EPI Warns Maryland Senators Against Tip Credit Elimination

Following D.C. Disaster, Tip Credit Elimination Could Kill Thousands of Jobs
  • Publication Date: January 2024

Arlington, Va. – On Thursday, the Maryland Senate Finance committee will hear public testimony on Senate Bill 160, which would eliminate the state’s tip credit and raise the current required hourly wage for tipped employees by more than 300%.

The language mirrors a similar proposal introduced last year, which died in the committee after dozens of local employees voiced their concerns.

Rebekah Paxton, research director for the Employment Policies Institute, will testify at the hearing, highlighting the adverse impacts this policy would have on Maryland’s servers, bartenders, and restaurants. Her testimony will include:

  • The disastrous fallout from a similar proposal in neighboring Washington, D.C.
  • Data on the statewide consequences of tip credit elimination, which would kill an estimated 7,179 jobs and lead to $44 million of lost earnings for tipped employees. 
  • Insights from economic studies on the harmful track record of these policies across the country.

Ahead of the hearing, Paxton issued the following statement:

“Decades of economic research shows eliminating Maryland’s tip credit will only endanger the livelihoods of thousands of servers and bartenders. Washington, D.C. has already experimented with tip credit elimination, decimating jobs and earnings in less than a year and killing a once-thriving restaurant scene. Maryland lawmakers should tread carefully to avoid the same fate.”

The hearing will begin at 1:00 pm on Thursday, February 1. A livestream can be viewed here.