U.S. District Judge Richard Jones in Seattle denied the International Franchise Association's bid to block part of a law that will raise Seattle's minimum hourly wage to $15, rejecting claims that it favors independent businesses over franchises. Jones said IFA failed to back up its claims that the wage law is discriminatory because it requires franchises like McDonald's and Burger King to phase in the new wage more quickly. The decision did not dismiss the association's lawsuit, but means the law will take effect as planned.
American Gaming Association wants to see the Department of Homeland Security prioritize the Las Vegas area for funding to defend against terrorism. In a letter to the Nevada congressional delegation dated March 6, AGA CEO Geoff Freeman said the Department of Homeland Security’s Urban Areas Security Initiative “does not adequately take into consideration Las Vegas’ unique profile as a major international travel destination.” He said it’s essential that Homeland Security ranks Las Vegas in its top tier.
A group of U.S. beef value chain participants recently announced the launch of the U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef. The roundtable will identify sustainability indicators, establish verification methodologies and generate field project data to test and confirm sustainability concepts for use throughout the U.S. Currently, the USRSB has 43 founding members. including association/nonprofit members Alabama Cattlemen’s Association; Beef Cattle Institute, Kansas State University; Colorado Cattlemen’s Association; Florida Cattlemen’s Association; Kansas Livestock Association; Minnesota Cattlemen’s Association; Missouri Cattlemen’s Association; National Cattlemen’s Beef Association; National Livestock Producers Association; Nebraska Cattlemen’s Association; Oregon Cattlemen’s Association; Sustainable Rangelands Roundtable; Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association; National Grazing Lands Coalition; Texas Cattle Feeders Association; Nature Conservancy; and World Wildlife Fund.
PMMI, The Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies, and producer of the PACK EXPO portfolio of trade shows, has entered into an agreement to co-produce a new U.S.-based tradeshow with Koelnmesse GmbH, the producer of nutrition-related trade fairs in Europe and Asia. The event will focus on processing and packaging technologies serving the food and beverage marketplace.
American Pet Products Association's Global Pet Expo 2015 experienced record setting attendance and new product launches during the three-day show. Presented by APPA and the Pet Industry Distributors Association, the show featured 311,300 net sq. ft. of exhibit space, making it the biggest Global Pet Expo in its 11 years. There was an increase in growth across the board as Global Pet Expo featured 6,061 buyers in attendance, an 8.3 percent increase over last year, more than 3,000 new pet product launches, 1,051 exhibitors and 3,113 booths sold – the highest post-show numbers to date. Total show attendance came to nearly 15,500 people.
Global Business Travel Association joined several traveler groups in support of Airlines for America’s opposition to the proposed near doubling of the Passenger Facility Charge – or airport tax. GBTA executive director Michael W. McCormick said: “Some groups want to increase the PFC to $8 per boarding. That, along with other taxes and fees, means that a business traveler could see an increase of $58.20 for a roundtrip ticket. Travelers don't need to be the piggy bank. Beyond the investments made by airlines, airports have more than $11 billion in unrestricted cash and investments while bringing in more revenue every year - a record-high $24.5 billion in 2013. In addition, two-thirds of GBTA members surveyed have said they oppose a PFC increase."
American Anthropological Association today called on professional and college sports organizations to denounce and abandon the use of American Indian nicknames, logos and mascots, unless appropriate consultation has taken place with individual tribes and other indigenous stakeholders. The AAA resolution also calls for sports organizations to respect the right of individual tribes to decide how to protect and celebrate their cultural heritage. The resolution calls on the organizations to acknowledge that the use of such mascots causes continuing harm to American Indians. The continued use of American Indian mascots in sport also has been denounced by American Indian advocacy organizations, as well as academic, educational and civil rights organizations, including but not limited to Association of American Indian Affairs, National Congress of American Indians, and National Indian Education Association, American Psychological Association, North American Society for the Sociology of Sport, Modern Language Association, Linguistic Society of America, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and Southern Poverty Law Center.
International Sign Association launched its inaugural class of ISA Elite, which recognizes the next generation of sign and visual communications industry leaders. The ISA Elite is comprised of 36 young professionals who work in the industry. ISA Elite is designed to combat one of the most pressing issues facing the sign and visual communications industry as older workers retire. Sign industry leaders continually say they are concerned about replacing workers in both skilled and management positions. ISA Elite is the latest program in ISA’s comprehensive workforce development initiative. The ISA Elite sponsors winners to attend ISA International Sign Expo in Las Vegas including special networking events, education and, of course, its sold-out tradeshow.
