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Should servers be required to chip into 'tip pools?'
Democratic state e representative says some waiters are subsidizing pay for other staff

Jo Ingles
Nickie Antonio says servers already make little and tip sharing can dig them into a hole.
Courtesy of State of Ohio
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Restaurant servers in Ohio to average about $4 an hour, because it' assumed that the tips they earn will take them up to minimum wage or more.

But some servers say their employers have started putting tips into pools. And Lakewood Democratic State Rep. Nickie Antonio says they're requiring those pools to be shared with people who clean tables, seat people and more.

LISTEN: A small pool to begin with

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“Under this current practice, a percentage of the gross sales from the checks of the restaurant patrons is automatically taken to pay bartenders, hosts and bussers. If a server is not given a tip for their service, they still have to pay automatically out of pocket percentage based on the gross sales of a customer’s bill to another employee, essentially paying to wait on tables some days.

Richard Mason with the Ohio Restaurant Association says his group opposes Antonio’s legislation but hasn’t taken a position on tip pools themselves. Mason does not believe some servers must pay out of their own pockets when customers fail to leave appropriate tips.

Antonio’s legislation would not ban tip pools, but says servers would not be required to participate. She’s a Democrat in a Republican-dominated Statehouse.

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