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Thread: John Metz, Denny's Franchisee And Hurricane Grill & Wings Owner, Imposes Surcharge Fo

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    John Metz, Denny's Franchisee And Hurricane Grill & Wings Owner, Imposes Surcharge Fo

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/1...n_2122412.html



    John Metz, Denny's Franchisee And Hurricane Grill & Wings Owner, Imposes Surcharge For Obamacare

    While some business owners threaten to cut workers' hours to avoid paying for their health care, a West Palm Beach, Fla., restaurant owner is going even further. John Metz said he will add a 5 percent surcharge to customers' bills to offset what he said are the increased costs of Obamacare, along with reducing his employees' hours.

    "If I leave the prices the same, but say on the menu that there is a 5 percent surcharge for Obamacare, customers have two choices. They can either pay it and tip 15 or 20 percent, or if they really feel so inclined, they can reduce the amount of tip they give to the server, who is the primary beneficiary of Obamacare," Metz told The Huffington Post. "Although it may sound terrible that I'm doing this, it's the only alternative. I've got to pass the cost on to the consumer."

    Metz is the franchisor of Hurricane Grill & Wings, which has 48 locations, five of which are corporate owned, and president and owner of RREMC Restaurants, which runs approximately 40 Denny's and several Dairy Queen locations. He planned to use the 5 percent surcharge tactic in all his restaurants starting in January 2014, when Obamacare is fully implemented.

    As the first anti-Obamacare executive to bring up the surcharge option, Metz is "going out on a limb," Paul Fronstin, director of the health research program at the Employee Benefit Research Institute in Washington, told The Huffington Post. Still, surcharges have precedent. Fronstin pointed out that the airline industry charges fliers a 9/11 security fee.

    Still, consumers have many more restaurant options than airline choices, and Fronstin speculated that Metz's move is more about politics than prices. Fronstin said that Metz and business owners, like coal company owner Robert Murray, who are blaming their extreme actions on Obamacare or on President Barack Obama himself may in fact be motivated by their own troubled business finances or political leanings.

    "When you're blaming it on one thing and it's due to something else, you're basically making a political statement," Fronstin said. "And if you do something for political reasons, it can backfire, because someone else has the opportunity to come in and take the business away."

    Metz said he will hold meetings at all his restaurants starting in December to discuss the surcharge and to tell employees "that because of Obamacare, we are going to be cutting front-of-the-house employees to under 30 hours, effective immediately."

    Metz said he hopes the post-election meetings will inspire employees rather than alienate them. "What we're going to ask them to do is to speak to their elected officials, to try to convey what this means in terms of their jobs and their livelihoods," Metz said.

    Metz said he understands the problems that will create not just for his scheduling but for his employees. "I think it's a terrible thing. It's ridiculous that the maximum hours we can give people is 28 hours a week instead of 40," Metz said. "It's going to force my employees to go out and get a second job."

    Despite the one-two hit his employees might take with possibly fewer hours and lower tips, Metz said he is not anti-insurance. His current coverage for full-time employees costs him $5,000 to $6,000 annually, he said. "Obviously, I'd love to cover all our employees under that insurance," he said, "But to pay $5,000 per employee would cost us $175,000 per restaurant, and unfortunately, most of our restaurants don't make $175,000 a year. I can't afford it."

    Currently, the law states that employers with more than 50 full-time equivalent employees will be charged a penalty for any employees over 30 full-time employees that they don't cover. Several employers have cited that provision -- including Darden Restaurants, Papa John's, Apple-Metro and Jimmy John's -- in announcing plans to skirt the law by cutting employees' hours to make them part time.

    Metz said he will take the extra step of adding a surcharge because he believes the law will eventually expand to include penalties for not covering full-time equivalent employees. If he has to pay a penalty for his average 35 full-time equivalent employes per restaurant, he said it would cost him $75,000 per location. In that case, he said raising prices wouldn't be an option, since he'd have to raise prices about 25 percent to cover the costs of Obamacare, which would be "catastrophic" for his business.

    A November Kaiser Health Tracking Poll found that about 43 percent of the population has a favorable opinion of Obamacare, while 39 percent has an unfavorable opinion. "Instead of indirectly charging customers by raising prices, he is directly charging and making a political statement," Fronstin said, "Potentially 43 percent of this person's customers may find the explicit charge a turnoff, and vote with their feet and their money and choose not to eat there."

