New Spending Bill Bans Restaurants From Skimming Tips

New Spending Bill Bans Restaurants From Skimming Tips

President Donald Trump just signed a $1.3 trillion spending bill into law Friday that included a section that addresses restaurants and makes it clear that employers may not pocket any portion of tips that diners have left for restaurant staff.

Saru Jayaraman, president of the nonprofit Restaurant Opportunities Center said to CNN Money, “We beat them. I think they realized how outrageous what they were proposing sounded to the public, and basically they backed down.”

But that “them” Jayaraman was referring to must have been Congress, as Restaurant industry representatives also showed approval for the rule.

Angelo Amador, senior VP at the National Restaurant Association, argued that most employers wouldn't skim tips even if they were allowed to.

"A decision by a restaurant to retain some or all of the customer tips rather than distributing them to the hourly staff would be unpopular with employees and guests alike, and it could severely damage the public's perception of the restaurant," Amador wrote in his comment on the proposed rule.

The language in the spending bill also does another big thing: It allows employers to pool tips and distribute them among staff, as long as the employer also pays the full minimum wage. Many owners have long sought to boost the pay of kitchen workers and bussers by forcing servers to share their tips.

That's fine with labor advocates at the National Employment Law Project, who say that pooling tips is a good way to create wage equity, as long workers are paid the full minimum wage and tips aren't shared with managers or any other supervisors. "We enthusiastically support this compromise," said Judy Conti, the group's director of federal affairs.

You can read more about the new spending bill and its implications at CNN Money.

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The War at Home: How to Mend the Front of House vs. Back of House Family Feud

The War at Home: How to Mend the Front of House vs. Back of House Family Feud

By Jim Berman, Foodable Industry Expert

The waged war between front-of-house and back-of-house staff is as old as restaurants themselves. Cooks are viewed as a bunch of foul-mouthed, dirty drunkards looking for the next shortcut to get off of the clock and get out to the bar. Servers are seen as money-hungry, short-timers who bide their time before their “real career” starts, while simultaneously flirting with cute customers and pinching fries from guests’ plates, rubbernecking their way through the restaurant spectacle. The two together predate any historic conflict. Does this locked battle ever end?

Here’s what some experts had to say...and some tips on quelling this family feud!

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