Blaming rising credit card fees, Parasole has begun skimming 2 percent of its servers’ credit card tips, reports City Pages. The local mega-group (Chino Latino, Manny’s, Burger Jones, among others) refused to comment on the policy, which may in effect trade a small cash bonus for a PR black eye and diminished staff morale. UPDATE: Kip Clayton of Parasole responds (response printed in full):
“Hi James … I have no comment regarding how we compensate Parasole employees … It is our policy not to comment on employee compensation.
There is certainly a broader, hot topic within the restaurant industry
Restaurants in general are in a low margin, highly competitive business. Most restaurants struggle to remain competitive in the wake rapidly increasing direct costs such as rising food, labor & supply costs, bank card fees & transportation costs.
Given the increased usage of credit & debit cards there is a restaurant industry movement to pass all or a portion of the credit or debit card fees on tips only (not the fees on the entire guest check) to the tipped employees. For example if the guest tips in the amount of $10 on a $50 credit card transaction, the tipped employee would pay between 2 & 3% or $0.20 ( Twenty cents) on their $10 tip. See state statute 5200.0080 Gratuities & Tip Credits for background on the topic.”