Meeting with Lt. Gov. Green & General Hara
We have been holding a series of meetings with State officials and members of Governor Ige's administration to discuss the possibility of a booster shot requirement to the Safe Travels program. Today, members of the HLTA Board and the Hawai'i Tourism, Business, & Community Coalition met with Lt. Governor Josh Green and Major General Kenneth Hara as well as HTA President & CEO John De Fries and HVCB President John Monahan to express our concerns regarding the booster requirement and reaffirm our commitment to the health of our guests, staff, and the greater community.
It was an extremely productive meeting during which we conveyed our desire to move forward with supporting recommendations to emphasize public health guidance over further mandates. It is clear that we must stay the course and continue our efforts to get our people vaccinated and boosted while maintaining the strictest of health and safety standards at our places of business. Because, at the end of the day, Governor Ige will ultimately be making the final decision on this matter.
Everything is currently trending in our favor on this issue; case counts are going down, hospitalizations are decreasing, and our entire community is beginning to understand that we will have to learn to live with COVID-19 as we can begin to resume our lives. Continuing to rebuild the local tourism economy is the first step to restoring both international travel and large events, two significant sectors of our industry that have not yet begun the recovery process.
You may have seen over the weekend that I sent out a short survey regarding HLTA members' vaccination and booster rates. The initial feedback was outstanding but the more data that we can get, the better we can illustrate to the State that our industry is leading the way in terms of vaccinating our people. If you have not yet filled out the survey, you can find it at this link. It will take just a few moments of your time, and you may opt to keep your business name confidential.
Hawai'i Hotel & Restaurant Show
Speaking of the importance of large, structured events, The Hawai'i Hotel & Restaurant Show is set to return to the Hawai'i Convention Center on March 30 and 31. This will be our second annual show, and we are most looking forward to this signature event.
In today's edition of the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, there is a full-page ad reminding prospective vendors that there is still time to secure a booth for this year's show. If you are considering doing so, please contact either Gerald Shintaku at firstname.lastname@example.org or Jared Higashi at email@example.com.
We are currently working hard with our partners at the Star-Advertiser and the Hawai'i Restaurant Association to plan and host a knockout trade show, and I hope that we will see you there.
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