Tiered minimum wage system best for tipped employees

  • Article by: Alan Ackerberg
  • Updated: March 20, 2013 - 9:03 PM

In its March 10 editorial, the Star Tribune wrote that wages for tipped employees “were a high-profile issue in the 2010 gubernatorial race. That election’s outcome suggests that Minnesotans believe an employer’s duty to pay a minimal wage is not diminished when that employee receives often unpredictable additional pay from customers.”

  • 11
  • Comments

  • Results per page:
applejeffMar. 20, 1310:09 PM

I agree with most of what you have to say, with the exception of tips being reported for tax purposes. I have a hard time believing waitstaff and bartenders report an accurate income from tips to their employers. And what benefit is there to the employer for them to do so? It only results in higher taxes for them. Having been a dishwasher and a fry cook in my teen years, I was always annoyed with the whole tipping thing. I made sure plates leaving the kitchen were presented well and, as a busboy/dishwasher, made sure the tables and dishes were spotless. I never received a dime from any tip left by a customer for my portion of the dining experience the customer received.

8
8
hermajestyMar. 20, 1310:38 PM

OK, there's another restaurant chain I'm going to boycott. Another business owner who thinks he's more important than the people who do the actual day-to-day work.

11
9
WaterloverMar. 21, 1312:43 AM

applejeff- I too spent plenty of time in the kitchen watching everyone outside the kitchen door getting paid CASH for some of my efforts. The thing that has changed since my time 20+ years ago behind the door is that nearly everyone pays with a Credit Card today. When people pay and TIP with a Credit Card its tracked, when its tracked, the servers and employers pay based on what tips show up on the Credit Card. Partly because I don't like the whole Big Brother idea (although I think tipped EE's as well as everyone else needs to pay taxes) I tend to tip cash, just to make it harder for Big Brother to keep tabs on everyone.

1
9
gophfan10101Mar. 21, 13 5:46 AM

I so get a kick out of folks like hermajesty here saying "I'm going to boycott so and so". Its hilarious. You do realize that if you boycotted EVERY company that did something you disagreed with, you wouldn't be able to shop anywhere or eat anywhere. Oh, and unless you ARE willing to do that instead of only boycotting those companies that happen to be in the news this week because of reason, you are a complete hypocrite and fraud.

3
7
phatcatpatMar. 21, 13 7:57 AM

No more tipping! These people already make the minimum wage. The job is a non-skilled position and deserves nothing about minimum wage.

2
12
beebee82Mar. 21, 13 9:25 AM

applejeff, the vast majority of eateries today have computer systems for placing orders. They track the amount of sales each server makes that day and compute what they are "supposed" to be tipped for taxing purposes. It may have been easier to hide tips from the IRS back in the day, but not so much anymore.

Note to letter writer: Outside of the cities, servers make no where near that $20+ hourly figure. And while those bartenders and servers are perhaps making $22 an hour in Minneapolis, they're paying $1,000 or more a month for a crappy studio/one bedroom apartment.

Anyone who thinks servers and bartenders have a sweet, overpaid gig — try it for a weekend.

7
3
unclemushyMar. 21, 13 9:57 AM

Is everyone OK with reducing the percentage of the tip since minimum wage is going up? Why not? You do know that tips were meant to supplement the lower hourly rate up to minimum wage. So, you now think you should have it both ways? I don't think so. Raise minimum wage and start leaving 5%. That is fair.

3
7
unclemushyMar. 21, 1310:06 AM

"Anyone who thinks servers and bartenders have a sweet, overpaid gig — try it for a weekend." I have and they do. Going to school I was able to make some great money working just a few hours a week! Great gig. I knew NO ONE trying to raise a family working as a server. If anyone did it was because they were uneducated and a single parent. The industry is perfect for young people and others who want quick cash and flexible hours. Why do you want to destroy this?

2
6
msminnMar. 21, 1311:36 AM

Looking at the headline, I say to myself, "This is probably written by someone who (A)will never have to work for minimum wage, and (B)is most likely someone who would profit from a tiered minimum wage." So I get to the bottom and read, "Alan Ackerberg, of St. Louis Park, is a partner in Parasole Restaurant Holdings Inc." That's a BINGO... Love hearing "conservatives" talk about how the 47% need to learn the "dignity" of work, yet treat those who do work as nothing more than perpetual money-making machines for themselves.

5
1
gandalf48Mar. 21, 1311:37 AM

beebee82 - [applejeff, the vast majority of eateries today have computer systems for placing orders. They track the amount of sales each server makes that day and compute what they are "supposed" to be tipped for taxing purposes. It may have been easier to hide tips from the IRS back in the day, but not so much anymore...Anyone who thinks servers and bartenders have a sweet, overpaid gig — try it for a weekend.] *** They do assume some tips today, but the number isn't anywhere close to the number of actual tips that servers receive...usually the number is around 7-8% estimated in tips. Sure, serving is hard work, you deal with a lot of idiots and you give up your evenings and weekends...but it's also one job that doesn't require a high level of skills and that you can jump into with little to no experience and earn $20+/hr. I know my wife was making $40+/hr when serving at a dive bar in Minneapolis...it's not for everyone and it's not the most glorious job but it is good money without requiring a large set of complex skills.

0
5

Comment on this story   |  

ADVERTISEMENT

  • about opinion

  • The Opinion section is produced by the Editorial Department to foster discussion about key issues. The Editorial Board represents the institutional voice of the Star Tribune and operates independently of the newsroom.

  • Submit a letter or commentary
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT