McCormick Place Overhaul Legislation Becomes Law
The new law calls for:
• New labor work rules that reduce crew sizes, require less overtime pay and eliminate hassles for customers.
• Expanding exhibitor rights, allowing customers to do their own work, regardless of booth size.
• The appointment of a Trustee, former MPEA CEO Jim Reilly, to oversee operations during an 18 month transition period and select a private manager for McCormick Place.
• Restructuring capital debt to allow the MPEA to further lower costs to customers and put the MPEA on sound financial footing.
• Allowing shows to select outside electrical and food service contractors.
• Auditing contracts to ensure savings are passed on to customers.
• Make recommendations to whether Navy Pier should remain in control by the Authority or become an independent entity.
“We listened to our customers and pushed for reforms that address their concerns. This new law introduces sweeping reforms that will transform Chicago’s meetings and convention industry,” said David Causton, General Manager of McCormick Place. “We now have very competitive market offerings that put our customers first across the board. It’s a new day in Chicago’s convention industry.”
Chicago customers are pleased with the outcome.
“This is a victory, not only for Chicago and the State of Illinois, but also for the 2,000 exhibitors who participate annually at the International Home + Housewares Show,” said Mia Rampersad, Vice President, Tradeshow for the International Housewares Association. “The IHA has hosted our annual event in Chicago for more than 70 years and believes it is the best convention destination in the world. This law will make McCormick Place a more cost-effective trade show venue and IHA’s preferred destination for years to come.”
The new law also provides additional public funding to assist the CCTB in marketing Chicago as a convention destination. The CCTB has served as the sales and marketing arm for the city for more than 30 years.