Six Daytona tourism board members attended private hoteliers meeting

DAYTONA BEACH — When six members of the Halifax Area Advertising Authority board of directors attended a private meeting recently to discuss ideas for improving beachside properties and elevating Daytona Beach’s appeal to visitors, it may have undermined the intent of Florida’s open meetings and public records law, an expert on the law said. 

HAAA board members Jim Berkley, Linda Bowers, Samir Naran, John Betros, Steve Farley and Androse Bell attended a private meeting of 16 hotel executives and owners on Sept. 23 at The Plaza Resort & Spa in Daytona Beach.

The meeting was organized by Bob Davis, president and CEO of the Lodging & Hospitality Association of Volusia County, and Jonathan Abraham Eid, CEO of Los Angeles-based Vienna Capital, new owner of The Plaza Resort & Spa.

Under the theme “Hoteliers Unite,” the meeting included an update from Davis and Eid on a year’s worth of meetings that they have had with various Daytona Beach and Volusia County officials, beachside residents, business owners and others seeking to foster communication that could lead to improvements in infrastructure, code enforcement and other issues.

Others also offered suggestions that touched on topics ranging from improving the appearance of main roads leading to the beachside and reducing the number of empty storefronts and eyesore properties along State Road A1A, according to meeting minutes provided by the hotel association.