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Join us in the Steel City March 10-11 prla.org/springmeeting


PRLA 2013 Officers CHAIRMAN Matt English Milestone Hospitality Management LLC, Lancaster Central and Lancaster chapters VICE CHAIRMAN Mike Rodden Philadelphia Marriott West, West Conshohoken Philadelphia Delaware Valley Chapter

Annual Meeting & Awards Gala

VICE CHAIRMAN Rick Sell Bahama Breeze, Exton Philadelphia Delaware Valley Chapter TREASURER Jeff Cohen Smallman Street Deli, Pittsburgh Western Chapter IMMEDIATE PAST CHAIRMAN Jeff Metz Metz Culinary Management, Dallas Northeastern Chapter



PRLA STAFF PRESIDENT & CEO Patrick Conway | pconway@prla.org


EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT Vicki Zeppa | vzeppa@prla.org VICE PRESIDENT OF OPERATIONS John Doulgeris | jdoulgeris@prla.org DIRECTOR OF MEMBER SERVICES Amy Kieffer | akieffer@prla.org

Congratulations to all winners!

MEMBER RELATIONS COORDINATORS Christine Preuss | cpreuss@prla.org Eric Adams | eadams@prla.org MEMBERSHIP SALES REPRESENTATIVES Rich Zlogar, Central PA Karin Kady, Eastern PA Charlie Anderson, Northwestern PA DIRECTOR OF FINANCE & HUMAN RESOURCES Diane Sherwood | dsherwood@prla.org GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS REPRESENTATIVE Melissa Bova | mbova@prla.org EDUCATION COORDINATOR Hope Sterner | hsterner@prla.org MEETING & EVENT PLANNER Heidi Howard | hhoward@prla.org COMMUNICATIONS COORDINATOR Stephanie Otterson | sotterson@prla.org FINANCE ASSISTANT Paula Judd | pjudd@prla.org

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in Food Safety Awards


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ServSafe Schedule


Legislative Corner


Legislator Spotlight


Food Safety


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Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Matters is a publication of the PENNSYLVANIA RESTAURANT & LODGING ASSOCIATION 100 State Street, Harrisburg, PA 800-345-5353 www.prla.org info@prla.org

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Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Matters is published quarterly by the Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association, 100 State Street, Harrisburg, PA 17101, tel 800-345-5353, and is a benefit of membership in the association. Articles do not necessarily reflect the view or position of the Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association. Editorial coverage or permission to advertise does not constitute endorsement of the company covered or of an advertiser’s products or services, nor does Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Matters make any claims or guarantees as to the accuracy or validity of the advertiser’s offer.

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“ 2013 promises to be an exciting year for both

the organization and the industry.”

Matt English

FIRST, and foremost, we would like to thank Jeff Metz, Metz Culinary Management, for his dedicated service as the association’s chairman of the board. His leadership helped guide our association’s transition to the Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association. 2013 promises to be an exciting year for both the organization and the industry. The National Restaurant Association recently released its annual “What’s Hot” report. NRA surveyed more than 1,000 American Culinary Federation chefs and nearly 200 professional bartenders to identify the new year’s biggest food and beverage trends. For the complete survey results, visit restaurant.org/foodtrends. PRLA is in the process of hiring two regional membership directors, one for the Philadelphia area and one for the Pittsburgh area. These 4 •


positions will grow and support membership in their respective regions, while collaborating with our great staff team in the Harrisburg office. The Pennsylvania Legislature kicks off a new, two-year session this month. The Legislative Corner on page 8 discusses Gov. Corbett’s priority issues, the make-up of the new Legislature and issues we are currently tracking. With President Obama’s re-election in November, implementation of the Affordable Care Act continues to move forward. Check PRLA’s weekly Legislative Update for the latest information on regulations or changes that are made to the act. If you are not currently receiving the Legislative Update but wish you did, simply email mbova@prla.org with “LU Subscribe” in the subject line. Mark your calendars for the Spring Membership Meeting, which •


Patrick Conway

will be held on March 10-11, 2013, at the Renaissance Hotel in Pittsburgh. PRLA committee meetings are open to all members, and we encourage you to attend and engage in your association. Look for you formal invitation later this month. Finally, we wish you—our members—a prosperous New Year. Thank you for your continued membership and support. We look forward to serving you in 2013. With best regards,

Matt English Chairman of the Board

Patrick Conway President & CEO

Meet the Officers 2013 OFFICERS

Matt English

Mike Rodden

Rick Sell

Jeff Cohen


Vice Chairman

Vice Chairman


Milestone Hospitality Management, Lancaster

Philadelphia Marriott West Hotel, West Conshohocken

Bahama Breeze Exton

Smallman Street Deli/Weiss Provisions, Pittsburgh

In 1999, Matt English joined Milestone Hotel Management as the director of food and beverage at the Holiday Inn Harrisburg-Hershey. Prior to joining Milestone Hotel Management, he served in various managerial positions at the Holiday Inn Harrisburg-Hershey.

Mike Rodden joined Marriott Hotels shortly after graduating from Michigan State University with his business degree. During his 31-year-tenure with Marriott, Mike has worked in hotels across the country and spent seven years at the company’s headquarters in Bethesda, Maryland.

Matt is a member of the AH&LA Food and Beverage Committee and Intercontinental Hotel Group Food and Beverage Council. He is certified in Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point, and as a AH&LA Food and Beverage Executive and Rooms Division Executive.

