PA Governor Vetoes Loosening Restrictions

Fresh on the heels of the decision by US District Court judge William Stickman that Governor Tom Wolf’s limits on indoor and outdoor gatherings, business shutdowns and stay-at-home mandates were unconstitutional, the Pennsylvania legislature passed its own measures relaxing some of the restriction the governor announced for bars and restaurants in the Keystone State. Despite…

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Court Tosses PA Shutdown Mandate

In the first such decision rendered since the coronavirus pandemic first struck the U.S. back in March, a federal court in Pittsburgh ruled early this week that a statewide shutdown and stay-at-home order issued by the governor of Pennsylvania is unconstitutional. U.S. District Court judge William Stickman IV found that despite being well-intentioned, the order…

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Independent Joe #63 August/September 2020

As job requirements go, these are unusual by most standards. Candidates must complete a rigorous six to 18 month-long training program, possess the skill and experience to spread joy wherever they go and, yes, have a wagging tail. That’s just some of what it takes to become a service dog for the Dunkin’ Joy in…

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Independent Joe #62 May/June 2020

What a difference a day makes. Or to update that rhetorical message, what a difference three months makes. Yes, it was just three short months ago when states like Florida, Texas, Arizona and a host of others across the south and southwest were seemingly enjoying some inexplicable level of immunity from the coronavirus pandemic. Businesses…

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What’s Brewing: Jobs Recovery, COVID-19 Regulations, Employee Health, Wage Hikes

It was never easy running a quick-service franchise. But over the past few months, the lives of Dunkin’ franchise owners have gotten infinitely more complicated. Franchisees already had their hands full before the coronavirus crisis hit keeping customers happy, keeping employees satisfied, and keeping bottom lines healthy—all while negotiating the challenges posed by various federal,…

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Focus on Human Resources: Pandemic challenges the efforts to support employees and nourish the business

The restaurant industry – and particularly the Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) industry – is facing many challenges, among them finding and retaining good, reliable employees. It’s no secret that restaurants have an extremely high turnover rate with employees flowing through the revolving door. Data compiled before the coronavirus pandemic, showed employee turnover ran as high…

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Battered by the Pandemic, Franchisees Adapt and Innovate

In late May, with cities and states loosening shelter-in-place restrictions brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, Dunkin’ Brands announced it was ready to examine how to best reopen its seating areas. In a blog post dated May 29, Dunkin’ wrote, “We are now exploring the most judicious ways to once again offer in-restaurant dining,” emphasizing,…

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PPP: Remember to Keep Your Supporting Documentation

The rules related to obtaining a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan and receiving forgiveness of that loan are changing constantly. As a result, it is likely that by the time this article is published in July, the rules and guidance will have changed significantly. With that in mind, rather than attempt to guess what the…

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Court Decisions of Note

Speaking of sexual harassment, the Minnesota Supreme Court early this month upheld the standard of “severe and pervasive” as applies to a threshold determination of sexual harassment claims, but it also whittled away some of the standard’s foundation. The court pronounced the Minnesota Human Rights Act more expansive and protective than federal Title VII protections…

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Covid-19: Navigating the New Normal

In our lifetimes, we haven’t seen anything quite like the coronavirus pandemic. It is a fast-moving phenomenon that makes it hard to predict what will happen in a day, let alone a week or a month. As the nation shifted into a near quarantine in response to the outbreak, Dunkin’ franchise owners changed the way…

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