by Cheryl-Anne Sturken | August 01, 2008

The average hotel room tax in 2008 was 13.4 percent per night, per room, up from 12.4 percent in 2003, according to research by the Hotel & Lodging Association.

Chicago carpenters signed a two-year contract June 1 that might ease costs for exhibitors. New rules include straight-time rates (instead of time-and-a-half) from 4:30 to 8:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, and time-and-a-half (instead of double overtime) for up to 12 hours on Saturday.

The Atlantic City Convention center is installing 290,000 square feet of solar panels, which will provide one-quarter of the energy consumed by the center. The move is expected to save $4 million over the next 20 years.

The Greater Phoenix Convention & Visitors Bureau has formed the Religious Advisory Summit, a group of 10 religious meeting planners and various suppliers, to focus on the specific needs of religious meeting groups.

The Internal Revenue Service upped the reimbursable mileage rate by 8 cents, to 58.5 cents per mile, through 2008.