He currently is the general manager of the Philadelphia Marriott West Hotel, a position he has held for the last eight years. Prior to his move to West Conshohocken, Mike was the general manager of the Research Triangle Park Marriott in Durham, N.C.

Rick Sell joined Darden Restaurants in 1999 as the service manager of the opening team for the first Atlanta location of the new Bahama Breeze growth concept. He quickly rose to general manager and in 2004 was included in the elite Darden Diamond Club, which recognizes the top five percent of all Darden general managers.

With famous sandwiches made of beef that is corned right next door at Weiss Provisions, Smallman Street Deli owner Jeff Cohen has made his deli a destination in the Strip District and beyond. Jeff spent 17 years in the shoe business before purchasing Weiss Provision Company in 1995.

In 1993, Matt graduated with honors from the Pennsylvania State University in hotel, restaurant and institutional management. He also obtained his Advanced Operational Analysis certification through Cornell University’s professional development program. 6 •

In addition to serving as a member of various tourism boards, he chaired the Montgomery County Intermediate Unit Education Foundation.



Rick relocated in 2004 to Philadelphia to take over as Bahama Breeze’s northeast director of operations. In this position, Rick supports seven restaurants in four states that exceed $40 million in annual sales, as well as 35 managers and 750 hourly team members. Darden honored him in 2009 with its Director of Operations of the Year award.

Jeff is an active advocate for the local restaurant industry, tackling issues such as the County Health Department’s proposal for posting restaurant grades, the County Council’s drink tax and City Council’s proposal to extend metered parking hours. He has served on the Western Chapter board of directors since 1996 and was chapter president for two years. He also serves on the Visit Pittsburgh board of directors.


ServSafe® Certification Class Schedule presented by UnitedHealthcare

January–June 2013

The Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association’s one-day and online courses are approved for Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture certification. All course materials will be shipped via UPS two weeks prior to the course date, unless otherwise specified. A $60 transfer fee will be assessed if you cancel less than 2 weeks prior to the course date. ONE DAY COURSE WITH CLASSROOM INSTRUCTION AND PROCTORED EXAM $140 M / $180 NM Recommended for most registrants and includes textbook and answer sheet. Participants study at home and in the classroom. HOME STUDY WITH A PROCTORED EXAM IN THE CLASSROOM $115 M / $140 NM Recommended for the experienced foodservice professional since no classroom instruction is provided. Participants study at home and then attend a proctored exam. ONLINE COURSE WITH PROCTORED EXAM IN THE CLASSROOM $150 M / $190 NM Recommended for the experienced foodservice professional since no textbook or classroom instruction is provided. Online course takes about 8-10 hours to complete and requires a high-speed internet connection. RETESTING This option is provided for those who must simply re-take the ServSafe exam.


2013 ServSafe® Schedule with Locations JANUARY 1/14 Lancaster, Bird-in-Hand Family Restaurant 1/14 Philadelphia, Hyatt Regency 1/28 Harrisburg, Central Penn College 1/28 Monroeville, Courtyard Marriott FEBRUARY 2/4 Butler, Fairfield Inn 2/4 Wilkes-Barre, Ramada Inn 2/11 Reading, The Peanut Bar 2/11 State College, Hotel State College 2/25 Greensburg, Courtyard Marriott 2/25 Philadelphia, Hyatt Regency 2/25 York, York Co. School of Tech. REGISTER ONLINE OR CALL prla.org/servsafe • (800) 345-5353

MARCH 3/11 Allentown, TBD 3/11 Lancaster, Bird-in-Hand Family Restaurant 3/11 Washington, Angelo’s Restaurant 3/18 DuBois, TBD 3/25 Lebanon, TBD 3/25 Wilkes-Barre, Ramada Inn

MAY 5/6 Greensburg, Courtyard Marriott 5/6 State College, Hotel State College 5/13 Carlisle, Carlisle Area High School 5/13 Philadelphia, Hampton Inn 5/20 Lancaster, Bird-in-Hand Family Restaurant

APRIL 4/8 Monroeville, Courtyard Marriott 4/8 Philadelphia, Hampton Inn 4/15 Erie, Sunset Inn 4/15 Harrisburg, Central Penn College 4/15 Indiana, Dingbats 4/22 Reading, The Peanut Bar 4/29 Butler, Fairfield Inn 4/29 Tannersville, TBD 4/29 York, York Co. School of Tech.

JUNE 6/3 Wilkes-Barre, Ramada Inn 6/10 Bethlehem, Northampton Community College 6/10 Monroeville, Courtyard Marriott 6/17 Harrisburg, Central Penn College 6/24 Altoona, TBD 6/24 Philadelphia, Hampton Inn

100 State Street I Harrisburg, PA 17101 I 800.345.5353 I 717.236.1202 FAX I www.prla.org

LEGISLATIVE CORNER Department of Labor investigations As businesses that rely on tipped employees, restaurants and hotels are always under scrutiny by Department of Labor auditors. Please ensure that you are following all federal and state regulations relating to tipped employees, scheduling of minors and employee uniforms. Philadelphia mandatory paid sick leave Councilman Greenlee has pledged to re-introduce paid sick leave legislation in 2013. The legislation would require all businesses with more than five employees to provide paid sick leave—up to 56 hours per year. Employees are not required to give advanced notice if they take a sick day. In addition, the burden is on the employer to calculate and maintain records of all paid sick leave. The Philadelphia Chapter will continue to push for defeat of this measure.

