11/19/20
The Slice gives you all the news you can use. Each issue will include any COVID-19 updates, reopening information, legislative news, and other relevant items for our readers. Please let us know if you'd like to see anything in particular or have other feedback - just email marketing@vrlta.org.
What's the Latest?
VA1 Cancelled: Refund Info, Virtual Programming Offered
 
First, we want to thank you for your patience as we worked through what to do about this year’s VA1 Tourism Summit. After considering all options, we have made the difficult decision to cancel this year's event.

This year's exciting line up was crafted by the VA1 programming committee, and we are pleased to announce that we will be offering you some of the content virtually over the next few months. While we are disappointed the in-person VA1 2020 could not happen, we look forward to sharing some sessions with you.
 
Refunds

All attendees will be refunded in full by the end of November. Refunds will also be given for the pre-conference content workshop. If you have any questions about your refund, please contact Nancy Crowe at ncrowe@convention-connections.com.

Upcoming Virtual Programming - Open to ALL, not just those who were registered for VA1!

We are working to transition some of the planned VA1 sessions to a virtual format and hope you'll join us for these events. More virtual programming will be announced in 2021!

Virtual Content Workshop, sponsored by VistaGraphics
December 15, 9 – 11 a.m. EST
Cost: $49

Please note: if you registered to attend the workshop in person at VA1, your payment will be refunded; you must register again using the link below!

Join us for the first ever virtual Content Workshop on December 15 at 9 a.m. The workshop will provide attendees with exclusive insights into content and digital marketing from the team at VTC as well as experts from VistaGraphics and Workshop Digital.

As we see our world becoming more digitized, from our work to how we connect with friends and family, it is becoming increasingly important for marketers to be nimble, knowledgeable and confident with new cutting-edge digital tools. For the first time ever, this content will be delivered virtually, helping to provide attendees with the tools needed to be successful in our “new normal.”
 
Attendees will hear from VTC’s experts about social media, photography, video, design, advertising, branding, content creation, creative writing, search, website development and email marketing – all critical components to successful destination marketing. The goal of this session is to equip attendees with the tools needed to successfully market their destination or business, while also providing practical advice and tips that they can apply right away.
Drive 2.0 Webinar, presented by VTC Partnership Marketing

December 2, 2 – 3 p.m.
FREE!

DRIVE 2.0 is a strategic blueprint for promotion and tourism development that will help make Virginia’s communities more competitive. Join us to learn about the DRIVE 2.0 Strategic Plan and how you can be involved in its implementation and DMO grant funds. Watch for an email with more information. Questions? Please contact Caitlin Johnson at ccjohnson@virginia.org.
Storytelling and the Black Travel Experience Webinar, presented by Share More Stories

December 7, 3 – 5 p.m.
FREE!

We invite you to join us for a two-hour informational session focused on more deeply understanding the experiences of Black travelers in Virginia - an often under-
prioritized but powerful consumer segment. More details coming soon. For more information, please contact Jane Lammay (jlammay@virginia.org).
NRA Offering Post-Election Webinar: Understanding the 2020 Elections and What Lies Ahead for Restaurants

The National Restaurant Association will be hosting three webinars next Monday for restaurant members. Get the latest analysis from the NRA’s Government Affairs team on the recent elections and what the coming lame duck and 2021-2022 Congressional Sessions mean for restaurants. They’ll also share a preview of what is to come as President-elect Biden assumes office, and the NRA’s strategy going forward. The three webinars will be the same; choose whichever fits your schedule! 
 
Monday, November 23, 2020 - Three time slots available...10 – 10:45 AM ET, 2:15 – 3 PM ET, 3:15 – 4 PM ET
Restaurants: Complete the Latest NRA Coronavirus Restaurant Impact Survey by 11/30

Please complete this new Coronavirus restaurant impact survey. VRLTA is partnering with the NRA to gather critical data that will be very valuable to our ongoing advocacy and communications efforts during this crisis. We very much appreciate you taking the time to complete it. The survey will stay open until COB Monday, Nov. 30.   
Upcoming Events
Mark Your Calendar!

  • November 23, 10 a.m. OR 2:15 p.m. OR 3 p.m. - NRA Post-Election Webinar (see above for details and registration links)

  • December 8, 4 p.m. - Richmond Chapter 4th Quarter Virtual Holiday Mixer. Register here.

