House Passes ‘drive-by lawsuit’ Fix

The US House of Representatives yesterday passed HR 620, which requires that business owners be given details about alleged ADA violations and a time to cure the default before a lawsuit can be initiated. The ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017, which has long been a priority of the Coalition of Franchisee Associations (CFA),…

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Committee Postpones Ring Confirmation

Although it was scheduled to take place Wednesday, the Health Education Labor & Pensions Committee (HELP) confirmation hearing for NLRB nominee John Ring was postponed until March 1 at the request of Ranking Member Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.). Murray apparently requested the delay because of democratic concerns about alleged conflicts of interest with another National…

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House Democrats Target Tip Pooling Rule

The recent efforts of the Department of Labor to rescind an Obama-era restriction on tip pools were targeted yesterday by House democrats. A roundtable held in DC focused on generating opposition to the DOL proposed rule allowing tip pooling. Democratic members of the Committee on Education and the Workforce among others joined representatives from the…

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Sick Leave -No Delay in MD, No Changes in DC

It turns out that the Maryland House of Delegates would not follow the state senate and delay the implementation of the paid sick leave law in Maryland, letting it take effect as scheduled last Sunday. After serious lobbying by the business community, the senate had agreed to postpone the mandate until July in order to…

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Northeast Regional Member Meeting

The annual Northeast Regional Meeting will be held on Tuesday, March 13, 2018 at the Sheraton Needham Hotel in Needham Massachusetts. You will not want to miss this meeting and the presentations we have scheduled on 2 of the more timely topics of today: Keeping Your Business Free of Sexual Harassment; and the Tax Cuts…

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MUFC Conference

We’ve noted that the popular Multi-Unit Franchising Conference (MUFC) is set to take place in Las Vegas on April 3 – 6, 2018. Registration is now available with the “Early Rate” fee for franchisees of $795 expiring on March 16, 2018. After that date, the franchisee registration fee increases to $895. However, as DDIFO is…

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Competitor News

Tim Horton’s has run into slower new unit development in both Canada and the US (particularly) than planned per the RBI Earnings Call held this past Monday. Tim’s doesn’t report US same store sales anymore, but it can be seen from the Q4 results that the US comps were negative. They noted they were rolling…

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Miscellaneous

We note the NPD Group 2017 restaurant census was released this week and it reported that the number of US restaurants fell another 2 percent from a year ago, down to 647,288 units. The unit count for independent restaurants dropped 3 percent, while the count for chains grew by less than 1,000. Fast casual restaurants…

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Tipping Over the Tip Pool

It’s been in the news steadily over several weeks, but the Trump administration plan to revisit and likely rescind the tip pool restrictions implemented by the Obama Department of Labor (DOL) took a significant hit last week. It is now alleged that Labor Secretary Alex Acosta buried some research on the question that reflected poorly…

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USPS Postal Rate Hike in Effect

The US Postal Service confirmed postal rates increased effective Sunday, January 21, 2018. In most instances postage rates will increase by 2-6% depending on the type of mail or package. First-Class Package Service increased 3.9 percent, with rates increasing the most for packages weighing 13 ounces or more, while Priority Mail increased by 6.2%. Priority…

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