Letters To the Editor

(Published 2/1/19)

Editor,

I read the article in the Jan. 25 edition concerning legislation designed to ultimately raise the minimum wage in Maryland to $15 per hour. 

My focus was on restaurant industry opposition to the increase. 

This got me to thinking about the whole concept of 15-20 percent service tips at restaurants. This makes absolutely no sense to me. 

Servers deserve a decent wage. However, I am thinking what is the main factor that results in a very pleasant experience at a restaurant and brings me back again. Service? Hell no. 

The quality of service is a plus, but that certainly is not the determining factor. It is the food. If the meal is lousy, I do not really care how great the service might be, I am not coming back. However, if the food is great, I will gladly overlook long waits for service. 

So why does it make sense to tip the server for a really great meal when the server merely took the order and brought it out. We never think of tipping the person who actually prepared the meal. 

The bottom line is our food service industry, like our healthcare industry, is screwed up. 

 Just like we should have universal healthcare like all other industrialized countries, we should have a restaurant industry where the restaurant owner pays everyone, the cooks, the servers and the busboys, a decent wage that is at least the minimum of $15 per hour. 

I do not take out a calculator, but generally tip 20 percent at restaurants and a bit more if it is a low-cost breakfast. 

If a restaurant is not about to incorporate a 20 percent increase in their price and be able to pay everyone a decent wage for their work, I do not think they have a viable economic model in their operation.

Jim Thomas

Cloverly, Maryland

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