Weekly Update: Hospitality industry alert! New initiative could ultimately have impact nationwide

Weekly Update: Hospitality industry alert! New initiative could ultimately have impact nationwide https://wahospitality.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/WashingtonRestaurantWeekly_WebsiteBanner-467x198.jpg

A ballot initiative petition has been filed, in Massachusetts, that would require any fast food restaurant or retail store making changes, cancellations, additions or reductions to the schedule of an employee within 14 days of a scheduled shift to pay not less than one additional hour and no more than four additional hours in addition to wages earned for hours worked. This petition has been filed with the state attorney general. The attorney general has until September 2 to certify the petition. If certified, the measure will be filed with the secretary of state. Following certification, proponents of the measure must obtain 64,750 signatures from registered voters by Dec. 2, 2015. If the 64,750 signatures are certified by the secretary of state, the Legislature will have an opportunity to pass the measure by May 2016. If the Legislature does not enact the petition, proponents will be required to obtain an additional 10,792 signatures of registered voters by July 2016 in order for the petition to be on the November 2016 ballot. The WRA is watching the progress of this ballot measure closely. Depending on if it gets certified and how it fares with the Legislature or voters, it may be a harbinger of things to come in the rest of the country.

RSVP today! Candidate meet and greet with Pamela Banks, August 19

You don’t want to miss this event! The Seattle Restaurant Alliance (SRA) is co-hosting a meet and greet and fundraiser for Pamela Banks, Seattle City Council Position 3 candidate, on Wednesday, August 19, 5:30-7 p.m., at the home of Jeremy Eckert, a longtime Seattle resident and hospitality industry friend, at 323 26th Avenue, Seattle. Pamela Banks is endorsed by SRA and is running against incumbent Kshama Sawant. The district Pamela is seeking election in encompasses Capitol Hill, Madrona and Madison Park. To view a map of the district, please click here. At this event, you will have the opportunity to meet, talk with and learn more about Pamela in a casual setting. You will also be able to pick-up campaign materials and hear more about future events and volunteer opportunities. Please feel free to invite friends and colleagues, especially if they live and/or work in District 3. Refreshments and appetizers will be provided. You must RSVP to attend! There is limited space. RSVP to Michael at (206) 682-7328 or michael@bluewavepolitics.com. If you have questions, please contact SRA’s Local Government Affairs Coordinator Morgan Hickel, at morganh@warestaurant.org.

A new response to higher minimum wages: The two-tip option

As the California minimum wage rises, from $8 in June 2014 to $10 in 2016, Magpie, a Sacramento restaurant, is responding in a unique way. While servers, hosts and bussers make minimum wage plus tips, most cooks and other back-of-the-house employees make just above minimum wage, but without tips. According to the California Restaurant Association, this tipping structure is new to Sacramento, and it’s too early to know if the it will spread to other restaurants. Depending on how this works in California, we may see something similar in Washington. In related news, Wendy’s gives its perspective on how an artificially high minimum wage impacts job growth.

Mark your calendars for Golf FORE! Education – A fun way to support the industry, September 22

Golf FORE! Education supports ProStart, the WRA Education Foundation’s culinary arts program that trains our future hospitality work force. ProStart provides high school students with culinary techniques to management skills, utilizes an industry-driven curriculum that is a nationally accredited technical training program, is mentored by industry professionals to provide real life experiences that build practical skills and a foundation that will last a lifetime and gives participants the knowledge and skills needed for today’s demand for skilled employees. Your involvement, support and generous donations have a huge impact on growing and developing the hospitality industry, your communities and the potential of our upcoming workforce! This will be a fun filled day for all at the Washington National Golf Club (14330 SE Husky Way, Auburn) on Tuesday, September 22. Your golf registration will include prizes for 1st, 2nd, 18th and 36th place, contests for closest to the pin, longest drive, lunch, gift bag, range balls, scramble golf and cart. Register now online. Deadline is September 14. For more information on registration and sponsorship opportunities, contact the WRA’s Bernadette Irish.

Couzin’s Cafe and Gyros House on this week’s DineNW radio show – now online

Don’t miss this week’s DineNW radio show, now online. Co-hosts Andy Cook and Paul Schlienz kick off the show by interviewing Greg Waham, owner of Couzin’s Cafe, in Kirkland. Andy and Paul then chat with Moussa El Moussa, owner of Gyros House, in Covington and Renton.

Washington Restaurant Market Watch: Restaurants find new ways to cope with a tight labor market

It’s a tight labor market. “They’re opening restaurants left and right in this city,” Fred Espinoza, chief operating officer at Houston’s Cordúa Restaurants, told the Houston Chronicle. With this kind of growth, employees are much in demand and not always easy to come by. Thus, qualified employees for every restaurant position, be it back-of-the-house or front-of-the-house, are at a premium. Read more…