2013–14 Legislative session priorities A new legislative session began in January, which means all bills that were not signed by the Governor in 2012 must start from the beginning of the legislative process in 2013. Once again, legislators will have two years (or more realistically, 1.5 years) to pass legislation. Gov. Corbett has stated that transportation funding, pension reform and privatization of the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board will be his legislative priorities in 2013. 2013–14 House make-up While the House Republicans managed to keep a healthy majority (111-92). Twenty-nine new members (10 Republican and 19 Democrat) began terms in the new session, which is the largest new-member class since 2006. 2013–14 Senate make-up Senate Republicans also returned to Harrisburg with a majority, but not with the comfortable spread they once enjoyed. Senate Democrats picked up three seats, which reduced the Republican majority from 30–20 to 27–23. A much more moderate Senate is expected in the new session since moderate Republican support will be needed to pass key bills.

Affordable Care Act This year will be key for businesses subject to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The number of hours your employees work in 2013 determines your responsibility to offer healthcare coverage in 2014. If you have 50 or more full-time equivalent employees, you are required to offer healthcare to those that work on average 30 hours or more per week. While changes are expected to be made to the Act in the first six months of 2013, the basic premise, healthcare coverage for all full-time employees, will not change. Please read PRLA’s weekly Legislative Update email for information of regulations and any changes that are made to the Act.

The Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association is committed to representing the hospitality industry at all levels of government on legislative and regulatory issues that have a direct impact on our industry and our members’ bottom lines. The above issues are just a few of the priorities in which your association is currently engaged.

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legislator spotlight

Representative Tom Killion

REP. TOM KILLION uses his wealth of experience from county and state government, as well as his knowledge in the private sector, to represent the people of the 168th Legislative District in Delaware and Chester counties. Killion began his service in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives on June 30, 2003, when he was sworn in to fill the seat of former Speaker of the House Matthew Ryan. As a legislator, he serves as Deputy Whip and is a member of the Appropriations, Insurance, Liquor Control, Human Services and Rules committees. Before his election, Killion founded InR Advisors Inc., a pension advisories firm, and remains a partner with the firm. He is the former chairman of the Delaware County Council where he served from 1992 through 2000, and served as U.S. Rep. Curt Weldon’s campaign chairman from 1990 to 2003. His work in government began more than 20 years ago when he worked as a fraud investigator for the state treasurer. He is a graduate of Cardinal O’Hara High School and Penn State University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice. Killion has served on numerous boards including: the Rocky Run YMCA, the Penn State Brandywine Advisory Board, the Elwyn Board of Directors, SEPTA, the Delaware County Domestic Abuse Project and the Delaware County Convention and Visitors Bureau. In Harrisburg, as a member of the Appropriation Committee, Killion is working on state budget issues. He is also working on creating a more business friendly environment so we can compete in the global economy and put Pennsylvanians back to work. Killion is also working in the Insurance Committee to keep doctors in Pennsylvania. Killion received Penn State Brandywine’s 2010 Outstanding Alumni Award and the 2010 SPCA Animal Welfare Leadership Award. He previously received the American Red Cross’s David Henderson Humanitarian Award and has twice received the Delaware County Chamber of Commerce’s Legislator of the Year Award. The 168th District includes Media and Rose Valley boroughs as well as Edgmont, Middletown and Thornbury Townships, parts of Newtown, Upper Providence and Nether Providence townships, and Westtown Township in Chester County. Killion lives in Middletown with his wife, Eileen and his daughters, Brittany and Rebecca.


Annual Meeting & Awards Gala

The Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association (PRLA) hosted its 75th Annual Fall Membership Meeting and Awards Gala at the Hilton Harrisburg on Sunday, November 4 and Monday, November 5. Sunday and Monday’s committee and board meetings set the direction of the association for the coming year.


Sunday evening’s Awards Gala recognized PRLA’s 2012 officers and honored several exceptional industry leaders for their safety, service, civic engagement, dedication and leadership.

Congratulations! Sara Letzo, Jeffrey Rudder, Calvin Olson from Omni Bedford Springs accept the 2012 Wilmer S. Lapp Keystone Award

Gavin Mutter accepts the 2012 Allied Member of the Year Award on behalf of Kunzler & Company

Lane McFarland of Beechie’s Place accepts the 2012 Restaurant Member of the Year

Daniel Johnson of the Holiday Inn Conference Center, York, accepts the 2012 Lodging Member of the Year WINTER 2013


Membership Awards

Membership growth relies heavily on peer outreach and support. The Membership Awards recognizes the individuals and chapters that have helped the association grow over the last year. The Chapter Growth Awards are broken into two categories: Metro and Core and awarded for the largest percentage of new member growth over the year. The 2012 Chapter Growth Award— Metro Category was awarded to the Central Chapter, while the Lancaster Chapter won the Core Category award. The Chapter Board Member Lead Contest is a competition between the chapter boards and the winning board generates the most membership sales per board member. The 10-person Northwestern Chapter board brought in eight new members. Membership Challenge winners (l to r): John Barsotti, Heidi Howard, Jeff Cohen, Steve Musciano and John Graf The chapter will receive a check for 10 percent of the membership dues At the 2012 Spring Meeting, PRLA seven months, the team of collected from these new member staff teamed up with members Vince Sanzotti, Jeff Cohen, Steve sales, which will be given to the from around the state for the Musciano, Tony Ferraro and PRLA charity of the board’s choice. Membership Challenge. Over staffer Heidi Howard brought in 12 • PENNSYLVANIA RESTAURANT & LODGING matters • WINTER 2013

