Thank you everybody for bringing to light the real issue through all of this, our current employees.  Do we value our Employees?  No question.  So remember this, all 232 of you currently working for any Duke’s Restaurant location:  Duke’s Tipped Employees NEVER Make Less Than $9.04/hr!  We love you 🙂

If the bill passes and a tip credit of $1.79 is passed, we will maintain the current minimum wage of $9.04 per hour for all tipped employees.  Our tipped employees will never have a minimum wage less than $9.04.  If the minimum wage continues upward and it becomes necessary to exercise our right to the tip credit, we may do so BUT the minimum wage will never drop below $9.04 per hour for tipped employees.

This position is consistent with thoughts expressed earlier, that is, the objection we have to the current minimum wage bill is that it is unsustainable in the future because of its continual increases that are outpacing the ability of restaurants to increase revenue or cut other expenses which I’ve already outlined HERE.

Remember, you can never spend enough time at Duke’s!

I continue to support the bill because most restaurants in this state are on the edge financially.  They need help, I love this industry. We value our employees and we will continue to take good care of them as we have for 40 years.


PS:   Additionally, I have proposed that the State give tax credits to businesses with tipped employees as an incentive to hire new people and open new businesses.  Our state is in need of ideas to increase employment.  Let’s get people back to work.


  1. Terrific Duke. As always, you and your operation are a cut above the rest.

    • Thanks, Robert. I appreciate your comment.

  2. Sounds more like backpedaling due to poor reception. Why would you be in support of it if you have no intentions of utilizing it? Why do you want tipped employees everywhere but your restaurant to suffer?

    • The reception has actually been quite positive. We want to take care of our tipped employees now because we care about them. My biggest concern, however, is for the future. The law is not sustainable for 99% of the restaurants in this state. When the minimum wage goes to $15 per hour, not too many years from now, restaurants will really struggle to keep their doors open. Sometimes legislatures make laws that are not thought through to the future. This is one of those laws. I don’t want anyone to suffer. I’ve built my whole career on providing a great place to dine as well as a great place to work. I just don’t want to see it taken away from me through no fault of my own. And then our valued employees are exposed to the risk as well. What started out as a good idea to help people could ultimately hurt them when the restaurants fail. In my opinion and the opinion of almost every restaurant in this state, we are headed for real trouble. I just wish the legislature would wake up and realize the situation is really dangerous. Let’s not wait for restaurants to close their doors as proof of what I say. There is ample information available to anyone in power in this state government.

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