    Metz said he's risking the backlash to spread a message. "We're trying to get more restaurant operators rallied around the concept of adding a 5 percent surcharge to their bill to cover the costs of Obamacare as opposed to raising prices," he said.

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    No comments on this, Busterbot? Just spamming away as usual?

    He's passing costs on to his customers. Accepted business practice. Who doesn't do this?

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    Quote Originally Posted by quantum View Post
    No comments on this, Busterbot? Just spamming away as usual?

    He's passing costs on to his customers. Accepted business practice. Who doesn't do this?
    Its not fair!!!! You would think the liberals would be spinning this as another benefit of Obamacare since it is kind of an additional 5% health tax on "Grand Slam Breakfasts".

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    Yeah, that damn Obamacare! How dare he expect employers to provide full time employees health insurance. What does he think we are... a modern civilized society?

    How the hell is John Metz supposed to take those trips on his private yacht? I know, lets charge a surcharge, and customers, listen here, if you dont like the surcharge simply take it off the tips. That way my employees not only will not get health insurance but they get less of a tip to add to the minimum wage i provide them with. Its win win. You can continue to eat my unhealthy crappy food and i can still live the lavish lifestyle on the backs of my employees that i just love to screw over.

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    As the saying goes ... it's just business ... but seriously, this guy is such a scumbag.

    In my mind, this scenario brings to light yet another flaw of Obamacare ... the continuation of the employment based healthcare model. Why does access to affordable healthcare have to be based on employment?

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    Quote Originally Posted by kennyo7 View Post
    Yeah, that damn Obamacare! How dare he expect employers to provide full time employees health insurance. What does he think we are... a modern civilized society?

    How the hell is John Metz supposed to take those trips on his private yacht? I know, lets charge a surcharge, and customers, listen here, if you dont like the surcharge simply take it off the tips. That way my employees not only will not get health insurance but they get less of a tip to add to the minimum wage i provide them with. Its win win. You can continue to eat my unhealthy crappy food and i can still live the lavish lifestyle on the backs of my employees that i just love to screw over.
    Why are people Entitled to company provided health insurance? There are many issues with this idea.

    First of all companies started making health insurance a benefit because of government tax policy and to be competitive for the best talent.
    Second, people using "insurance" as a payment plan for regular care, prescriptions and other things caused prices to go up. People that don't have a connection to the cost will not shop for better prices. This totally removes the free market from the equation allowing prices to sky rocket. Now that those policies have backfired and raised rates ridiculously we want to put new mandates in place that will have many other bad unintended consequences.

    Makes a lot of sense.

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    Quote Originally Posted by parafly View Post
    Why does access to affordable healthcare have to be based on employment?
    1. You nailed it. But where was Romney on this?

    2. Worse, this is just another story about the anti-business climate metastisizing in the United States right now. Since Obama was reelected the stock markets are down, layoffs are up.

    3. Things are just going to get worse.


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    I don't care about the politics of this story.

    I just can't believe how someone who's worked his way up into all that he has, is this stupid.

    The guy is costing himself employees and customers. News flash: 'Denny's' and a 'Bar and Grill' aren't exactly unique or special commodities. The substitution effect will be in full swing, and the cost of lost income and employees will be backpassed back to the Metz.

    What a clown.

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    Quote Originally Posted by greenwichjetfan View Post
    I don't care about the politics of this story.

    I just can't believe how someone who's worked his way up into all that he has, is this stupid.

    The guy is costing himself employees and customers. News flash: 'Denny's' and a 'Bar and Grill' aren't exactly unique or special commodities. The substitution effect will be in full swing, and the cost of lost income and employees will be backpassed back to the Metz.

    What a clown.


    Agree. Poor marketing. Very bad PR for his Denny's and the entire chain. I believe he could lose his franchises on this move. He DOES NOT have the right to do as he wishes.
    He could do what Olive Garden and many other restaurants are doing. Make all employees part timers thereby bypassing Obamacare.

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    Quote Originally Posted by parafly View Post
    As the saying goes ... it's just business ... but seriously, this guy is such a scumbag.
    Implies the purpose of his business is to provide healtcare, not provide services at the maximum profit for it's owners and investors.

