The New York City Council has passed a bill, which allows restaurants to add a COVID-19 surcharge of up to 10 per cent on food bills. The government has taken the decision to financially support the restaurants that suffered and are still suffering to remain open during this tough time.

Joseph Borelli, councilmember and bill sponsor said, “This bill will give restaurants the freedom they need to increase revenue to help cover rapidly rising labor and compliance costs and keep them in business.”

A recovery measure means that restaurants will be able to charge up to an additional 10 per cent on diners’ bills. However, the latest bill still needs Mayor Bill de Blasio’s signature to go into effect. The Mayor is in complete support of this recovery measure.

Borelli further said that they need those businesses to stay in business and if they don’t run, hundreds of thousands of people will be jobless.

The owners of the restaurant will have to specify to customers that the additional charge does not count as a tip or doesn’t go to the staff either. However, food trucks or most chain restaurants won’t be able to apply the new COVID-19 Recovery Charge.

Though the bill has been supported by a number of eminent personalities from the New York restaurant world, it has also raised concerns about the well-being of the restaurant staff. According to experts, because of the new surcharge customers might tip very less, which is certainly a negative point for hotel workers.

The extra surcharge idea is not new. Before New York, restaurants in San Francisco also opted for the same measure for fighting climate change and charged 1 per cent extra on the bills.

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