11 new members. The team will receive a check for 10 percent of the membership dues collected from these new member sales, which will be presented to a charity of the team’s choice. PRLA recognized the Recruiter of the Year—the individual member who brought in the most new members during the year. Jeff Cohen of Smallman Street Deli/ Weiss Provisions in Pittsburgh brought in seven new members, and the charity of his choice will receive a check for 10 percent of these new member sales. Board Member Lead Contest (l to r): Mike Barrett, Charlie Anderson, Bertrand Artigues and Tom Youngblood accept the award on behalf of the Northwestern Chapter

Chapter President Tony Salomone accepts the Chapter Growth Award— Metro Category on behalf of the Central Chapter

Recruiter of the Year Jeff Cohen

Timothy Harris accepts the Chapter Growth Award—Core Category on behalf of the Lancaster Chapter





in Food Safety Awards Now in its 10th year, the Excellence in Food Safety Awards program recognizes members who exceed the standards of excellence in food safety and sanitation. PRLA congratulates the following 2012 award recipients!

clockwise from above

Appalachian Brewing Company | Harrisburg Gettysburg College Dining Services | Gettysburg Hilton Harrisburg | Harrisburg


clockwise from top left

Great Wolf Lodge | Scotrun Isaac’s Famous Grilled Sandwiches | Wyomissing Lynn Dairy Queens Inc. | Uniontown PA School of Culinary Arts | Lancaster Red Robin—Hamburg | Hamburg not shown

Starters Riverport | Bethlehem

Congratulations! WINTER 2013


Thank You

to our Gala Sponsors and Purveyors Diamond Sponsors Heartland Payment Systems UnitedHealthcare

Gold Sponsors BMI Eills Coffee Company SorinRand

Silver Sponsors Auntie Anne’s Shumaker Williams Inc. The Graham Company

Bronze Sponsors Gordon Food Services Pheasant Field Bed & Breakfast

Friends of PRLA Heinz Foodservice Fishbowl PA Preferred Distilled Spirits Council of the United States

Purveyors Capital Wine & Spirits Southern Wine & Spirits

IT PAYS TO BELONG Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association members have exclusive access to special discount programs. If you aren’t already a member, join Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association today by calling 800-345-5353 to take advantage of these great offers: Heartland Payment Systems Credit Card and Payroll Processing UnitedHealthcare Health Insurance Programs Prime Source Purchasing Manufacturer Rebate Program Fishbowl Email Marketing Solutions BMI Music Licensing National Restaurant Association Operator Resources American Hotel & Lodging Association Operator Resources RestaurantOwner.com Operator Resources Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association 100 State Street, Harrisburg, PA 17101 800-345-5353 • www.prla.org

FICA Tip Credit

A tool to ease your payroll pain by Julie Kullman, CPA Brown Schultz Sheridan & Fritz

Under the current Internal Revenue Code, employees who receive $20 or more in tips in a single month must report tips to their employers. If you have tipped employees, you are required to pay Social Security and Medicare (FICA) taxes of 7.65 percent on tips that are reported to you. The logic behind this rule is to insure that tipped employees are adequately covered by Social Security pension, disability and survivor’s benefits. That’s great for employees, but employers are saddled with increased payroll expense. Surprisingly, the IRS has given food and beverage establishments a tool to help ease their pain. If you are a food and beverage establishment where tipping is customary, you may be eligible for the IRS FICA Tip Credit. In order to qualify for the credit, you must meet both of the following requirements:

1 2

You have employees who received tips from customers for providing, delivering or serving food or beverages for consumption; and You paid or incurred employer Social Security and Medicare taxes on these tips

The FICA tip credit is determined on a minimum wage capped amount of $5.15 per hour. The credit has not been affected by any minimum wage increases since January 1, 2007. No credit is given to the extent tips are needed to bring an employee’s compensation up to the $5.15 federal minimum hourly wage rate. For example, if the employee is paid $3.75 per hour and tips of $1.40 per hour were applied to reach the statutory minimum wage of $5.15, the $1.40 per hour in tips cannot be used towards the credit.

The FICA Tip Credit, also known as the 45B credit, is claimed on the company’s Federal income tax return. To claim the credit, Form 8846, Credit for Employer Social Security and Medicare Taxes on Certain Employee Tips, should be completed and filed with the company’s federal income tax return.

Calculating the FICA Tip Credit

The 45B credit equals the employer’s portion of FICA taxes that have been paid on tipping income in excess of the Federal minimum wage. The employer’s portion of FICA taxes is 7.65 percent (6.2 percent Social Security plus 1.4 percent Medicare). Although the employee’s portion of social security taxes is reduced by 2 percent in 2012, the employer rate (6.2 percent) is not reduced. Therefore, the FICA tax credit rate remains 7.65 percent in 2011. You cannot claim both the 45B credit and a FICA tax expense deduction. If you claim the credit, you must reduce your Social Security and Medicare tax deduction accordingly. Credits generally are more beneficial than expense deductions. A credit is a dollar-for-dollar reduction of your tax liability. The expense deduction only reduces your taxable income. You and your CPA should evaluate annually whether the credit or the expense deduction is more beneficial to you. In these tough economic times, tax relief is more important than ever. The 45B credit is a great tool for food and beverage industry establishments. If you think you may qualify for the credit, consult with your tax advisor to discuss some of the complex provisions of the credit not discussed in this article.