    It is not the purpose of any business to "provide jobs" or "provide healthcare". The entire purpose of a business is to provide a service or good for profit. If one could operate a business with no employees, they would not be a "scumbag" for doing so.

    The attitude you show here reminds me of the railroad industry, when years after locomotive technology had marched on, trains were required to have firemen on their crews.....firemen being the guys who stoked the fire in a steam locomotive.

    In my mind, this scenario brings to light yet another flaw of Obamacare ... the continuation of the employment based healthcare model. Why does access to affordable healthcare have to be based on employment?
    Ah, see here you get it. I agree, health/life insurance should no more be tied to employment as car insurance or renters/homeowners is.

    With that said, I remain in disagreement over the idea that "affordable healthcare" is a human right that the State must provide for those who are employed/not poor.

    If you prioritize health, you will invest in health insurance first. if you choose not to, it's not our collective burden to pay for your bad choice.

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    Quote Originally Posted by parafly View Post
    Why does access to affordable healthcare have to be based on employment?
    It shouldnt, and thats the problem with Obamacare/Romneycare.
    Access should be provided by the federal government through a taxpayer supported public option. Kinda like what other civilized western nations do. We should look at successful models ala Germany, Norway, Finland to develop our own version of a "public healthcare option"

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    Quote Originally Posted by kennyo7 View Post
    It shouldnt, and thats the problem with Obamacare/Romneycare.
    Access should be provided by the federal government through a taxpayer supported public option. Kinda like what other civilized western nations do. We should look at successful models ala Germany, Norway, Finland to develop our own version of a "public healthcare option"

    Disagree. You want healthcare coverage, buy insurance. You buy the type YOU need to cover YOUR situation and needs.
    If I want PRIME health care coverage, I buy it. If I want bare bones, that's what I buy. If I want none - my call.
    BUT, no insurance = NO TREATMENT unless the provider wants to do it "pro bono". No screwing the system or the people who DO pay.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kennyo7 View Post
    It shouldnt, and thats the problem with Obamacare/Romneycare.
    Access should be provided by the federal government through a taxpayer supported public option. Kinda like what other civilized western nations do. We should look at successful models ala Germany, Norway, Finland to develop our own version of a "public healthcare option"
    Do you have any successful example that are closer to the U.S. in terms of population, ethnic diversity and economic diversity? I ask, because the nations you cite are all somewhat small, somewhat homogenous ethnicly, and enjoy a level of social welfarism well above and beyond what we do here.

    I'd prefer to see a more appropriate example of success that more closely mirros the United States. Do you have one? China? The EU as a whole? Russia perhaps?

    If not, then you're making a very large assumotion that what works one the small scale in a homogenous nationstate of more even wealth distribution will also work equally well is a much larger, much richer/poorer, much MUCH more diverse nationstate, without supplying appropriate evidence of such a claim.

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    Quote Originally Posted by palmetto defender View Post
    Disagree. You want healthcare coverage, buy insurance. You buy the type YOU need to cover YOUR situation and needs.
    If I want PRIME health care coverage, I buy it. If I want bare bones, that's what I buy. If I want none - my call.
    BUT, no insurance = NO TREATMENT unless the provider wants to do it "pro bono". No screwing the system or the people who DO pay.
    Disagree. It is the governments responsibility and in its interest to provide healthcare coverage to its citizens.

    Now, your argument would hold some merit if in fact the uninsured could be denied medical care by the ER. But they cant. One way or the other you are going to pay for the uninsured unless you are willing to deny care.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Warfish View Post
    Do you have any successful example that are closer to the U.S. in terms of population, ethnic diversity and economic diversity? I ask, because the nations you cite are all somewhat small, somewhat homogenous ethnicly, and enjoy a level of social welfarism well above and beyond what we do here.

    I'd prefer to see a more appropriate example of success that more closely mirros the United States. Do you have one? China? The EU as a whole? Russia perhaps?

    If not, then you're making a very large assumotion that what works one the small scale in a homogenous nationstate of more even wealth distribution will also work equally well is a much larger, much richer/poorer, much MUCH more diverse nationstate, without supplying appropriate evidence of such a claim.
    There is no nation as ethnically diverse and large as the USA. But take the EU as a whole if you wish.

