Today, the NYC Hospitality Alliance is very happy to announce that the City Council passed the COVID surcharge bill we have been advocating for.
Believe it or not, NYC is the only jurisdiction in the country where only restaurants are discriminated against and prohibited from having the option of applying a clearly disclosed surcharge to menu prices. In fact, restaurants throughout the rest of the state can use a surcharge, and many use them successfully throughout the rest of the country, often in other progressive cities. In a COVID-19 world, many struggling restaurateurs have told us how helpful being permitted to use a surcharge would be to generate much needed revenue to purchase PPE, cover outdoor dining expenses, keep New Yorkers employed, and a lot more. We heard you loud and clear and fought for you. Now, this legislation will be sent to Mayor de Blasio, whom we expect will soon sign the bill into law, and then it takes effect immediately once signed.
Here are some details:
- Restaurants can use a surcharge from the law's effective date until they may operate at maximum indoor capacity and 90 days thereafter
- Must call it a "COVID-19 Recovery Charge" and clearly disclose the amount of such surcharge to the consumer before any item is ordered by placing it at the bottom of each menu page supplied to the consumer, etc.
- Surcharge may not exceed 10% of a consumer's total bill
- The written disclosure must be explicit that it is not a gratuity for employees
If you are one of the restaurants/bars interested in using a "COVID-19 Recovery Charge" please click here to read and understand all the provisions and requirements of this legislation.
A big thank you to all the City Council Members who voted in favor of this important restaurant recovery legislation and groups that supported this effort