SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Restaurants and other San Francisco businesses charged customers $14 million in extra health care fees last year, but a big chunk of that money didn't go to health care.
City records show that dozens of businesses with the surcharges spent less than half of the money they collected on medical expenses last year. The companies, including high-profile restaurants, say workers aren't claiming benefits.
Businesses started charging customers the extra fees in response to the city's landmark universal health care program. It makes businesses with 20 workers or more pitch in a couple of dollars an hour to cover their health care.
New laws are in effect this year to boost medical spending and get rid of misleading surcharges. The mayor's office and the Golden Gate Restaurant Association say they will reduce the gap between surcharges and spending.