Children’s Hospital Association launched a new website at www.childrenhospitals.org designed to serve as a gateway to resources and information on children’s health and children’s hospitals. Areas covered on the site include Issues and Advocacy, Quality and Performance, Research and Data, and an enhanced newsroom featuring profiles of spokespeople, press releases and the quarterly publication, Children’s Hospital Today.
From left, the Watergate Hotel managing director Johnny So; Euro Capital Properties’ principal Jacques Cohen; D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser; D.C. Councilmember Jack Evans, Ward 2; design & development director Rakel Cohen and Mad Men costume designer Janie Bryant gather to plant seedlings at the ceremonial topping-off of the hotel's new grand ballroom on March 19 in Washington. The Watergate Hotel will reopen this summer after a $125 million renovation, including 340 guestrooms, whiskey bar, restaurants, grand ballroom, rooftop lounge, and a fitness center and spa.
Association and Society Management International, an association management company, was selected for the 2015 Best of Falls Church (Va.) Award in the Business Organizations category. Because ASMI has received this award for two consecutive years, it has earned a place in the Falls Church Awards Hall of Fame.
Association of Fundraising Professionals joined a new strategic partnership with Relationship Science, a technology solutions company that enables organizations to strategically leverage the collective connections of employees, executives, and board members in order to shorten fundraising cycles and identify high-impact donors.
Associations International was named one of Kentucky’s Best Places to Work by the Kentucky Society for Human Resource Management and the Kentucky Chamber in the small-sized employer category.
American Airlines and US Airways, which merged last year, are combining the carriers’ frequent-flier plans on March 28. Members of US Airways’ Dividend Miles loyalty program will be folded into American’s AAdvantage.
The ratings of all airlines in the 2015 Temkin Experience Ratings are JetBlue Airlines (75%), Southwest Airlines (72%), Delta Airlines (69%), Alaska Airlines (69%), Virgin America (63%), American Airlines (57%), United Airlines (56%), US Airways (55%), AirTran Airways (52%), and Spirit Airlines (47%). JetBlue Airlines (+15 points), Delta Airlines (+6 points), and Alaska Airlines (+4 points) improved the most between 2014 and 2015. American Airlines (-5 points), United Airlines (-5 points), and AirTran Airways (-4 points) were the only companies in this industry whose ratings declined between 2014 and 2015.
Starwood Capital Group launched a new brand, 1 Hotels. The first property debuts in South Beach, Fla., with others slated for Central Park in late spring and Brooklyn Bridge Park at the end of 2015. 1 Hotels features no paper or plastic in the guest rooms to nature as art and lobby farmstands. Each hotel in the portfolio is designed by eco-friendly architects and craftsmen, and features high-design with low-impact, reclaimed and natural materials wherever possible. The South Beach property features 426 rooms, and 100,000 sq. ft. of indoor and outdoor space.
Syscom Services’ web technology division has become a separate company called Brightfind, which will center on specialized digital design and web development. Frank Klassen, the leader of that division, is now CEO and a principal owner of Brightfind, which specializes in designing, implementing, and continually improving the web presence of organizations requiring complex and highly interactive online content. Another offering is Brightfind’s innovative Experience Insight program, which keeps pace with the preferences and interests of online visitors and customers.
Experient, a meeting and event solutions provider, recognized two of its supplier partners with the 2014 Supplier of the Year award: Melissa Daniels, strategic accounts director, Hyatt Hotels; and Troy Hammond, strategic accounts director – Americas, also of Hyatt Hotels.
Kathleen Bertrand is retiring as community and governmental affairs SVP at the Atlanta CVB.
Cyril Kovarsky to global sales SVP, Accor hotels, effective April 1. He was a SVP at French multinational telecommunications corporation Orange.
Nominated to the board of United Fresh Produce Association: Bret Erickson, CEO, Texas International Produce Association. In addition to TIPA, Erickson is also manager for the South Texas Onion Committee and the Texas Produce Policy Council. He serves on the USDA Agricultural Trade Advisory Committee, the board for the Canadian Fruit & Vegetable DRC, the Border Trade Alliance, and United’s Government Relations Council.