With the 2019-2020 legislative session in full swing, the House of Representatives and Senate have both been primarily consumed with developing the FY2020 state budget. The House finalized their budget in late April, and the Senate finished their budget process in late May. Now both bodies will appoint a Conference Committee to work out differences between the two versions of the budget, with a final state budget due to be in place for the start of the fiscal year on July 1. A change to the state law in 2016 allows for the direct allocation of funding to the Massachusetts Marketing Partnership and the regional tourism councils, taking those items out of consideration for the yearly budget debate. Other items of interest in these budgets: $2 million program for the promotion of the restaurant industry, run by MOTT, with funds coming from the new Gaming proceeds - included in the House Language requiring distribution of RTC grants by September 1 of the current fiscal year - included in both the House and Senate Amendments to include more funding for Visitor Information Centers and to make further changes to the new Short Term Rental law were all rejected. Legislative committees are all also proceeding with the business of bill hearings. This process will continue until the Legislature breaks for the summer recess on July 31 and recommence after Labor Day when the Legislature comes back into session. We expect that the bulk of work on legislative matters will take place this fall and next spring 2020.