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Tue May 28, 2013, 05:25 PM

NY high court eyes who can tap Starbucks' tip jars

Source: Houston Chronicle

By MICHAEL VIRTANEN, Associated Press | May 28, 2013 | Updated: May 28, 2013 4:08pm

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) Starbucks is defending its tip-sharing policy with its attorney telling New York's top court that baristas and shift supervisors divide up the cash jar weekly because they essentially provide the same customer service.

Attorney Rex Heinke (HYN'-kee) says assistant store managers are excluded because they have an essentially different role and "real power" over the others.

He says Tuesday that the employer's role is to come up with "a reasonable, fair system" and the company does have authority to exclude from tip-sharing even those employees deemed eligible under state law.

<snip>

Read more: http://www.chron.com/news/us/article/NY-high-court-eyes-who-can-tap-Starbucks-tip-jars-4552087.php

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Arrow 39 replies Author Time Post
Reply NY high court eyes who can tap Starbucks' tip jars (Original post)
marble falls May 2013 OP
NYC_SKP May 2013 #1
NaturalHigh May 2013 #3
happyslug May 2013 #15
AtheistCrusader May 2013 #23
csziggy May 2013 #32
SkyDaddy7 May 2013 #34
bitchkitty May 2013 #35
doxyluv13 May 2013 #36
ForgoTheConsequence May 2013 #39
Gormy Cuss May 2013 #37
ForgoTheConsequence May 2013 #38
Skeeter Barnes May 2013 #2
joeglow3 May 2013 #4
hack89 May 2013 #5
joeglow3 May 2013 #6
hack89 May 2013 #8
joeglow3 May 2013 #25
DonRedwood May 2013 #9
joeglow3 May 2013 #26
happyslug May 2013 #16
Skeeter Barnes May 2013 #10
Posteritatis May 2013 #18
joeglow3 May 2013 #27
Omaha Steve May 2013 #7
Xithras May 2013 #13
Skeeter Barnes May 2013 #14
Xithras May 2013 #17
Posteritatis May 2013 #20
Xithras May 2013 #22
Skeeter Barnes May 2013 #21
joeglow3 May 2013 #28
Skeeter Barnes May 2013 #29
joeglow3 May 2013 #30
NeedleCast May 2013 #11
lupulin May 2013 #12
Posteritatis May 2013 #19
cosmicone May 2013 #24
Ter May 2013 #31
cosmicone May 2013 #33


Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #1)

Tue May 28, 2013, 05:47 PM

3. I read about that too.

A group of loud protesters carrying signs in front of that place would not hurt my feelings.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #1)

Tue May 28, 2013, 06:33 PM

15. But that couple paid more then the Minimun wage, i.e NO tip allowance

servers at the Scottsdale, Ariz. restaurant were paid between $8 and $14 an hour

Tip allowance permits employer to pay servers as low as $2.13 per hour. Technically if a server's tips and the "Tip Allowance" are below minimum wage, the employer is suppose to make up the difference, but you try get the employer to pay AND keep your job. Remember the Employer also has to WITHHOLD taxes from the Employee, including taxes on the tips.

Sorry, I would pay any servers I employ a set wage and tell them all tips below to the company. That way, the employee knows how much they will get, I do not have to track their tips for Income Tax withholding and any tips are listed as "Money Received".

You may not like it, but I have had plenty of servers come into my office and would prefer that the employer gets all tips, if they received $7.15 per hour instead of $2.13 per hour.

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Response to happyslug (Reply #15)

Tue May 28, 2013, 07:20 PM

23. If that's the case then the customer should know they aren't tipping the workers.

The whole tip thing is to incentivize good service. If that isn't how the employee's compensation is tied to the transaction, then the customer should know the tip is going to the employer, not the employee.

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Response to happyslug (Reply #15)

Tue May 28, 2013, 11:42 PM

32. If they paid that well, why do they have such a high turn over

Over 100 employees in a year, if I remember correctly. During a bad time to find a job, a company that actually paid $8 to $14 an hour as they claimed would have people waiting in line to take those jobs.

