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?
Want to Be In The Know? Attend VRLTA's Upcoming Full Membership Meeting and Component Meetings

VRLTA's fall membership and component meetings will be VIRTUAL this year. At the meetings, we'll be electing officers, getting updates on Government Affairs and Education, gathering feedback from members, and more. By attending, you are taking part in shaping the direction of the association for the coming year. There is no cost to attend, but you must register to get the Zoom links. You may register for any or all.
National Restaurant Association Releases State-of-the-Industry Findings

The NRA's research team has completed compilation of recent survey results, and the findings are fairly stark… roughly 100,000 restaurants have closed, three million jobs still lost, and 40% of operators say they are likely to close if there isn’t federal support in the coming months.

While the priority remains the passage of the priorities in our Blueprint for Restaurant Revival, for purposes of the remaining two weeks of the legislative session, the NRA is taking a pragmatic course and simply asking Congress to pass the ideas they already acknowledge have bipartisan, bicameral support, including:

  • a second round of PPP. There are changes Treasury needs to make to ensure mid-size operators can use it;
  • codify that business expenses paid with PPP loans are tax deductible;
  • refundable tax credits for restaurant investments in PPE, training, and costs to do more outdoor seating; and
  • enhance Employee Retention Tax Credit.

Read the NRA's letter to the Hill and press release. See a recent CNBC story here.
September is National Food Safety Month

This year's theme is Managing Risk: 30 Years of Food Safety. The ServSafe program is 30 years old, and the National Restaurant Association has put together resources for each week focused on various aspects of food safety. Learn more at www.foodsafetyfocus.com.
VA1 Tourism Summit - November 16 in Richmond!

The 2020 VA1 Tourism Summit is still on, although in a modified format. We'll gather for a one-day event in Richmond, but it will be jam-packed with amazing speakers and content focused on travel in the time of COVID-19; "back to business" strategies; diversity, equity, and inclusion; and more relevant and timely topics. Our keynotes include:
Adam Sacks, Founder and President of Tourism Economics will share his insight with VA1 attendees through his presentation “Preparing for the Recovery.”

Historic travel industry losses continue to mount. However, signs of recovery point to opportunity for destinations over the next 18 months. Adam Sacks will share Tourism Economics’ latest views on the economy, the current profile of travel, and expectations for how and when travel will fully recover.
Sheila Johnson, founder and CEO of Salamander Hotels & Resorts and Vice Chairman of Monumental Sports & Entertainment will sit down with emcee Kelli Lemon and for one of Kelli’s Coffee With Strangers podcasts. The sessions are intimate, unscripted discussions, and we can’t wait to see where this live Coffee With Strangers conversation goes!
Jack Johnson from Destinations International will present "Travel and Tourism as a Community Shared Value”

From a global pandemic to an economic recession to communities in social crisis, there is no new normal. It is more like a “great interruption.” Jack will provide his insights on the opportunities this moment in time presents and the need to transition travel and tourism from a traditional “heads in beds” approach to that of being a shared value in our community in order to position ourselves for the “next normal.”
Michael Dominguez is President and CEO of Associated Luxury Hotels International

AHLI provides global sales services for its exclusive collection of the world’s most prestigious hotels, resorts, cruise ships, and destination management companies, connecting these members to the meetings, incentives, convention and exhibitions industry’s leading meeting and event professionals. Michael will be sharing insight from his years in the industry and highlighting what's next.
The event will follow all guidelines for safety and distancing, and adhere to current federal, state, and locally-mandated protocols. Visit this page to learn more about how we are keeping VA1 healthy and safe! We continue to monitor the situation and will adjust plans as necessary. Learn more at www.va1tourismsummit.org. We are working to finalize the schedule and speakers now.
Government Affairs
Paid Quarantine Leave Bill Killed in Senate Committee

Yesterday, the Senate Commerce and Labor Committee voted 14-1 against House Bill 5116, proposed by Del. Elizabeth Guzman, D-Prince William. The result effectively closes the possibility of passing a quarantine-related sick leave requirement during the current special GA session. The same committee killed a similar bill earlier in the special session, also by a wide bipartisan margin.

VRLTA opposed the bill. Read more about it here in the Richmond Times-Dispatch or here in The Center Square.
Last Chance: Governor's Office Asking for Feedback on Paid Family & Medical Leave - Take the Survey

Under the Appropriations Act, the Governor's Secretary of Commerce and Trade and Chief Workforce Development Advisor are conducting a study on paid family and medical leave. Please provide feedback on your related experiences here. The deadline to complete the survey is Friday, September 18.
Upcoming Events
Mark Your Calendar!

