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September 30, 2011 -
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Did you know that the Federal government racks up $25,000,000,000 annually in travel expenditures, between employee travel and federally funded conferences? And did you also know U.S. Federal Government travelers can only stay in properties listed on the Hotel-Motel National Master List when on official travel?
This was brought about by the Hotel and Motel Fire Safety Act of 1990, which is aimed at improving fire safety in hotels, motels, and other places of public accommodation.
Each Federal agency must ensure that at least 90 percent of travel nights are spent in such properties. Some agencies, such as FEMA, require all travel nights to be spent in approved accommodations.
Among it's requirements, the act says that every guestroom in a hotel or motel have an AC-powered, also known as "hard wired," smoke alarm installed in accordance with NFPA 72. If the building is more than three stories high, it must also have a full automatic sprinkler system, with at least one sprinkler head in every guestroom.
As well, each year the General Services Administration (GSA) makes a survey of the cost of lodging around the country. From this information, GSA sets the per diem rates for each area in the country. A hotel must be on the Master List to be included in the survey.
The U.S. Fire Administration compiles the Hotel-Motel National Master List. For more information, go to http://www.usfa.dhs.gov/hotel/.
Source: The U.S. Fire Administration