference, held in conjunction with the International Hotel, Motel + Restaurant Show, November 11-14:

- Free admission to the WIL keynote seminar and luncheon
- The unique opportunity to attend the WIL Executive Council meeting, comprised of the top female representative from more than a dozen chains
- Free admission to the Inaugural Gala at the Mandarin Oriental honoring WIL founder and Incoming Chair Nancy Johnson, executive vice president and chief development officer for Carlson Hotels – the Americas, Carlson Hotels

Click here to join!

Launched in 2004, WIL fuels the mission to promote women’s leadership into executive positions within the lodging industry.  Currently, there are more than 750 members nationwide taking advantage of the career-boosting resources WIL has to offer, including educational programming, mentor/mentee opportunities, exclusive networking with some of the industry’s top professionals, inclusion in an online directory, and access to additional state chapter benefits.

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Want to get great exposure across the Midwest as the featured property on the cover of the 2012 Wisconsin Lodging Directory? Then Enter the Lodging Directory Cover Contest! It’s free to enter and open to all sizes and types of WH&LA member properties in Wisconsin. Plus, we’ve changed the fee structure for this year’s contest and have added a social media promotion campaign where the traveling public gets to pick the winner.  Be sure to check out the program’s new structure, deadline and fees in the details below.

Details
WH&LA member properties may submit up to two photos featuring indoor or outdoor locations at their Wisconsin lodging property. No identifying signage is allowed. Web-resolution photos may be submitted for judging, but a high-resolution, print-quality version must be available should your photo be chosen as the winner. No exceptions.

Photos must be e-mailed to Michelle in the WH&LA office by Friday, April 1 at 5 p.m. Photos received after the deadline will not be considered. Hard-copy photos may be mailed to WH&LA Lodging Directory Cover Contest, 1025 S. Moorland Road, Suite 200 Brookfield, WI 53005.

All photo entries will be submitted to a third-party, outside design firm for first-round judging, where 12 finalists will be chosen. Each of the 12 finalists will be charged a $300 promotion fee.

The 12 finalists will each have a 2012 Lodging Directory cover designed and displayed at a special page at wisconsinlodging.org from Tuesday, April 12, through Monday, May 9. The traveling public will be able to vote for their favorite cover on the page. Each finalist will also be featured in a special edition of the WisconsINN Getaways e-mail newsletter n April, sent to nearly 6,000 subscribers. Additionally, finalists will be promoted via WH&LA’s Facebook and Twitter accounts throughout the voting period, and finalists are encouraged to promote the contest through their own social media channels. The winner of the cover contest will be announced on Tuesday, May 10.

The Fine Print
Finalists will be notified and billed the $300 promotional fee on or around April 12, 2011. If payment is not received by April 26, 2011, the property’s image will be disqualified. Only properties that have paid by the deadline will be featured in the promotional e-mail. The finalist that is chosen as winner must renew its WH&LA membership on or before to June 30, 2011 to be eligible to be featured on the cover. The winner must also continue or expand its Lodging Directory advertising commitment from 2011. If a property wins the cover contest but chooses not to renew membership, it will be disqualified and the second-place finalist will be named the winner. WH&LA reserves the right to refuse any photo submission for any reason.

Questions? Contact Michelle in the WH&LA office via e-mail at communication@wisconsinlodging.org or call 262/782-2851.

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Included in the “Affordable Care Act” passed in March 2010, some small employers will be able to take advantage of the small business health care tax credit when filing tax year 2010 income tax returns. According to the IRS, the credit is generally available to small employers that contribute at least half the cost of single coverage health insurance for their employees.

For tax years 2010 to 2013, the maximum credit is 35% of premiums paid by eligible small business employers and 25% of premiums paid by eligible employers that are tax-exempt organizations. Beginning in 2014, the maximum tax credit will go up to 50% of premiums paid by eligible small business employers and 35% of premiums paid by eligible tax-exempt organizations for two years.

To determine your company’s eligibility, download the form to calculate the credit and find answers to frequently asked questions about the tax credit, read the February 28 WH&LA Advisory, available here. This page is password protected for WH&LA lodging members only. If you need help accessing your user ID and password, contact Michelle in the WH&LA office.

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