  • September 23, 1 p.m. - National Restaurant Association Webinar: Cleaning, Sanitizing and Disinfecting During COVID-19. Register here.

  • September 29, 1 p.m. - National Restaurant Association Webinar: From the COVID-19 Trenches: Lessons Learned and Breakout Successes in the Foodservice Industry. Register here.

  • September 29, 3 p.m. - National Restaurant Association Webinar: Crystal Ball 2021: How Upcoming Elections Could Impact Restaurant Regulations. Register here.

  • September 30, 2-3 p.m. - VIRTUAL - Annual VRLTA Ordinary Awards. Register here.

  • October 1, 10-11 a.m. - VIRTUAL - VRLTA Lodging Component Meeting. Register here.

  • October 1, 2-3 p.m. - VIRTUAL - VRLTA Restaurant Component Meeting. Register here.

  • October 2, 10-11 a.m. - VIRTUAL - VRLTA Travel Component Meeting. Register here.

  • October 7, 1:30-3 p.m. - VIRTUAL - Membership and Board of Directors Meeting. Register here.

  • October 14, 10-11 a.m. - VIRTUAL - VRLTA Webinar Wednesday - To Your Health - Explore all of the member healthcare benefits offered through VRLTA! Register here.

  • October 27, 9:30 a.m. - Virginia Sporting Clay Shoot PAC and Restaurant Advocacy Fundraiser - Old Forge Sporting Clay, Providence Forge. See below for details.

  • November 16, all day - VA1 Tourism Summit, Omni Richmond Hotel. Register here.
Join Us for the Virginia Sporting Clay Shoot, October 27

This annual event benefits the restaurant industry through the Restaurant PAC and Restaurant Advocacy Fund. Join the fun on October 27 at the Old Forge Sporting Clay in Providence Forge. Registration begins at 9:30 a.m., and you can join as an individual shooter or at various sponsor levels. Don't miss it! To get more information or to RSVP, contact Annie McEniry at amceniry@restaurant.org or 202-331-5920.
Ordinary Awards - Register Now for Our Virtual Awards Event!
Our judges have selected the finalists for the upcoming Ordinary Awards, and it is an amazing group of individuals and businesses. Watch for an upcoming announcement.

Want to celebrate the best of our industry with us on September 30 at 2 p.m.? This year's event is fully virtual, so it's easy to attend!
Education & Training
AHLA Offering New Enhanced Version of COVID-19 Precautions for Hotels

AHLA is proud to announce a new enhanced version of COVID-19 Precautions for Hotels, a hotel-specific online training course designed specifically for cleaning and safety during the pandemic. This valuable training tool was developed in partnership with the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI) and now includes a brand new module focused on de-escalation training for employees. The new de-escalation module offers all hotel employees guidance on how to reduce tensions and promote a safe environment while maintaining the spirit of hospitality throughout all interactions. The course is available for $5 for individual purchase, and can also be purchased at an enterprise level.
ServSafe: Classes Are Up and Running

VRLTA's preferred ServSafe training partners are offering ServSafe training around the state - we currently are listing more than 35 classes in 11 different localities (including some classes in Spanish), so there is bound to be a class to meet your needs. ORS and RVA Food Safety are also offering test proctoring. Click here to learn more and see the entire upcoming schedule. Partners' classes are filling quickly, so register today!
More News You Can Use
Diageo Will Donate $1 per Tweet or Instagram Post to the VRLTA Relief Fund!

You Post. Diageo Donates. Feel The Love. ❤ Post on Twitter or Instagram using #BackToMyBarVA & Diageo will donate $1 to Virginia service industry professionals.

Between 12:01 a.m. ET on 9/1/2020 and 11:59:59 p.m. (ET) on 9/30/2020, for each social media post that uses the hashtag #BackToMyBarVA, Diageo will donate $1 to the Virginia Restaurant, Lodging & Travel Association. Maximum donation of $5,000. Must be 21 or older.

Highland Brewing is Supporting the Virginia Restaurant and Hospitality Relief Fund

We are pleased to announce that Highland Brewing is contributing a portion of sales of their Gaelic Ale to the VRLTA Restaurant and Hospitality Relief Fund!

Highland distributes in areas of the state such as Roanoke, Bristol, Martinsville, Salem, and Radford. Look for their products on the shelves and in restaurants starting in September and through the end of the year!

The Relief Fund has already distributed thousands of dollars to organizations around the state. To learn more about the recipient organizations, visit this page.

Thank you, Highland Brewing, for your support of restaurant and hospitality employees in Virginia!
AMEX Shop Small Offering Open For Business Kits

American Express Card Members can add your business to the Shop Small Map and get a free Open for Business Kit. Learn more at shopsmall.com.