Of course, given the insanity of the bosses at Amy's Baking Company there would not be enough money in the world for me to walk into the place much less work there.

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Response to happyslug (Reply #15)

Wed May 29, 2013, 07:00 AM

34. Would you post a huge sign alerting your customers...

That any tips they give go straight to the owner & those serving get nothing? Or would you allow customers to tip thinking the server would get them but in reality you are taking it for yourself?

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Response to happyslug (Reply #15)

Wed May 29, 2013, 10:33 AM

35. I used to make over $100 a shift at TGI Friday's.

If you're keeping your employees' tips, you are stealing from them. And if you have servers who would prefer to be paid $7.15 an hour rather than the tips they would receive, then I venture that they are really, really bad servers.

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Response to happyslug (Reply #15)

Wed May 29, 2013, 12:05 PM

36. Why you are wrong.

Dear Happyslug, if you take money your customers intended as a gift to their server for yourself (or management) you are defrauding your customers whether or not you are in compliance with wage and hour rules.

Let's do a little thought experiment. If it was fully disclosed that management pocketed tips, would anyone ever leave a tip again? I wouldn't and I'm sure many others wouldn't as well.

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Response to doxyluv13 (Reply #36)

Wed May 29, 2013, 01:17 PM

39. Bingo.

Well put.

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Response to happyslug (Reply #15)

Wed May 29, 2013, 12:29 PM

37. Why do the servers prefer that?

Is the business so slack that they don't get much in the way of tips?

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Response to happyslug (Reply #15)

Wed May 29, 2013, 01:17 PM

38. This is such bullshit.

I hope you don't run a business. 7.15 is BELOW minimum wage and I have never met a single server who would prefer to make 56 dollars a night (before taxes) over keeping their tips. Even working at shitty chain restaurants I took home at least 100 bucks a night.

They were lying to their customers quit trying to spin it.

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Response to marble falls (Original post)

Tue May 28, 2013, 05:46 PM

2. Anyone that gives work assignments or takes disciplinary action is management and shouldn't

get a share of the tips.

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Response to Skeeter Barnes (Reply #2)

Tue May 28, 2013, 05:52 PM

4. Even though the majority of their job is to serve the customers, thereby generating tips?

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Response to joeglow3 (Reply #4)

Tue May 28, 2013, 05:53 PM

5. Not if they get paid more than the people they supervise. nt

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Response to hack89 (Reply #5)

Tue May 28, 2013, 05:56 PM

6. Why not?

Why not allocate the tips based on a percentage (i.e. a shift supervisor gets 75% credit for every hour work). Sorry, but if a shift supervisor is getting $1 an hour, they would end up making less.


However, THIS is exactly what the 1%'ers want us doing. Fighting over who gets the scraps while our attention is diverted from the real problems.

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Response to joeglow3 (Reply #6)

Tue May 28, 2013, 06:00 PM

8. Shift supervisors should get tips. Asst. managers should not.

Assistant managers should be paid significantly more than the other workers such that they do not need tips.

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Response to hack89 (Reply #8)

Tue May 28, 2013, 07:31 PM

25. Okay we are in agreement

However, the position of the court case is that shift supervisors should NOT get them. I disagree with that.

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Response to joeglow3 (Reply #6)

Tue May 28, 2013, 06:02 PM

9. In many states the wait staff gets paid very little. Not even minimum wage.

The supervisor is making a salary.

So, a waiter makes $3 and hour plus tips...and his manager makes 40K a year and gets half the tips meant for the $3 an hour worker.

They use the tips as a reason to NOT pay even minimum wage....but then they take it for people who are making a salary that is NOT based on the tips. Totally not right.

That's how I see it, anyways.

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Response to DonRedwood (Reply #9)

Tue May 28, 2013, 07:32 PM

26. I am talking the shift supervisor

Typically, they are not making much more than the staff and certainly is not salary. However, the staff is saying even they should not get a cut, even though the lion share of their job is doing the exact same thing as the staff.