As an example: assume an employee works 30 hours a week and is paid $2.83 an hour. This employee reports $350 in tips for the week. The credit is calculated as follows: Weekly Wages 30 hours x $2.83 hourly rate + $350 tips $434.90 Wages Paid at Minimum 30 hours x $5.15 minimum wage for 45(B) credit $154.50 Tax Credit $434.90 – $154.50 x 7.65 percent $21.45 The potential for tax savings can be significant. In our scenario, this restaurant owner could have a potential credit at the end of the year of more than $1,000 on just one employee ($21.45 x 52 weeks = $1,115.40).


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Food Allergies With food allergies on the rise—one in 25 Americans reports a food allergy—restaurants are more likely to have guests who require a special meal. Are you prepared to safely serve a guest who has food allergies? Close to half of fatal food allergy reactions are triggered by food served in a restaurant or other foodservice establishment. Nearly 43 percent of restaurants surveyed by the NRA do not currently train staff on food allergens. Catherine Vandermer, regional sales manager for the National Restaurant Association (NRA), presented an educational seminar on food allergens during the Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association’s (PRLA) Annual Membership Meeting. She encouraged attendees to be leaders of the industry by developing a food allergy management plan for their operations and training their employees. A food allergy occurs when the immune system mistakenly attacks a food protein, resulting in symptoms of an allergic reaction. Symptoms of an allergic reaction range from mild (rash, itching, swelling, hives) to severe (trouble breathing, wheezing, loss of consciousness), and even may result in death. The severity of the symptoms increases with repeated exposures. Common food allergens include: milk and dairy products, eggs and egg products, fish and shellfish, wheat/gluten, nuts, and soy and soy products. The NRA collaborated with the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN) to develop “Welcoming Guests with Food Allergies,” a program to train restaurant staff to safely prepare and serve food to guests with food allergies. Visit FAAN’s website, www.foodallergy.org, for more information on food allergens or to download “Welcoming Guests with Food Allergies.” The National Restaurant Association Solutions are developing a training curriculum, titled “ServSafe Allergens,” which it expects to release this spring. The PRLA will report details of this release to our members or you can visit servsafe.com this spring for more information.


Nearly 43 percent of restaurants surveyed by the NRA do not currently train staff on food allergens.



Knowledge is power in your operation. As a member of the Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association (PRLA), you have many informational resources available at your fingertips to help you with your day-to-day legal, regulatory and operational questions.

Recently some members have requested information on what to do if a federal wage-and-hour compliance officer visits an establishment. The Department of Labor’s (DOL) Wage and Hour Division has the right to conduct investigative audits of all businesses to check compliance with the requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act. Below are answers to some common questions addressing what to expect and how to prepare. What are the most common reasons why I may be selected for an audit? • Employers are often chosen at random. • The DOL may target employers in a particular industry if it believes the industry has a high rate of wage-andhour violations. • An employee or former employee may have filed a complaint. Can an auditor just show up without notice? Most of the time an employer will receive notice that an investigation will be conducted and the investigator will schedule an appointment, but they may show up without notice. Can my records be examined without a warrant? Although federal courts have deemed warrantless inspections by the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration unconstitutional, it appears that wage-and-hour investigations are different. By law, the investigator has the

right to demand that an employer produce all relevant employment records. However, employers can generally arrange for an on-site inspection of these records that cannot be conveniently moved. What am I required to do regarding employee interviews?

• illegal tip pools • improper deductions for uniforms • improper computation of overtime, especially as it relates to nonexempt employees • inadequate records

Employers should make the names and addresses of employees available when asked. There is no legal requirement that employees be made available on the employer’s time or at the business. You have the right to schedule the interviews to cause the least disruption to your business. It is suggested that employers may want to request a delay in the investigation until they have had a chance to speak with their employees. It is important to have open discussions with your employees, especially if the audit has been triggered by a disgruntled employee. What to expect after your audit conference? Once the investigator prepares his or her findings (which may take some time), he or she will make an appointment with the employer to discuss the findings. If the investigator indicates they have found a violation, an employer may wish to contact an attorney and have the attorney attend the interview. Some items which most frequently appear in audit reports: • improper meal credits

If the investigator finds a violation, a demand will be made that the employer correct the violation(s) and compensate for all back wages claimed due as a result of the violation(s). Do not agree to this demand until you have an opportunity to discuss the demand made with someone who has expertise in this subject, such as your attorney or accountant. At this time it is also unwise to argue with the investigator. Simply ask for a detailed breakdown of alleged unpaid wages and review with the appropriate specialists.

This information has been summarized from the National Restaurant Association Legal Problem Solver. The Legal Problem Solver is a free, online member resource that summarizes various legal topics, including tip reporting, employee meals, uniforms, etc. Visit restaurant.org/ profitability/support/legal to access all available topics.

• improper computation of tip credits



• 19


what’s happening around the state? BERKS-SCHUYLKILL CHAPTER • Steve Stetzler, of Deitsch Eck Restaurant, was installed for his 15th consecutive term as chapter president at an installation luncheon on January 21 at The Peanut Bar, Reading.

