A lot of America is starting to reopen, and a businesses are trying to make back the losses during quarantine. Las Vegas has started opening back up, and some early travelers are reporting to have a "COVID-19 Surcharge" on their bills.
Restaurants that have been spotted with the surcharge were all housed under "Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises," who have recently told News 3 that the surcharge is no longer at any of their restaurants.
When the surcharge was still present, a notice at the bottom of the bill read "To help offset restrictions on our business resulting from the COVID-19 crisis, a 4% surcharge has been added to all guest checks. If you would like this removed, please let us know."
One diner said that he asked it to be removed, but added the extra percentage onto the servers tip. He later explained to News 3 that if it had been a Mom and Pop place, he would have had no issue with the charge, and that if it wasn't a corporation he'd "feel much more inclined to pay it.”
The Nevada Department of Taxation did put out a warning on June 15th, telling any establishments that "this additional fee added to the final selling price of retail sales appears to be a move to help recoup costs associated with added implementation expenses and other increased costs. Any business adding this fee is advised that this amount is subject to Nevada sales tax per Nevada Revised Statute 372.025 2(a). Please include these amounts with the Total Sales of your sales and use tax returns. Additionally, please ensure you have adjusted your point of sales systems to properly code this surcharge as a taxable item.”