Broomfield restaurant charging a 10 percent service fee due to increased labor costs

Voters approved Amendment 70 in November

BROOMFIELD, Colo. -- Colorado voters upped the minimum wage in November when they voted yes on Amendment 70, but the increase in wages is now being passed onto consumers at several local restaurants.

Corona's Mexican Restaurant, affected by the change, put up the sign below on their front door to notify customers how they will operate going forward. 

They have also included this note on their menus.

The family-run restaurant has three locations across the metro area, all of which are now charging a ten percent service fee to cover the cost of increased labor.

"Do we want to do that? No, but it was voted for," general manager Lilith Marquez told Denver7.

Marquez said the required increase from Amendment 70 added $8,000 a month to her payroll. Money her struggling family business simply didn't have.

"If we would have run that payroll without doing nothing about it, right now today we would not be open, there's no way, there's no money in the account to support something like that," she said.

"They're getting paid more, but they may not be getting our business as much," said customer Bob Newland.

Marquez did acknowledge the service fee has hurt tips for servers, but said not from all customers -- especially after they learn why they are doing it.

"Here we have so many people say, 'don't rip off the waiter,' right? OK -- but what if there's no restaurant?" she said. "How many people are going to lose their jobs."

Marquez said the restaurant does plan to increase menu prices, which several other restaurants have done. When they do, the ten percent service fee will go away. 

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