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Wed Nov 21, 2012, 01:36 AM

John Metz Denny's Obamacare Surcharge Stirs Big Mess For Restaurant Chain [View all]

Source: Huffington Post

Don't expect to hear more about an Obamacare surcharge from Denny's franchisee John Metz.

Denny's chief executive John Miller privately reached out to Metz to express his "disappointment" with the Florida franchisee's controversial statements about Obamacare, which sparked a wave of backlash for the national restaurant chain over the past few days. Metz released a statement Monday night expressing "regret" over his statements.

"We recognize his right to speak on issues, but registered our disappointment that his comments have been interpreted as the company’s position," Miller said in an email to The Huffington Post.

Miller is rushing to put out the fire sparked by Metz's controversial proposal to charge restaurant customers a 5 percent Obamacare fee. "Customers have two choices: They can either pay it and tip 15 or 20 percent, or if they really feel so inclined, they can reduce the amount of tip they give to the server," Metz told HuffPost in an interview last week.

Some Denny's franchisees have since dealt with angry customers, calls for a boycott and declining sales. A spokeswoman for Metz said he will not conduct more interviews.Metz, whose RREMC Restaurants owns more than 30 Denny's locations, said in a statement, "We regret that the statements we made may have been interpreted as representative of the Denny’s brand or of other franchisees, which they are not. Our stores do not have a 5 percent surcharge. Despite recent media coverage, RREMC Restaurants is committed to exploring viable and effective ways to deal with the changing economic climate, including the implementation of The Affordable Care Act. We have always been and will continue to be 100 percent dedicated to our employees and customers and will work tirelessly to find solutions that are in their best interests. It is our intention is to fully comply with the law."

After Metz's original comments went viral, Abdo Mouannes said sales and traffic dropped "overnight" at his seven Denny's locations in Florida. Angry callers immediately jammed the phones at his restaurants. "The manager said it was so frustrating, she wanted to unplug the phone," Mouannes told HuffPost. "People didn't like what they heard and were saying they wouldn't support Denny's, but we have nothing to do with that decision. I am not a fan of the idea. We are opposing the 5 percent -- it's not even a consideration for us."

Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/20/john-metz-dennys-obamacare-surcharge-_n_2146735.html

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Reply John Metz Denny's Obamacare Surcharge Stirs Big Mess For Restaurant Chain [View all]
octoberlib Nov 2012 OP
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