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Response to hack89 (Reply #5)

Tue May 28, 2013, 06:42 PM

16. Higher income for Salesmen is quite common then for their supervisiors

Most salesmen want to be paid on Commission, not salary. That way they get a percentage of any sale. In many industries this results in Salesmen earning much more money then their supervisors.

In many industries the skilled people working on projects often get paid higher then their supervisors, simply because the supervisors do NOT have the skills to do the job of the people they are supervising. The technical fields were well known for this (Today, with the emphasis on finance over technical knowledge, this has reversed in to many industries but it is still NOT uncommon for technical people to be "Supervised" by non-technical people. The Supervisors expertise is to make sure the paperwork is completed, including how long each technical person worked, as oppose to knowing what the technical people were doing).

Such situations hinders promotions (higher pay people do NOT want to take a pay cut) but does encourage people to stay on the job longer. Salesmen of industrial goods are the biggest example today, it is not uncommon for such salesmen and women to earn millions of dollars while their supervisor earns way less.

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Response to joeglow3 (Reply #4)

Tue May 28, 2013, 06:07 PM

10. Yes, they are management and don't deserve tips.

If they wanted tips, they could have remained a barista. I wouldn't take a management position that left me so poorly compensated that I needed to steal tip money from the people I was supervising.

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Response to Skeeter Barnes (Reply #10)

Tue May 28, 2013, 06:57 PM

18. How fortunate you must be to have the option of turning down a promotion in that field. (nt)

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Response to Skeeter Barnes (Reply #10)

Tue May 28, 2013, 07:33 PM

27. The vast majority of their job is working in the capacity of a barista

Why should they not get a share of the tips they are directly generating?

I agree the asst. managers should not get any of it.

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Response to Skeeter Barnes (Reply #2)

Tue May 28, 2013, 05:59 PM

7. Letting them in on tips because....


That way the position in question can be paid less without a lot of grief from the person in that position.

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Response to Skeeter Barnes (Reply #2)

Tue May 28, 2013, 06:17 PM

13. Tips are a gratuity offered as thanks for good service.

The tip should be taken by whomever did the serving.

I've had a couple of experiences where I've eaten in restaurants and have been served exclusively by the manager (because they were shorthanded, or busier than expected, or whatever). In every case, I've left them a tip. If the manager is doing the job and is serving the customer directly, and the customer is happy enough with the service to leave a tip for their efforts, then the manager should get those tips. They EARNED them.

There is a difference between a supervisory manager who sits in an office and barks orders, and a working manager who does the same job as the employees and simply has some extra scheduling and supervisory responsibilities. The first has not EARNED any compensation from the customers, and the second has. Starbucks supervisors pretty clearly fall into the second group.

If someone did their job well, and I left them a tip for their efforts, I'd be pretty pissed off if another employee took it simply because the one I left it for had the "wrong" job title.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #13)

Tue May 28, 2013, 06:32 PM

14. If these managers are underpaid, they need to take it up with their fellow members of mgmt.

instead of looking for a cut of entry level employees tips.

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Response to Skeeter Barnes (Reply #14)

Tue May 28, 2013, 06:57 PM

17. Tips are not offered as base compensation.

Negotiating equitable base compensation is part of the employer/employee relationship, and not the customer/business relationship. If the wait staff is underpaid, they should take it up with their management or legislators. If it's bad and they want to strike, I'll respect the line.

Tips are offered by customers as compensation for the work performed FOR the customer. If an hourly waiter does the work, the waiter gets the tip. If the manager does the work, the manager gets the tip. The amount of money each makes per hour, or the relative power levels of their positions, matters very little. When I leave a tip, I leave it as compensation for the person/people serving me. If a manager (or even an owner, in a small establishment) is actively working tables and is serving me as a customer, and I leave a tip for them, then they should get it. They earned it.

To argue otherwise is petty. Tips aren't about social justice or supporting workplace pay parity. Tips are offered as a measure of compensation, and thanks, for those who serve us. To argue that "person X doesn't deserve compensation because of their title" is simply mean spirited and counterproductive to the formation of good workplace relationships. Remember, we're not talking about corporate fatcats here...most restaurant managers only make a few dollars an hour more than the people they're supervising. If they serve me well, and I want to leave them a tip as thanks for doing so, how does that harm anyone?