  • December 10, 3 p.m. - Arlington-Alexandria Chapter 4th Quarter Virtual Holiday Trivia Mixer. Register here.

  • December 14, 4 p.m. - Shenandoah Chapter 4th Quarter Virtual Holiday Mixer. Register here.

  • December 16, 4 p.m. - Charlottesville Chapter 4th Quarter Virtual Holiday Mixer. Register here.

  • January 6, 10 a.m. - Webinar Wednesday: Pre-Session Review of VRLTA Positions & Advocacy Insight. Register here.
Government Affairs
Governor's Update
 
On Friday, Governor Ralph Northam announced additional restrictions related to COVID-19 to mitigate the spread of the virus. While the Governor’s Executive action does not make any changes to the occupancy limits at restaurants, campgrounds, hotels, or large amusement parks, it did reduce the private and public gatherings from 250 to 25 individuals. Unfortunately, this will have a significant impact on hospitality and tourism related businesses. Hotels and restaurants will now be unable to host weddings and other events larger than 25 individuals.

The new measures instituted an onsite alcohol curfew with onsite sale, consumption, and possession of alcohol prohibited after 10 p.m. in any food service establishment. Restaurants are also now required to close between midnight and 5am. VRLTA was able to convince the administration to allow curbside, delivery, and takeout of food between midnight and 5 a.m.

VRLTA has also learned that educational- and employment-related gatherings are not exempted from the 25 person limit, unless the training is mandatory.

You can view a copy of the Governor’s amended EO 67 here.
2021 General Assembly Update
 
  • VRLTA has learned that the 2021 Virginia General Assembly Regular Session will be conducted virtually. The House of Delegates will be meeting on a total virtual basis, and, as of now, the Senate plans to meet in person. In both cases, in-person meetings with legislative offices will not be permitted, but virtual ones will be allowed.
  • While the odd number year sessions tend to be 45 days, the House and Senate Republican Caucuses have announced that they will use a procedural measure to limit the 2021 regular session to 30 days as outlined in the Virginia Constitution. In order for the 30 days to be extended to 45 days, a two-thirds majority vote is required both chambers. Democrats currently lack the requisite numbers to overcome the Republican opposition to extending the session.
  • Both of these announcements will have a significant impact on the 2021 regular session. VRLTA continues to monitor this situation, and will provide relevant updates once we learn additional details.
  • VRLTA is currently working to line up legislators to champion bills on many of our legislative priorities, including ABC-related issues such as Alcohol To-Go and Local Entertainment Districts, as well as other issues including closing the Online Travel Company loophole and establishment of Tourism Improvement Zones. We hope to begin hosting some member-legislator meetings prior to the regular session shortly and will alert you to those gatherings in your area once scheduled. 
2021 VRLTA Legislative Priorities
 
VRLTA recently finalized our 2021 legislative priorities. We encourage you to check out these priorities and the focus of our public policy efforts in next year’s session. You can view the 2021 VRLTA legislative priorities here.
National Restaurant Association Update
 
As noted, Virginia recently implemented additional restrictions related to COVID-19. The staff at the National Restaurant Association has shared with us that many states are looking to implement additional requirements or prohibitions. Several states, including Illinois, New Mexico, Oregon, Washington, Michigan, and California have shut down indoor dining.

In response, the National Restaurant Association sent letters to the National Governors Association and US Conference of Mayors expressing their concerns with these restrictions and urging the leadership of the organizations to consider other approaches, and speaking to the public health and safety measures implemented by restaurants.


More News You Can Use
VRLTA Job Board Matches Employers and Workers

VRLTA's new job board is focused specifically on our industry!

Employers can list hospitality and tourism jobs, and VRLTA members get unlimited listings for free through the end of the year (choose 30, 60 or 90 days - up to $100 value for each listing!). A 30-day listing for nonmembers is just $50. Job seekers can search jobs statewide and post their resume in the resume bank.

Let VRLTA help your business during this challenging time with a job board focused just on hospitality and tourism jobs. Take advantage of your membership and get free listings through the end of the year. There's no cost or risk to members - why not give it a try?

Want to list a position? It's SO easy...click here to learn more.
Don't Delay on Your Rebuild VA Grant Request
 
The deadline is December 31, 2020; however, if you're interested in applying, do so soon, as the dollars are expected to run out quickly; we have heard that half of the funding has already been allocated, so don't delay!
 
You can find more on the program, including the application here.