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Trump Administration Proposes Change To Restaurant Tip Sharing Rules

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The Trump administration today continues it's efforts to role back Obama era regulations. This time it has to do with how restaurant employees share their tips.

People who work in the restaurant business generally rely on tips to pay their bills. And those tips typically go to employees in the front of the restaurant. Now the Trump administration wants employees in the kitchen to receive a portion of those tips and that's not sitting well with person taking your order.

As a tipped employee in California, Steven Avalos, a server at Guillermos Restaurant in Palm Desert, makes the California minimum wage of $10.50 per hour in addition to his tips. But in some states, employers are only required to pay their tipped employees that which is required under the Fair Labor Standards Act ($2.13). The tips they make are used to supplement their hourly wages and bring their total to the federal minimum of $7.25 per hour. 

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"The importance of tips in my line of work is basically how I live my life and save money throughout the year," said Steven Avalos, a server at Guillermos Restaurant in Palm Desert.

At most restaurants, servers are required to tip out their busser, bartender, food runner, and hostess. Leaving the server with whatever is left over. The Trump administration wants to take things a step further and make sure the cooks, food preps and dishwashers get a piece of the pie. But those who work in customer service say the physical labor isn't the hard part.

"What's hard is hospitality. Putting up with certain type of people," said Avalos.

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Something the kitchen employees don't have to do. If the proposal passes, Avalos will be forced to make a life change.

"I think I'll have to start looking for a morning job, a consistent morning job and then work this as my night job," said Avalos.

Those who work in the kitchen are celebrating the proposal. But they have doubts about receiving less than the minimum wage like their server and busser co-workers. The labor department will take the next thirty days to hear from restaurant employees about the proposed change.

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