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Clark County reinforces 15% cap for third-party food delivery

The Clark County Commission made it more difficult Tuesday for third-party food delivery companies to evade a 15 percent cap on how much they can charge restaurants.

In August, the commission passed a bill limiting delivery fees for all restaurants in the unincorporated county until Feb. 1, acknowledging that establishments were hurting during the pandemic.

But county lawmakers later heard from restaurant owners who said they were being charged a separate fee for simply appearing on a platform. When combined with delivery, the so-called marketing fee raised total costs to more than 15 percent.

So the commission amended its bill Tuesday to spell out that the cap includes not just basic delivery service but also listing on a platform. Any additional advertising, requiring extra charges, must be agreed to in writing by a restaurant.

While the county ordinance does not specify which companies prompted the change, Commissioner Tick Segerblom and other officials have criticized tech giant Grubhub.

The company previously noted its business model was different from other platforms and that the ordinance did not place a cap on marketing or advertising services. It did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment Tuesday.

Segerblom said that most third-party food delivery companies agreed to the amended bill, although he was unsure about Grubhub.

“But I just think we have to go forward,” he said. “As you know, these small restaurants are just hanging on by their fingernails, and anything we can do to help them I think is critical.”

Contact Shea Johnson at sjohnson@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0272. Follow @Shea_LVRJ on Twitter.

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