BRANDYWINE CHAPTER • The chapter’s annual Holiday Party was at RiverCrest Golf Club & Preserve in Phoenixville on December 2. The event featured the installation of this chapter’s officers and board of directors for 2013. • PJW Restaurant Group purchased the Cheeseburger in Paradise in Exton and will be converting it to a Pour House (www. pjspourhouse.com) to open in late April. • Stepping out for a bite has a whole new meaning for restaurateur Jim Creed, owner of Creed’s Seafood & Steaks in King of Prussia, who stepped onto his home’s patio and was bitten by a copperhead. Jim has recovered and if you want to hear his story, drop by Creed’s for a complimentary Snake Bite Martini! CENTRAL CHAPTER • Lebanon County Career & Tech Center students participated in the grand opening of Lebanon VA Medical Center’s Patriot Café by creating and donating a 5-foot tall gingerbread house.

• Alfred’s Victorian Restaurant in Middletown hosted the chapter’s President’s Night on Monday, January 14. Brian Dailey of Hershey Entertainment & Resorts Downtown Restaurants was installed as the 2013 chapter president, with Ron Kizima of Circle C/Papa John’s and Rob Billet of Hoss’s Steak & Sea House serving as vice president and treasurer, respectively. • Appalachian Brewing Company is proud to announce the launch of its new website www.abcbrew.com. ABC listened to customer’s suggestions and delivered a website full of info that is a breeze to navigate, and offers some great new features. One of these features allows you to order beer and craft soda, brewery direct, through a “Craft To Go” page! • Along with its AAA Four Diamond award, The Golden Sheaf at the Hilton Harrisburg also notched the Wine Spectator Best of Award of Excellence and DiRoNA Distinction in Dining award in 2012. • The Cumberland Valley Visitors Bureau (CVVB) announced the winners for the 2013 Best of the Valley at the annual Cumberland Valley Tourism Conference on November 14, 2012. The CVVB has been collecting votes on its website throughout the year for the best spots to eat, shop, sleep and play in Cumberland Valley. Pheasant Field B&B, Carlisle nabbed Best Lodging and Allenberry Resort Inn & Playhouse, Boiling Springs won Best Attraction!

LANCASTER CHAPTER • The Lancaster Chapter President’s Night was held on Monday, January 28 at 6 p.m. at the Historic Revere Tavern, Paradise, where the tavern’s proprietor, Tim Watson, was installed as the 2013 chapter president. • Foxchase Golf Club’s inaugural Gobbler’s Cup golf tournament, held on Friday, November 23, included food, prizes and a day

20 •

of unconventional golf. This sold out event featured holes where golfers used the same club, teed off with tennis rackets and putted at extra-small and extra-large cups.



• On December 1, five students from The Pennsylvania School of Culinary Arts — A Division of YTI Career Institute, Lancaster were invited to assist celebrity chef Robert Irvine (Food Network’s Restaurant: Impossible) during a live stage show in York. The students shared their reasons for pursuing culinary arts. Irvine told them that food is something special because it gives them the opportunity to touch people’s lives.

• Auntie Anne’s Pretzels, the iconic brand made famous by its fresh, hand-rolled treats, was featured in the premiere season of A&E’s new original real-life series “Be the Boss,” a competition-based show that pits two employees of a franchised company against each other in the battle of a lifetime – vying for the chance to become the owner of their very own franchise. Auntie Anne’s “Be the Boss” episode aired Sunday, December 16, 2012. • In December, the Fairfield Inn & Suites, Lancaster unveiled its new look after undergoing a complete makeover during a conversion from Fairfield Inn to Fairfield Inn & Suites. The contemporary custom décor is designed to provide both business and leisure guests just what they need for uncomplicated and productive travel. • Singer Equipment Company of Elverson, its New York division M. Tucker, and its employees pooled their resources to help those affected by Hurricane Sandy. During a week-long campaign, employees donated 2,736 cases of spring water—a whopping 65,664 bottles! The idea came from one of Singer’s employees, Kevin Rudnitsky, who initiated the challenge and offered to match the first 300 cases with an equal donation of his own. Singer drivers delivered the water to the Salvation Army Franklin Women’s Shelter in Bronx, NY. While Singer and Tucker employees were marginally affected by the storm, many of their customers and associates suffered significant damage. More than 70 percent of employees offered donations, creating the overwhelming response.



• Marzoni’s Brick Oven & Brewing Company opened its second location in Greenwood, on December 3, 2012. Marzoni’s specializes in hand-made brick oven pizza, Italian-American cuisine and hand crafted lagers and ales.

• Last August Chris Sirianni of The Brewerie at Union Station was nominated for the Erie’s Finest Young Professional Award based on his career success and community involvement. He and the five other nominees were asked to raise funds on behalf of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation over a 10-week period. Chris presented the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation with more than $9,000, earning him recognition as the top fundraiser and the distinction of Erie’s Finest Young Professional of 2012.

