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Clark County caps third-party food delivery fees at 15%

Updated August 4, 2020 - 5:26 pm

The Clark County Commission voted unanimously Tuesday to temporarily limit fees that third-party food delivery services can charge restaurants.

The commissioners heard from more than two dozen people during a public hearing on fees caps, including representatives of Uber Eats, Grubhub, DoorDash, the Nevada Restaurant Association and at least 18 local restaurants. They eventually settled on a cap of 15 percent, applicable to all restaurants in unincorporated Clark County, effective through Feb. 1.

Those speaking on behalf of the restaurants, including owners and staff from Tacotarian, Sparrow + Wolf, Eat, Old Soul, Graffiti Bao, Herbs and Rye, St. Honoré, Fukuburger and other establishments throughout the valley, were asking for a cap of 10 percent, effective through August 2021. They described the effects the current fees — which are often as high as 30 percent — have on their ability to turn a profit.

Some also used the opportunity to accuse the big delivery apps of other unfair business practices, including posting unauthorized and incorrect versions of restaurant menus. Tacotarian owner Kristen Corral presented a petition in favor of the 10 percent cap signed by more than 300 people.

Those representing the apps told the commission that they were fine with a temporary cap for a shorter period of time. They asked, however, that the maximum be set at 15 percent for small businesses with five or fewer restaurants, and 20 percent for larger operators.

Corral, who spearheaded the initiative with the help of Commissioner Tick Segerblom, was pleased with the final compromise.

“It’s a great start,” Corral said shortly after the vote. “And I’m so, so, so happy that all of these owners came out to support this today. Because it shows what a team we are and what a strong group we are when we need to get something done for the community.”

She and the group are hoping to have similar measures passed in the cities of Las Vegas, North Las Vegas and Henderson. The Nevada Restaurant Association’s Alexandria Dazlich says the turnout on Tuesday bodes well for those efforts.

“I think the fact that we have the community coming out and pushing, that makes all the difference,” Dazlich said after the vote.

Later Tuesday, commissioners heard from tavern owners asking to be allowed to relocate the gaming machines in their now-closed bar tops into standalone units outside of their bar areas.

Representatives of Steiner’s Pub, The Lodge, McMullan’s and others lobbied for approval to move all their machines to areas where customers could access them while their bars remain closed. Representatives of several casinos also spoke, arguing in favor the proposal, but asking that it be temporary, and limited to no more than seven of each business’s 15 bartop machines.

After discussing the proposals, and determining that they had the authority to direct the county manager not to enforce existing regulations prohibiting the taverns from moving their machines, commissioners chose to decide that issue at a meeting on Wednesday. At that Wednesday meeting, they unanimouly voted to allow for up to seven stand-alone machines per tavern.

Contact Al Mancini at amancini@reviewjournal.com. Follow @AlManciniVegas on Twitter and Instagram.

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