Can employers made deductions for tips or other types of compensation under Sonoma’s minimum wage ordinance?

Sonoma’s minimum wage does not allow for a tip credit or deduction, nor does it allow an employer to offset the minimum wage by the costs of housing or meals provided or paid for by the employer. Employers may not fund any increase in compensation required by Sonoma’s minimum wage through charges or wage deductions for parking, meals, uniforms or other items.

Commissions and guaranteed gratuities (not including discretionary tips or gratuities) may be counted toward payment of the minimum wage when they are earned and paid together with other compensation paid to an employee and together are equal to or greater than the current minimum wage.

The Minimum Wage ordinance originally included a medical benefit credit of up to $1.50 per hour to go into effect January 1, 2021 (Section 2.80.040(F) of the original ordinance).  However, at the meeting of November 16, 2020 the City Council voted to remove the Health Benefit Credit.

See Chapter 2.80 of the Sonoma Municipal Code (Minimum Wage) for further details.

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