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    Engage Your Local Public Officials

    Benjamin Franklin once said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” This couldn’t be truer than when it comes to the regulatory issues that are affecting vacation rental managers across the country. There are several steps you can take to inform public officials about your business and the industry as a whole.

    Contact City Hall
    • Call or email your city officials to introduce yourself and your business.
    • Don’t forget staff members. Elected officials are important but there are many staff members who can affect your business including treasurers, clerks, city managers and planning department officials.
    • Email or write to your public officials and invite them for a visit to your office or to a rental property. Introduce them to your employees and allow them to see what goes into the upkeep of a vacation rental. This is a great way to emphasize the beneficial economic side of the industry.
    Speak at a council meeting
    • City councils, town councils and county boards all have public meetings. Most communities have an open topic section of their meeting for attendees to make statements or express opinions on issues that are being discussed in the meeting. Don’t wait for an issue to come up that affects you, use the time to introduce yourself and promote the positive aspects your business brings to the community.
    Keeping the momentum going
    • Add your public officials to your mailing lists. Send them press releases, email blasts and company newsletters.
    • Engage public officials on social media. If you are having a special event, utilize social media tagging to inform your local, state and federal elected officials of the event.
    • Saying thank you never hurt anyone. If you meet with a public official, be sure to send a thank you note or email after the meeting. This helps to keep communication open in the future.
    Keeping public officials aware and up-to-date on your business helps prevent local regulatory battles and also helps the industry as a whole. Our combined efforts to inform leaders on the economic benefits and importance vacation rentals play, especially in the travel and tourism industry, are crucial. Leaders are less inclined to make harsh decisions toward local businesses they are familiar with. It is never too late to engage your public officials — start today!
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