By Annette Shailer

The Australian Hotels Association (AHA) has added to its ranks with another former-labour staffer coming onboard.

Jason Bartlett, who was the deputy chief-of-staff to the disgraced former state development minister, Ian Macdonald, has joined the AHA NSW to manage its media strategy.

Bartlett will start as the AHA NSW communications manager today (Aug 23), taking up his position alongside another former Labor party staffer, John Whelan, who is the AHA's national director of responsible gambling.

The AHA’s national office also recently appointed Steven Fanner as corporate affairs manager, with Fanner commencing the role on August 1.

Based in Canberra, Fanner’s appointment will see him take responsibility for many of the AHA’s public affairs functions, as well as assisting the CEO with government relations.

AHA national CEO, Des Crowe, said Fanner’s experience in the AHA, where he has headed up its ACT Branch, would be helpful in the national office.

“Steve comes to the role with a very sound understanding of the issues facing the industry from his time in heading up our ACT Branch. With an increasing federal focus on many of the regulatory issues facing hotels it is important for the AHA to have a strong presence in Canberra and having another advocate for the industry here in our national office will help to achieve this,” he said.

“The AHA’s ability to build relationships and work with the key decision makers at a federal level will be critical to maintaining a manageable business environment for our members.”

There have been a number of appointments to the industry body with political links, with former NSW health minister, Reba Meagher, coming onboard as an adviser to the NSW AHA in May.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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