Key Speaker

The Honorable Sharice Davids

U.S. Representative (KS-03)

Key Topics

  • The economic impact of COVID-19
  • Need for additional economic relief
  • Value and challenges of various federal COVID relief programs
  • Paycheck Protection Program
  • Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program
  • Community Development Block Grant Program

Discussion Summary

The Travel Industry Association of Kansas, Olathe Convention & Visitors Bureau, Kansas City KS Convention & Visitors Bureau, Merriam KS Convention & Visitors Bureau and other members of the local community held a virtual roundtable with Rep. Sharice Davids (D-KS). During the meeting, the group shared their concerns about new COVID-19 restrictions, including rules that limited gatherings to 10 people or less, spaced 6 feet apart or more. In the past, places like Cider Hill Family Orchard hosted many weddings, family reunions, and graduation parties, but then saw about 50 events canceled at the outset of the pandemic. They didn’t have a deposit for three months, causing great hardship and anxiety. Visitor spending in Kansas fell by $1.9 billion in 2020. Before the pandemic, the industry generated $589 million in state and local taxes, equating to $520 in tax savings for every Kansas household. Throughout the meeting, the group advocated for COVID relief programs, noting the difficulty travel businesses and DMOs experienced in accessing such programs–including the Paycheck Protection Program, the Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program, and the Community Development Block Grant Program.


  • Natalie Bright, Travel Industry Association of Kansas
  • Alan Carr, Kansas City Kansas Convention & Visitors’ Bureau
  • Karen Crane, Convention & Visitors’ Bureau, Merriam KS
  • Treon Glenn, U.S. Travel Association
  • Bridgette Jobe, Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism
  • Kelly Peetoom, Travel Industry Association of Kansas

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