AA Board with Speaker of the House of Representatives Milton Dick

Peak industry body Accommodation Australia (AA) has held its first national board meeting at Parliament House in Canberra to discuss a range of timely issues affecting the sector.

Respected accommodation leaders from across Australia were in attendance at the inaugural meeting with Federal Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs, Andrew Giles, joining as a special guest.

“It was fantastic to host the first-ever board meeting of Accommodation Australia at Parliament House – this was the culmination of years of hard work by many people and it was great to see the dream finally become a reality,” said AA Chair Leanne Harwood.

“To have Minister Giles make time to attend and speak directly to board members on a range of issues was the perfect end to the day.”

L-R: AA Vice President, Sean Hunt, Minister Andrew Giles and AA Chair Leanne Harwood

The inaugural meeting covered issues such as migration, industrial relations, vocational education and training and short-term rentals, as well as the proposed $5 hotel bed tax in Victoria.

“Board members rightly saw the proposal as an unfair new tax on hotels and tourists at a time the

sector still hasn’t recovered from the impacts on Covid,” said AA CEO, Michael Johnson.

“The proposed tax should be on the actual short-term rental market contributing to the lack of housing in Victoria – not on hotels which have nothing to do with the rental problems.”

International travel was another important topic with board members discussing the importance of Chinese tourism and the international student cap.