    Germany and the UK are ethnically diverse. They both spend less per person on healthcare than the USA and both deliver medical care that based on many measures is equal to or superior to the USA.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kennyo7 View Post
    But take the EU as a whole if you wish.

    Germany and the UK are.....
    Germany and the UK are not the whole EU.

    But I'm glad you were at least able to admit there is no successful example on the scale, and with similar demographics, to the United States.

    So what you propose is the wholesale reorganization of our healthcare system to a Govt. dominated one instead of an individual dominated one, as an experiment.

    I may disagree, but I can respect that position, when stated honestly as above.

    Quote Originally Posted by kennyo7 View Post
    It is the governments responsibility and in its interest to provide healthcare coverage to its citizens.
    In your opinion.

    Our founding legal documents, which lays out the relationship between the poeple and the Government, does not agree (as yet) with that opinion.

    However, might I suggest there is a clear path to change it to your desired position. Amend the Constitution to clearly say that Healthcare is a right and must be provided by the State.
    Last edited by Warfish; 11-16-2012 at 12:59 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kennyo7 View Post
    Disagree. It is the governments responsibility and in its interest to provide healthcare coverage to its citizens.

    Now, your argument would hold some merit if in fact the uninsured could be denied medical care by the ER. But they cant. One way or the other you are going to pay for the uninsured unless you are willing to deny care.

    Well, under Obama(care), it has moved inthat direction. But WHY is it the government's responsibility? Where is the individual in all this?
    Where does the government's responsibily end?
    Laws have been passed which allow hospitals to be abused (in the ER). I believe that hospitals should not have ERs. They are grossly cost inefficient. There should be emergency centers for the treatment of emergencies. The ones that exist provide treatment for 1/3 or less than that of a hospital.
    If a person wants to play Russian Roulette with their health by not having insurance. Tough.
    Same as not having adequate home insurance and getting whacked by a hurricane or tornado or flood. Your call. Tough luck.
    People must pay for the basics first. The 60" TV or trip to Disney come LAST.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Warfish View Post
    Implies the purpose of his business is to provide healtcare, not provide services at the maximum profit for it's owners and investors.

    It is not the purpose of any business to "provide jobs" or "provide healthcare". The entire purpose of a business is to provide a service or good for profit. If one could operate a business with no employees, they would not be a "scumbag" for doing so.

    The attitude you show here reminds me of the railroad industry, when years after locomotive technology had marched on, trains were required to have firemen on their crews.....firemen being the guys who stoked the fire in a steam locomotive.
    The first comment was not directed at healthcare, but the way this owner is handling the situation. If he needs to increase costs to cover Obamacare, go ahead and increase costs. Don't pull this 5% surcharge on top of "regular prices" explicitly citing Obamacare, and if the customer wants to make up the costs just take it out of your server's tip. Talk about undercutting and unnecessary. Like I said, scumbag.

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    Lotsa laughs from the usual pukes in this one

    I live a mile from a Hurricane Grill, never went, now I'll be sure to stop in for breakfast lunch dinner and late night snacks.

    Foreign Healthcare is far inferior to US -the waits, the treatment, the outcomes all suck despite the lies the ghoulish pro-death panel Dr. Skatapita tells us. Any "efficiencies" such as reduced R&D costs are realized due to research taking place in the USA. Dr. compensation blows abroad, if US drs income diminish to those levels get ready for more shoeless interns speaking broken English.

    Until recent times, the country that has the most of everything, wealth and resource wise has traditionally guaranteed the least of everything to its citizens. Even most legal immigrants understand why that is but our domestic bumper crop of fruits nuts and flakes aka libs want our country to suck as badly as any 3rd world sh1tehole. "Tanstaafl"-they don't get it and never will.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Warfish View Post

    So what you propose is the wholesale reorganization of our healthcare system to a Govt. dominated one instead of an individual dominated one, as an experiment.
    .
    No thats not what I propose.
    I propose that there is a tax payer funded public insurance option that will provide basic medical coverage for all of its citizens. Coverage will be for what the medical community determines makes medical sense. (ie- we wont start dialysis on a 88 year old demented person with an incurable advanced cancer). Private insurances will also be available for purchase if one choses.

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