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Akron Becomes Latest Ohio City to Propose Capping Third Party Food Delivery Fees

BOTTAR food delivery fees.jpg
Tony Webster
Creative Commons
Restaurants have relied on delivery during the pandemic, and for some, that means paying high fees to third party delivery companies.

The pandemic has forced restaurants to turn to delivery services to stay in business. Many use third-party delivery services such as Grubhub, DoorDash and Uber Eats which charge high fees.

The surcharges restaurants pay to third party delivery companies jumped to 30% for each order during the pandemic. Akron’s Deputy Mayor for Integrated Development James Hardy says the city needs to protect its locally owned restaurants with a 15% cap on these fees for the remainder of the state of emergency.

“We all are to some extent relying on these apps to support local restaurants, and they’re taking advantage of all of us in this process,” Hardy said.

Homa Moheimani is the manager for Media and Communication for the Ohio Restaurant Association. She says similar legislation passed in cities like Cleveland have been extremely effective.

“It’s almost like a sigh of relief, because owners and operators are not making that much off those orders.”

Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan is expected to sign Akron’s new ordinance soon.

Hardy worked closely with the city of Cleveland which passed similar legislation in December. DoorDash later added an extra consumer fee for Cleveland residents.

Hardy says if that happens in Akron, residents should deal directly with local restaurants.

James Hardy

“If DoorDash retaliates against the city of Akron with some sort of consumer fee, what more can we do as consumers to make that extra effort when possible to go for that curbside pickup or that jump in, jump out type of pickup.”

The ordinance would expire when the state of emergencies in Ohio and Akron end.