As we look forward to an exciting 2019, we wanted to take the opportunity to reflect with gratitude on all that we were able to accomplish at the NYC Hospitality Alliance last year.
In doing a recap of 2018, the NYC Hospitality Alliance monitored countless proposed laws impacting the city’s Hospitality industry. Our goal was to work towards the defeat of a number of anti-business proposals, mitigate the impact of others and advocate for important regulatory reforms. This year however will be most remembered for restaurant operators and workers fighting in solidarity urging Governor Cuomo to keep the restaurant tip credit intact.
Our strategy for accomplishing those goals was multi-faceted. We published op-eds and met with a number of government officials. Throughout the year, we held save the tip credit roundtables in neighborhoods from Brooklyn to the Bronx. The ‘Alliance also co-hosted rallies with hundreds of workers and operators given the opportunity to submit crucial testimony to the Department of Labor to explain why the tip credit is so important to restaurants and the jobs they create.
These events also offered both female restaurateurs and tipped workers the opportunity to respond to the high profile opponents including actress Sarah Jessica Parker for her misguided support of eliminating the tip credit. Our efforts even led to support from the Reverend Al Sharpton to support small business owners and workers to urge Governor Cuomo to keep the restaurant tip credit.
As we enter 2019, the battle continues as the Governor has yet to issue his final determination on the future of the tip credit. The Alliance promises that we will continue our efforts to save the tip credit and support our industry.
Among the highlights of 2018, was to have one of our long time agenda goals come to fruition. With the growth of the importance of our industry to the economy of New York City, we have long advocated for the creation of an Office of Nightlife. Mayor Bill DeBlasio established that office in 2017 and last year appointed Ariel Palitz as the City’s first nightlife mayor.
In addition to our focus on the tip-credit issue, the Alliance has a number of issues on our agenda. These include the amending of rules for earned safe and sick time. We continue to monitor the City’s sexual harassment policies. The Alliance will also continue to report the latest updates from the State Liquor Authority.
This year, we will once again look to build on top of our slate of exciting events. In 2018, some 2200 plus leaders of the hospitality industry attended New York City Hospitality Alliance conferences, training sessions and events. Our members and their guests can once again look forward to an exciting agenda of events in 2019 that will kick off on March 6th with our annual State of the Industry Conference at the New York Institute of Technology.
We are also proud of our ability as a group to help our members embrace technology. Our annual technology conference has become a bellwether event for the industry with a look into the latest trends.
Last year, we generated some 200 plus newsletters to enable our community to stay up to date with changing laws, proposed regulations and industry trends. Our social media outreach will continue to include news, op-eds, innovative products and ideas on how restaurants can save money. We were particularly proud of our Election Night 2018 recap, which gave instant insight to our members of what the results at the polls meant to their business.
The Alliance also understands that in addition to all of the hard work required to accomplish such a comprehensive agenda, there needs to be time to relax and enjoy each other’s company. From our annual Alliance Awards in the Spring to our Summer reception on the Hudson, the New York City Hospitality Alliance offers a yearlong calendar of networking opportunities.
We are looking forward to a great 2019 and to welcoming you at one of our upcoming events.