2018 Advocacy Priorities
The Minnesota Lodging Association follows hundreds of bills during each legislative session, as well as related issues at the county and city levels. Listed below are our top advocacy priorities for 2018.
- Preempt local wages & mandates in Minnesota, maintaining the principle of “one state – one rule.” The bill is referred to as Uniform Labor Regulations and is a high priority for the broad business community this session. View issue brief.
- Pass legislation to establish a statewide basic level of regulation for short-term rental platforms, such as VRBO and AirBnb, which allows cities or counties to do more if they chose to pass a local ordinance. The goal is to ensure short-term online rental properties compete fairly with businesses that rent lodging by requiring licenses and permits and collection of sales and lodging taxes. Regulation will also assure the safety of the public. View issue brief.
- Protect the appropriate use of local option lodging taxes. Current law requires that 95% of most local lodging tax revenue must be spent on marketing. We expect proposals from some local units of government to allow the use of these funds for other purposes, which we strongly oppose. View issue brief.
- Protect good paying tipped jobs in full service hotels and in restaurants. We support legislation recognizing tips as income. View issue brief.
- Support legislation prohibiting the misrepresentation of pets as service animals under the Americans with Disabilities Act. View issue brief.
- Phase out the statewide business property tax. This tax has been levied by the state since 2001 in addition to the local taxes collected by cities, counties and school districts. View issue brief.
- Maintain and strengthen the law that requires most schools to start classes after Labor Day and add a provision regarding when school sports can begin practices and activities. View issue brief.
- Support a change in the Unemployment Insurance (UI) law that classifies wages paid to international student workers as “non-covered employment.” Students on the J-1 program are not eligible to collect unemployment and are exempt from the UI tax in other states. View issue brief.
- Support reasonable immigration reform including a limited driving credential for undocumented workers. We are particularly supportive of the Delayed Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and urge Congress to extend the program by law. Issue brief coming soon.
- Oppose legislation requiring employers to provide paid sick leave and/or vacation to all employees. View issue brief.
- Support state investments in tourism facilities that have local support, an identified source of funding and that don’t use the current local option lodging tax for non-marketing purposes. View issue brief.
- Oppose a requirement for mandatory labor peace agreements when public subsidies are provided to hotel or hospitality projects. View issue brief.