• Hoss’s Steak & Sea House was inducted into the Blair County Business Half of Fame in October. Hoss’s CEO and Founder, Willard E. (Bill) Campbell, accepted the honor on behalf of the company. Campbell said, “He was humbled by the Hall of Fame recognition,” and thanked the employees for contributing to the success of the company. PHILADELPHIA CHAPTER • Twenty-two Marriott branded hotels throughout the greater Philadelphia area came together under the umbrella of the Marriott Business Council of Philadelphia, to raise $80,000 for local charities at the Seventh Annual Monte Carlo event, held on November 7 at the Courtyard Philadelphia Downtown. The event drew more than 300 participants and supported the Children’s Miracle Network and The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. To date, this annual event has raised almost $500,000 for these organizations.

• On Monday, February 11, the Plymouth Tavern will host the chapter’s Installation Gala. Proceeds of this event will support the Educational Foundation’s Scholarship Program. WESTERN CHAPTER • Renaissance Pittsburgh Hotel will host the PRLA Spring Membership Meeting, March 10-11, 2013. Housed in the iconic Fulton Building, this boutique luxury hotel offers magnificent views of the Allegheny River and the Pittsburgh skyline from guest rooms and meeting spaces. • The Priory Hotel and Pittsburgh’s Grand Hall at the Priory celebrated their 25th anniversary on November 26, 2012. • Church Brew Works earned four medals at October’s Great American Beer Festival in Denver, making this Pittsburgh legend the second most decorated brewery at the 2012 festival. Steve Sloan, brew master, was awarded Best Brewer in the Large Brewpub Category and Church Brew Works notched Best Brewpub in America in the Large Brewpub category.

• Philadelphia Chapter members met on January 9 at the Irish Pub on 20th Street to learn about protecting their business from mandatory paid sick leave. • Darden just kicked off an annual Community Grants program that will allow each restaurant in the company to award a $1,000 grant to a non-profit organization that applies and qualifies. With more than 100 Darden restaurants in Pennsylvania, this Community Grants program will award upwards of $100,000 in Pennsylvania alone. • The Philadelphia Chapter Board Installation will be held on February 19 at the Omni Hotel at Independence Park. Joe Campbell of Chickie’s & Pete’s will be installed as the chapter president, with Jon Myerow, Tria, as the vice president. Call the PRLA office for details or to register.

• The Western Chapter Installation & Awards Gala will be held on Sunday, February 10 at St. Clair Country Club in Upper St. Clair. The event will feature delicious food stations created by Chef Vincent Sanzotti and team. • Double Wide Grill’s two locations in Southside Pittsburgh and Mars now offer gluten-free menu items. Check out these “vintage gas stations turned restaurants” at www.doublewidegrill.com. • Common Plea Hospitality Group, Pittsburgh, purchased La Crème Catering on November 15, 2012. The acquisition of La Crème includes an exclusive catering contract for Common Plea Catering at The Studio on Fifth, a unique production studio event venue at WQED. Common Plea is also exclusive caterer at Heinz Hall and Heinz History Center.

For more information on any of the above events or to include your event or news in the next issue of Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Matters, contact Heidi Howard, PRLA meeting and event planner, at (800) 345-5353 or email to hhoward@prla.org. WINTER 2013


• 21


Use of Criminal Background Checks in the Hiring Process: What New EEOC Guidelines Mean for Pennsylvania Employers by Michael E. Rowan, Esquire Shumaker Williams, P.C. General Counsel, Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association


and often useful, component of the hiring process for many employers in the hospitality industry. However, in light of recent pronouncements by the United States Equal Opportunity Commission (EEOC), employers should think twice before automatically conducting criminal background checks on all applicants. In 2012, the EEOC issued new guidelines regarding the use of criminal background checks in the hiring process. The new guidelines prohibit the use of broad-based blanket exclusions of any applicant with an arrest or criminal history. Rather, the EEOC’s

new guidelines require a more nuanced approach that considers various factors including the nature of the crime, the time elapsed and the nature of the job. The new guidelines further require the employer to make an individualized assessment to determine whether its policy as applied is job related and consistent with a “business necessity.” There are two ways in which an employer’s use of criminal background checks may violate Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibition of employment discrimination based upon race, sex, religion and national origin. Title VII prohibits employers from engaging in “disparate treatment” of employees, i.e., treating job applicants with the same criminal backgrounds differently based upon race, religion, sex or national origin. Title VII also prohibits “disparate impact” discrimination. “Disparate impact” liability exists where an employer applies a neutral policy that uniformly excludes applicants based upon certain criminal conduct, but the exclusion still disproportionately excludes applicants of a certain race or national origin. There can be “disparate impact” liability under Title VII where an employer’s criminal record screening policy disproportionately screens out members of Title VIIprotected group, and the employer does not demonstrate that the policy is job related for the positions in question and consistent with business necessity. To establish that a rejection of an applicant based on criminal conduct that has a disparate impact is “job related” and “consistent with business necessity,” the employer must “show that the policy operates to effectively link specific criminal conduct, and its dangers, with the risks inherent in the duties of a particular position.” The EEOC explains that the employer can meet the “job-related and consistent with business necessity” defense where the employer develops a targeted screening process that considers at least the nature of the crime, the time elapsed and the nature of the job. Further, the employer’s policy must provide an opportunity for an individualized assessment for those people excluded by the screen to determine if the policy as applied is job related and consistent with business necessity. The individualized assessment should include (1) notice to the individual that he has been screened out because of a criminal conviction, (2) an opportunity for the applicant to demonstrate that the exclusion should not be applied due to his particular circumstances, and (3) consideration by the employer as to whether additional information provided by the applicant warrants an exception to the exclusion.

