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Ivar's Seafood Restaurants President Bob Donegan decided to raise prices, tell customers that they don't need to tip, and parcel the added revenue among the hourly staff.
For some of the restaurant's lesser paid workers — including bussers and dishwashers — that's meant as much as 60 percent more.
At the same time, revenue has soared, supportive customers are leaving additional tips even though they don't need to and servers and bartenders are on pace to increase their annual pay by thousands, with wages for a few of the best compensated approaching $80,000 a year.
"It's been a surprise," Donegan said of the response. "The customers seem to like it, the employees seem to like it, and it seems to be working, at least in this location."
'I've spoken of the Shining City all my political life. …In my mind it was a tall, proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, windswept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace; a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity. And if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here. That's how I saw it, and see it still.'" Ronald Reagan