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Vaccine requirements in Las Vegas could cause confusion, changes in attendance

The Las Vegas Convention Center West Hall expansion totaled $989 million dollars and spans 1.4 million square feet of space.
Posted at 11:37 PM, Aug 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-18 12:44:26-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Just one day after Gov. Steve Sisolak allowed large venues to require vaccines, we have seen both the Las Vegas Raiders and CES jump on board.

The main goals are saving lives and keeping Las Vegas open. Though there is some concern about creating confusion.

"Last thing we want is uncertainty, where you walk into one building and have one requirement, and then walk into another venue with another requirement," said Jeremy Aguero, an analyst in Las Vegas.

With both the Raiders and the CES 2022 requiring vaccines, it is thought that more events will follow suit.

"I'm not going to give them anything other than credit," he said. "Is there risk associated with it? Of course, there is. There's always risk in leadership."

And we talked to exhibitors about their thoughts on how this could affect attendance.

"I think over time people will see the benefit and it may deter it for a little bit, but I think it will bounce right back," said Norman Couture, an exhibitor at the Pizza Expo.

RELATED: List of venues, shows, employers requiring vaccination or negative COVID test

"Businesses? We make decisions," said Pamela Fusco, an exhibitor that backed out of Super Zoo. "And if our decision is 'You can't participate unless you are vaccinated,' then you can't fault us by saying, 'You're not allowing me because I'm not vaccinated.' Nope, that's your decision. You want to join? Get a vaccine. If not? See you next year."

The decision to require proof of vaccination is at the discretion of trade show producers. And the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority says it supports CES' decision--its biggest show--to require them.

"This is not the same problem we were dealing with 12 months ago," said Aguero. "It is an entirely different problem, and I would suggest to you that it is one that is entirely solvable if we take the steps to do that."