22 •



WELCOME NEW MEMBERS Restaurant Members 1201 Kitchen Erie, PA Donna’s Diner LLC Sharon, PA

The Breeches Bar & Grille Boiling Springs, PA Log Cabin Restaurant Leola, PA Loxley’s Restaurant Lancaster, PA

Geo’s Restaurant & Lounge Latrobe, PA

Nicky’s Italian Cafe & Smokehouse Bethlehem, PA

Jimmy John’s Harrisburg, PA

Dingbats Indiana Indiana, PA

Joe Roots Grill Erie, PA

Oyster Bar & Restaurant Wilkes Barre, PA

Judy’s Healthy Kitchen West Chester, PA

Johnny B’s North East, PA

Kahkwa Club Erie, PA

The B&W Sports Bar Philadelphia PA

Maggiano’s Little Italy King of Prussia, PA

The Bistro Wayne, PA

Pamelas Restaurants Pittsburgh, PA

The Rodin Restaurant Philadelphia, PA

Trindle Bowl Mechanicsburg, PA

Centuries On The Square Gettysburg, PA

Waterford Hotel Waterford, PA

Ironwoods Restaurant York, PA

Carmine’s Pizzeria Chester Springs, PA

Knickers Pub York, PA

Croft’s Tavern Spring City, PA

Bigelow Grille Pittsburgh, PA

Restaurant Alba Malvern, PA

Eleven Pittsburgh, PA

Event Horizon LLC Hershey, PA

Mad Mex – Monroeville Monroeville, PA

O’Reilly’s Tap Room Harrisburg, PA

Mad Mex – Robinson Pittsburgh, PA

Valley Green Golf Club Etters, PA

Mad Mex – Cranberry Cranberry Township, PA

Down To Earth Catering State College, PA

The Bistro Greensburg, PA

Recognizing the potential difficulty applying these guidelines, the EEOC offers what it deems to be “best practices” for employers considering use of criminal record information when making employment decisions: • Eliminate policies or practices that exclude people from employment based on any criminal record. • Train managers, hiring officials and decision-makers about Title VII and its prohibition on employment discrimination. • Develop a narrowly tailored written policy and procedure for screening applicants and employees for criminal conduct. o Identify essential job requirements and the actual circumstances under which the jobs are performed. o Determine the specific offenses that may demonstrate unfitness for performing such jobs. o Determine the duration of exclusions for criminal conduct based on all available evidence. o Record the justification for the policy and procedures. o Note and keep a record of consultations and research considered in crafting the policy and procedures.

Allied Members Adelphia Seafood 3024 Penn Avenue West Lawn, PA 19609 Stephanie Neustadter Broadband Hospitality 590 E. Western Reserve Road Youngstown, OH 44514 Curt Weingart Cintas Corporation #395 111 Smile Way York, PA 17404 Norman Cella Ettline Foods Corporation 2100 Pleasant View Drive York, PA 17406 Amy Carr Gurtler Industries 1501 N. Highview Lane Alexandria, VA 22311 Ryan King

Professional Graphic Communications Inc. 2260 Big Sewickley Creek Road Sewickley, PA 15143 Joy Heming Restaurant Rescue Consulting 64 Elizabeth Street Landisville, PA 17538 Steve Smith Sequoia Waste Solutions 90 Beta Drive Pittsburgh, PA 15238 Brock Mantella TLC Sewer & Drain 19 West 4th Street Bridgeport, PA 19405 David Melle

Lodging Members Holiday Inn Express Cranberry Cranberry Township, PA

Ettline Foods Corporation 2100 Pleasant View Drive York, PA 17406 Amy Carr

Seven Springs Mountain Resort Seven Springs, PA

M.A.D. Consulting 3968 New Castle Road Pulaski, PA 16143 Jack Kimbell

Institution Members

On Deck Capital 155 East 56th Street New York, NY 10022 Eitan Smilchensky

Concordia Lutheran Ministries Cabot, PA Stratford University Baltimore, MD

Panoramic Performance Marketing LLC PO Box 261 Monongahela, PA 15063 Barry Anderson Pest Control Technicians PO Box 2129 Norristown, PA 19404 Joe Silvestrini

• Train managers, hiring officials and decision-makers on how to implement the policy and procedures consistent with Title VII. • When asking questions about criminal records, limit inquiries to records for which exclusion would be job related for the position in question and consistent with business necessity. • Keep information about applicants’ and employees’ criminal records confidential. Only use it for the purpose for which it was intended. Despite these “best practices,” the EEOC guidelines put employers that conduct criminal background checks in a legally precarious position. The guidelines neglect safe harbors and put an undue burden on small-sized employers specifically, which may have trouble understanding what the EEOC expects of them. At a minimum, to the extent an employer seeks to use criminal background checks, it must exercise caution. For more information concerning the EEOC’s guidelines and how the changes may affect your hiring practices, please contact Michael Rowan (rowan@shumakerwilliams.com) or Marc Tarlow (tarlow@shumakerwilliams.com) of Shumaker Williams, P.C.’s Employment Law Group.



• 23

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PA Restaurant & Lodging Matters l Winter 2013  

The official publication of the PA Restaurant & Lodging Association.

PA Restaurant & Lodging Matters l Winter 2013  

The official publication of the PA Restaurant & Lodging Association.