Pizza stores are impacted by many of the same regulations and laws that threaten the livelihood of small businesses everywhere. The American Pizza Community works together to tell policymakers how rulings like the new federal menu labeling law, the new overtime eligibility rule, the proposed change to joint employer status for franchisees, and other policies hurt our businesses. There are nearly 73,000 pizzerias in our country, creating more than 1 million jobs. We proudly support the communities we serve.
For the past six years, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has tried to impose a “one size fits all” regulation that will be unworkable and burdensome for our industry. While Congress has continued to delay the date of implementation, this does not solve the problem but rather leaves business in a constant state of uncertainty.
The pizza industry agrees that nutrition disclosure is important and we are not asking for an exemption. However, that is not what this is about: this is about flexibility, and a modern, meaningful, workable solution that benefits business and consumers.
Maintenance and upkeep of a menu board costs each pizza store approximately $5,000 per year for something that few of our customers will see, and even fewer will use to make meaningful decisions.
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has radically threatened to change the franchise model between independent franchisees and franchisors. This definition separating independent franchisees and franchisors has been legally protected for 30 years – defined by “actionable” control over an independent entity. The new definition is “ability” to control, and can imply employee liability for both an entity and a franchisee or 3rd party agency (staffing, services, etc).
This new standard could destroy the franchise model: businesses could close – or worse yet, people will avoid becoming franchisees altogether due to loss of the independence and ability to run their own business.
The Department of Labor’s recent changes to the overtime eligibility rule are cause for alarm. The new federal ruling raises the threshold for employees to be exempt from overtime pay from $23,660 to $47,476 and goes into effect December 1, 2016, and pegs it to inflation.
According to the National Center for Policy Analysis, the rule will cost the restaurant and retail industries $2 billion annually. Not only will a larger portion of the workforce be required overtime pay, but the move will also negatively impact flexibility for employees and increase administrative and operating costs.
Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS)
Since the RFS was implemented in 2005 and expanded in 2007, the restaurant industry has faced unprecedented food cost volatility and escalating inflation as more land has been diverted away from producing food to produce biofuels. In a highly competitive pizza industry, the ability to pass along higher food cost to the consumers is limited.
The RFS has led directly to margin squeezes for the pizza restaurant operator and is estimated to cost quick service restaurant operators $18,000/restaurant annually.