|Government Affairs Monthly Report|
Government Affairs Report - September 2016
Minimum Requirements Regulation
After reviewing the latest version of the proposed Minimum Requirements Regulations for Lodging Establishments we are pleased to inform that it incorporates many of the recommendations we discussed with various Puerto Rico Tourism Company officials, particularly those related to short term rentals and other alternative lodging establishments. We understand that the new Regulation will help PRTC’s room tax collection efforts and guarantee the experience of those visitors opting to stay on these establishments.
Gubernatorial Candidates Forum
On September we held our Gubernatorial Candidates Forum to learn what are the candidates’ plans towards our tourism sector. It was an interesting activity and it will serve our plans to move forward our agenda of initiatives for growing tourism in Puerto Rico.
Congressional Task Force on Economic Growth for Puerto Rico
On October 14, 2016, PRHTA submitted to the Task Force an abstract of a study we commissioned supporting and expanding the recommendations we presented to the task Force back in September. In a nutshell we stressed the importance of establishing an independent marketing entity in Puerto Rico, we validated the effectiveness of the incentives granted to the tourism sector under the Tourism Development Act and warned members of the Task Force about the negative impact that the implementation of a Video Lottery System will have on the tourism industry.
Visits to DC
Next week, a delegation of the PRHTA will travel to Washington DC to meet with officials from the Department of Treasury and with key staff of the legislators who are members of the Task Force. We will discuss with them the importance of supporting the tourism sector as a potential economic driver for restoring growth in Puerto Rico. A second visit to DC is already schedule for November.
San Sebastian Street Festival
The meetings to organize the logistics of this important festivity commenced and the PRHTA has been invited to participate. This is the third consecutive year we have been part of this planning process something that have been of great benefit since it allows us to have official information to share with our members. In addition to this, officials from the Municipality of San Juan who are leading these efforts will be participating at our next Security Committee meeting.
Puerto Rico Police Department Reform Compliance Advisor
We are scheduling a meeting with the Police Reform Compliance Advisor to discuss with him concerns regarding the implementation of the Inn keepers Act. We have received information that the Advisor has instructed policemen not to intervene with hotels whenever any guest or visitor is required to leave the property premises. This is against the law and we want to make sure he knows the details of the Act and support its implementation.
Contact The Government
Let Your voice be heard!
Let the government officials that represent you, know what you think. Below are the links you need to communicate with the Governor, your senator, your representative in the House, your mayor and the heads of a variety of agencies whose areas of purview directly affect your business:
Commonwealth of Puerto Rico:
On the site http://www.gobierno.pr you will find a great source of information and contacts related to all the government branches, including municipalities, as well as data such as employment statistics, the economy, the tourism industry and others.
At http://www.fortaleza.gobierno.pr you can make contact directly with the Fortaleza and everyone who works at the Executive Mansion.
If you wish to contact your senator, you may do so via: http://www.senadopr.us
House of Representatives:
You may contact your representative in the House at: http://www.camaraderepresentantes.org
Legislation Feedback Link:
If you would like to learn more about bills under consideration, obtain copies of them and send your recommendations to the authors of the bills, you may do so by going to: http://www.opinapr.com.
Your opinion is important and your suggestions are welcome throughout the processes of determining new laws and regulations. At PRHTA we encourage you to take an active role in helping those we elect, by giving them the feedback they need to make informed decisions on our behalf.