Amnesty Plan Expected in the Healthy SF Scandal

The fall out continues surrounding the Healthy SF surcharge scandal amid new allegations that more than 50 San Francisco restaurants owners have been identified for improper use of the surcharge fees passed onto diners to cover the cost of city-mandated healthcare. According The San Francisco Chronicle, District Attorney Dennis Herrera is set to announce later today an amnesty program requiring restaurateurs and other business owners to pay back a portion of the money to their employees. So far, only one restaurant has been singled out by name in the case and it has already agreed to a settlement to pay back past and current employees for denied healthcare expenses. We’re curious to see if part of the amnesty program will ensure the anonymity of the other businesses charged in the case.

What do you think? Do you think the dining public should be told which restaurants have been caught improperly pocketing the funds? Would it affect your decision to dine there in the future? Tell us what you think in the comments.


  1. Healthy SF was problematic from its inception. I would have been fine paying increased prices if that's what the restaurant felt it needed, but the tacked-on charge always stuck in my craw. Now, to find out that they have been collecting money and not even using it for employee health benefits?? If I were more surprised I would be outraged.

    Of course I want the names of restaurants which have been stealing from its customers as well as its employees, and I will not dine there again until they have corrected the problem and paid penance.

    However, I also want a better written Healthy SF policy. Having restaurants collect an arbitrary amount of money and then expecting them to fairly and correctly use all of it to somehow provide health benefits is unrealistic at best and has always been an invitation to abuse the ability to surcharge customers.

    What I don't understand is how the restaurant industry is the only one that gets the public to subsidize the wages and benefits of its employees through tips and surcharges.

  2. The SF Civil Grand Jury was the first to report this widespread consumer fraud. Their report called for the Board of Supervisors to ban the practice of adding surcharges. Build the cost of employee benefits into the menu price like other companies do.