Miami-Dade Mayor Delays Deadline to End Automatic Tipping at Miami Airport

Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez has delayed a deadline that would have ended automatic tipping at the Miami International Airport.

Food and drink servers at Miami International Airport fear the effort to block automatic tips on bills means they'll lose money.

A measure established in 1975 is just now being enforced. Some Miami-Dade County officials, however, hope to change the decades-old rule.

An April 15 deadline has been delayed but it is not clear until when. In a statement, Gimenez's office wrote the will give the Board of County Commissioners time to "refine the restrictions in the current code and allow for tips included in patrons’ bills."

“It’s important to enforce the law, but in this case, the law needs to be updated by the Board of County Commissioners. I am looking to update this very antiquated code and want to give the option to restaurants to include fixed tips,” Gimenez said in a statement. “However, I will support any new code only if it includes two important requirements: there must be transparency from the establishments on patrons’ bills so they are aware that gratuities are being charged, and the code must ensure that the restaurant must hand over the tips to employees.”

Some workers said automatic tipping has been standard in most of MIA's bars and eateries for about a decade. Carlos Caballero and other servers at the airport are concerned about how they are going to make ends meet.

"We don't understand why they're trying to do this because this doesn't come out of their pocket, this does not come out of the company's pockets. This is a profit, it's a system how the United States is supposed to work," Caballero said.

"It's a situation where you have like people spending a hundred or two hundred dollars worth of food and alcohol and they don't tip you because it's not their culture," Adolfo Granados said.

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