View Full Version : Legalize Tip Stealing

Ian McColgin
03-21-2018, 06:20 PM
Published on Wednesday, March 21, 2018, by Common Dreams

'Energetically Corrupt' Mulvaney Gave Green Light to Delete Data on Trump's Tip-Stealing Rule
"This is a transparency concern, a legal concern, and I think it's got to be a concern for the legitimacy and the integrity of the deregulatory agenda writ large."

by Jake Johnson, staff writer

Further revealing how far the Trump administration is willing to go to "actively make workers' lives worse," Bloomberg Law reported on Wednesday that White House budget chief Mick Mulvaney personally approved the Labor Department's decision to delete an internal analysis showing that its proposed "tip-sharing rule" would allow companies to steal hundreds of millions of dollars from their employees per year.

"This is a transparency concern, a legal concern, and I think it's got to be a concern for the legitimacy and the integrity of the deregulatory agenda writ large," Amit Narang, a regulatory policy advocate at Public Citizen, argued in response to the revelation. "It's pretty apparent that in this case and potentially others, the administration [is] willing to manipulate the cost-benefit numbers to make them look good for their attempts to roll back regulatory protections."

By green-lighting the removal of crucial data from the department's final rule—which worker advocacy groups have termed the "tip-stealing" proposal—Mulvaney overrode the objections of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), which argued that the unfavorable findings must be included.

Citing sources familiar with the process, Bloomberg Law reports how Secretary of Labor Alex Acosta, in order to subvert the regulatory office's demand, "elevated the dispute to Mulvaney, who as Office of Management and Budget (OMB) director oversees OIRA."

Mulvaney ultimately sided with Acosta, and the Labor Department scrubbed its internal analysis from the final proposal.

"The story about how Secretary Acosta pushed out the tip stealing rule while hiding the cost from the public keeps getting uglier," Sharon Block, executive director of the Labor and Worklife Program at Harvard Law School, wrote in response to Bloomberg Law's reporting. "Having to go so far up the chain to get the okay to flout the rules shows that Acosta knew that they were trying to get away with something."

Other commentators reacted on social media to the news of Mulvaney's personal involvement in the suppression of data, arguing that it "underscores how deep the rot of corruption and bad faith is in this administration."

According to an analysis published by the Economic Policy Institite (EPI) in January, even the internal analysis that the Department of Labor successfully repressed downplayed how much the tip-stealing rule would harm workers.

While the Labor Department ultimately concluded that the rule could cost workers $640 million per year in earned tips, EPI found that the actual number would be somewhere around $5.8 billion—with $4.6 billion of that coming from the pockets of women.

In a statement on Wednesday, Heidi Shierholz, director of policy at EPI, argued that Acosta should withdraw the rule and "focus on things that promote the Labor Department's mission of serving working people, not undermining their earnings."

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03-21-2018, 06:54 PM
No wonder you have corruption problems, the actual business of tipping instead of a liveable wage is an employer subsidy and corrupt by definition.

Ian McColgin
03-21-2018, 07:04 PM
Right. Trump worked for tips. If you say so.

03-21-2018, 08:15 PM
I can't understand why this is a government issue. Perhaps if the owner took the tips it could be called theft when the intention was to tip for service, but this seems like the government overreaching.

03-21-2018, 11:24 PM
If I am tipping for service, and occasionally I do having been on the other side of that, I'm sure not tipping the business owner unless he also happens to be the service provider. Sole traders, cafe's etc. OTOH kitchen staff do have, in my opinion, an entitlement to a share of the pool.

Art Haberland
03-21-2018, 11:33 PM
Kitchen Staff should have part of the pool unless their pay is high enough not to need it. In many cases the servers are paid the minimum (which is a LOT lower than the minimum wage) with the expectation that they will make up for it with tips.

03-22-2018, 04:19 AM
And if that's not a business subsidy and outright theft all at once I don't know what is.

03-22-2018, 06:58 AM
In South Carolina, minimum tip wages is " $2.13" per hour, supposed to be augmented by a $5.12 per hour employer match to make a $7.25 total minimum wage. Waitstaffing is a tough job any way you cut it.

David W Pratt
03-22-2018, 08:09 AM
What do buss boys and kitchen staff get paid?

03-22-2018, 09:08 AM
What do buss boys and kitchen staff get paid?

Buspersons ordinarily split tips with waitstaff and receive a small hourly wage. Kitchen staff earn hourly wages or a salary.