Rosenbluth International, the third largest travel management company in the world, is pleased to announce that the lobbying efforts of its Chairman and CEO, Hal F. Rosenbluth, have proved instrumental with the submission of Bill number S.1578, entitled, American Travel Industry Stabilization Act.
This bill is designed to further stabilize the travel industry and was specifically introduced on the U.S. Senate floor yesterday afternoon, October 25, by Senator Byron Dorgan (D-ND) along with Senator Arlen Specter (R-PA), Senator Kent Conrad (D-ND), Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) and Senator Daniel K. Inouye (D-HI).
A few weeks prior to the introduction of this bill, Mr. Rosenbluth held private, individual sessions with approximately 15 senators, 3 congressmen and their respective staff members on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. During these meetings he discussed the importance of the travel agency community. Following these sessions he was asked to join a panel of travel industry leaders to testify at a hearing called by the U.S. Senate to examine the effect that the events of September 11 had on the U.S. tourism industry.
At the Senate hearing, which was held on October 12, Rosenbluth represented nearly 30,000 agencies across the nation. He explained the critical role travel agencies play within the industry, pointing out that agencies facilitate 80 percent of all airline bookings, thus holding a vital post within the travel distribution channel. He illustrated that if the agency community became unavailable to corporations and the travelling public at large, the airline industry would need to hire 300,000 reservationists to maintain the same volume of bookings. This would be a challenging endeavor for airlines, which have already had to close numerous reservation centers and lay off over 130,000 people due to the impact of the September 11 attacks.
Following his testimony, Rosenbluth dedicated much of his time to lobbying Congress on behalf of the travel agency community and contributing to the creation of Bill S.1578, American Travel Industry Stabilization Act.
“It has been an exhilarating experience to see how swiftly the United States government can act when the private and public sectors fully understand the issues before them,” Mr. Rosenbluth said. “I am honored that I was able to work with Congress on behalf of all of the agencies that are in dire need of government help.”
If Bill S.1578 is passed, President Bush will be authorized to issue $5 billion in Federal loan guarantees to eligible travel-related businesses. Eligible businesses are defined as those whose business operations were directly and adversely affected by the government shutdown of the airline industry following the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001. This includes businesses that had a contractual arrangement with an air carrier to provide goods or services, including those with a contractual relationship with the Airline Reporting Corporation (ARC). Additionally, it would support non-aeronautical for-profit businesses operating at an airport engaged in the sale of consumer goods or services to the public. Loan guarantees under this Act will be based on the ability of the business to repay the loan without regard to collateral.
According to Mr. Rosenbluth, “The government has been very understanding of our needs and I believe that if passed, Bill S.1578 will accommodate travel agencies of all sizes.”
Early next week, additional information on the bill (S.1578) will be posted on thomas.loc.gov.
About Rosenbluth International
Rosenbluth International, headquartered in Philadelphia, Pa., USA provides comprehensive corporate travel management services worldwide. Rosenbluth International is a privately held company with one of the largest travel presence in the world. With annual sales in excess of 6 billion USD and 5,200 associates, Rosenbluth International owns and manages locations in 24 countries with joint ventures and affiliations in several other countries. Founded in 1892 and recognized as a leader in integrated information management, Rosenbluth International continues to develop innovative business applications and integrated systems which enable it to provide highly personalized service to its clients. The travel management company has also been ranked among FORTUNE magazine`s 100 Best Companies to Work for in America. Rosenbluth International is located on the World Wide Web at www.rosenbluth.com.