Councilmembers Pedersen, Strauss Advance Legislation to Protect Seattle’s Diverse Restaurants

City Council’s Economic Development Committee Passes Their Bill Capping Delivery Fees at 15%

SEATTLE – Councilmembers Alex Pedersen (District 4, Northeast Seattle) and Dan Strauss (District 6, Northwest Seattle) issued the following statements after the City Council’s Economic Development Committee unanimously approved their legislation today supporting Seattle’s diverse local restaurants by limiting the fees they need to pay to third party delivery corporations. 

Councilmember Alex Pedersen, (District 4, Northeast Seattle): “This small business legislation capping fees charged by delivery companies is vital to support Seattle’s diverse restaurants. Because Seattle’s Emergency Order for the pandemic could end soon, our diverse local restaurants face a financial cliff unless we take swift action. I look forward to the entire City Council and Mayor enacting this legislation as soon as possible, so that Seattle’s diverse local restaurants can be free from the fear of fees to focus on fantastic food. 

Councilmember Dan Strauss, (District 6, Northwest Seattle): “Capping food delivery fees at 15% during the pandemic has benefited both our smallest businesses and consumers. This was good for Seattleites during the pandemic and remains a good foundation for long-term recovery. This small business legislation means restaurants have more control over their economic survival and supports a vibrant, diverse restaurant scene in Seattle. This is a commonsense protection for our local restaurateurs and foodies alike.” 

BACKGROUND: If approved by the full City Council and the Mayor as early as next week, Council Bill 120379 will make permanent the 15% cap on fees that third-party delivery corporations can charge to Seattle’s restaurants. The 15% cap on fees was originally adopted as part of Seattle’s Civil Emergency Order in 2020 and has been helping many local restaurants survive the pandemic during the past two years. In addition to making the 15% cap permanent, the legislation adds flexibility by enabling any restaurant to opt out of the cap if it wants to receive additional services from the delivery corporations such as marketing. Several other cities across the nation – like Minneapolis, New York City, Philadelphia, and San Francisco – have made their caps on delivery fees permanent as well. Before the pandemic, out-of-town delivery corporations were charging Seattle restaurants delivery fees as high as 30% on each food order. 

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