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Response to Xithras (Reply #17)

Tue May 28, 2013, 07:04 PM

20. Since when are employees in that industry even allowed to negotiate wages?

Especially if they're a chain outlet? You work at one of those, your wage is decreed by head office.

Talking about jobs in the service industry as though they're salaried professional opinions is either startlingly naive or startlingly ignorant, I'm not sure which.

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Response to Posteritatis (Reply #20)

Tue May 28, 2013, 07:10 PM

22. Which isn't really relevant to my core point.

"If a manager (or even an owner, in a small establishment) is actively working tables and is serving me as a customer, and I leave a tip for them, then they should get it. They earned it."

An employees base pay from the employer is not part of the customer/server relationship. Tips are left as compensation for the work performed by the server for the customer, not the work the server is doing for the employer. If the server happens to be a manager, and they are performing direct work for the customer, and the customer chooses to leave them a tip as compensation, then they should receive it.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #17)

Tue May 28, 2013, 07:09 PM

21. They signed on to take action against their fellow workers on behalf of the company.

And they did it knowing that they would still have to perform entry level work and would be underpaid for it. Nobody forced them to do it. They could always ask the regional level supervisors for a raise or go back to being a barista and get tips.

So no, I don't think my position is petty or mean spirited. That would describe management.

You do make excellent points but I don't think we are going to agree on much.

Because of the places I've worked and the way I've been treated on the job, I see management in a different light than you do.

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Response to Skeeter Barnes (Reply #21)

Tue May 28, 2013, 07:38 PM

28. So I, as the customer, have ZERO right to determine who I want to freely give my money to?

That is bull shit. Guess next time, I will tell whoever is serving me to meet me out front and I will "repay" them the money I owe them. I am tiping the person who served me. If the individual is someone willing to get dirty, bust their ass and keep me happy, they are not a "fat cat." They are a working class person just like me and deserve to keep what I freely decide to give them.

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Response to joeglow3 (Reply #28)

Tue May 28, 2013, 07:48 PM

29. Give your money to whoever you want. Nobody stopping you.

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Response to Skeeter Barnes (Reply #29)

Tue May 28, 2013, 08:20 PM

30. YOU are trying to.

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Response to marble falls (Original post)

Tue May 28, 2013, 06:08 PM

11. I work as a part-time Barista and this doesn't bother me

I don't work at 5-bucks but my store does essentially the same thing. Our shift supervisors are also involved with customer service, making drinks, food preparation - essentially everything the baristas do, plus minor managerial stuff.

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Response to marble falls (Original post)

Tue May 28, 2013, 06:13 PM

12. I hope they move to multiple tip jars

labeled for the group of workers who will divide it up (managers, baristas, etc). Let the customers decide.

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Response to lupulin (Reply #12)

Tue May 28, 2013, 07:01 PM

19. I see jars named for the various staff in the places I go to around here

I don't necessarily know who the staff happen to be, but I pick that up if I become a regular someplace.

Voting jars is another thing - a pair with the daily option ("apples or oranges?" sorts of things usually, but I was tickled at "fairy or faerie?" at one last week). I'm not sure how those ones are divided, but there's almost always only two staff on at the places that have them.

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Response to marble falls (Original post)

Tue May 28, 2013, 07:25 PM

24. I am against tips.

Just pay the people a good, living wage and not leave them at the mercy of weather/economy/business cycles etc.

I feel sad when I enter a relatively empty restaurant and a lot of the serving staff hoping that my party would be seated in their serving area.

Employees should not share in the business risks of a restaurant. That is the job of senior management and investors.

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Response to cosmicone (Reply #24)

Tue May 28, 2013, 08:36 PM

31. You don't tip at all, or just a little?

 

What do you do when the check is $50 and the server is good and friendly?

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Response to Ter (Reply #31)

Wed May 29, 2013, 04:57 AM

33. I generally tip 25% under the current system.

More if the server is exceptionally good.

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