At this year’s Car Rental Show in Las Vegas, ACRA updated attendees on the hot legislative issues affecting our industry around the 50 states. As you heard, there were proposals from Florida and New York to Illinois, Hawaii, Texas and California … and on and on. And these are on top of the congressional activity in Washington, D.C.
A key component of our industry’s success is and will continue to be our ability to be as unified as possible on key issues. ACRA Board Member Frank Colonna urged attendees to not only get involved legislatively, but to also work together — yes, with competitors — on public policy issues that impact us all.
McKenzie Spalding of Choice Auto Rental sits to the left of Sen. Roger Chamberlain (R-Minn.) during the Senate Commerce Committee hearing regarding Minnesota's anti-steering bill. Spalding's work at a state level speaks to the opportunities open to ACRA's newly created State Director positions.
Additionally, we heard several industry veterans further underscore the point about the importance of relationships and that we, as an industry, need to be engaged at all levels of government. “All politics is local,” said ACRA Board Member Bob Muhs of Avis-Budget Group.
And Ray Wagner of Enterprise Holdings, the 2013 Russell Bruno Award winner, reminded us that “if we aren’t at the table, then likely we’re on the menu.” Very true, particularly when it comes to excise taxes.
This year has been an extremely active legislative season for the car rental industry across the land. And there is no reason to believe that future years will be any less hectic. ACRA continues to be there to support our initiatives.
However, while ACRA has more than 250 members, it has only one staff person, Sharon Faulkner. And since human cloning is an impossibility (not that ACRA supports human cloning if it were), Sharon cannot be in multiple places at the same time.
So … ACRA is calling on you. We are looking for a few good car rental operators to step forward and become ACRA State Directors.