First-ever joint UMA-ABA Capitol Hill Day set for April

WASHINGTON – The nation’s motorcoach operators are effectively doubling down on their legislative efforts in 2018 with the United Motorcoach Association and the American Bus Association holding their first-ever joint Capitol Hill Day lobbying event April 10-11.

Traditionally, each group converges on Capitol Hill at a different time and with slightly different priorities.

But a push by newly elected UMA Board Chair Gladys Gillis for a joint event has given members of both groups the opportunity to work together with the hope of making greater strides toward shared priorities.

“I’d like to see the UMA and ABA legislative agendas come together and have the associations speak with one unified voice,” Gillis, owner and CEO of Starline Luxury Coaches, said in an interview with Bus & Motorcoach News shortly after taking office.

UMA President and CEO Stacy Tetschner said it is exciting to be part of the new venture, “bringing together the energy of both our associations. There are so many areas where our legislative goals are aligned that it just makes sense.”

Peter Pantuso, president and CEO of the ABA, said the association leadership and staff are excited about the idea of holding a joint Capitol Hill Day.

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“The motorcoach industry has always faced the same issues in Washington, regardless of which association members belong to, and being able to bring those issues to Capitol Hill in a cohesive manner will make this year’s event more effective for the membership of both organizations,” Pantuso said.

The joint UMA-ABA Capitol Hill Day event is open to members of both organizations and will include a professional legislative briefing for all participants, a group dinner, a customized schedule of appointments with legislators and a debriefing meeting at the end of the day.

Participants in the event, also referred to as “Fly-in,” will have the opportunity to stress to lawmakers that their businesses provide jobs and services in their communities. Members of Congress tend to pay attention when constituents take time to speak out about the realities of operating a business.

Capitol Hill Day is free to attend and operators are only responsible for their hotel room and transportation to and from Washington, D.C.

UMA is requesting that participants book their rooms by March 20 at

Here is the schedule for the event:

April 10


  • 1:30 p.m. – 4 p.m.: Legislative briefing and Capitol Hill instruction at the Homewood Suites
  • 6:30 p.m.: Group dinner, sponsored by United Bus Technology 

April 11

  • 7 a.m. – 8 a.m.: Breakfast and last minute questions and updates at the Homewood Suites
  • 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.: Individual meetings with U.S. senators/representatives (arranged for you)
  • 4 p.m. – 6 p.m.: Capitol Hill meeting debrief and reception

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