Today the National Restaurant Association launched StopTheDebitCardTax.com, to help restaurateurs connect with their members of Congress and voice opposition to the Financial Choice Act. Introduced by Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, the legislation seeks to repeal the debit card swipe-fee protections we fought so hard to secure.
A brief history of debit swipe-fee protections
In 2010, Congress passed legislation limiting the amount financial institutions could charge restaurants and other small businesses for processing debit card transactions. Before these protections were put in place, banks could essentially set their own rates for those fees.
Today, they are nearly half of what they were before debit swipe-fee protections passed. Seven years later, however, the reforms our industry secured are in jeopardy of being reversed. If Rep. Hensarling and other members of Congress are successful, restaurateurs could face skyrocketing fees once again.
Why the reforms are good for business
Debit card swipe-fee protections are critically important to our industry and consumers alike. In the first year alone, these protections saved consumers $5.8 billion in lower costs and supported 37,000 jobs.
If Wall Street gets its way and debit swipe-fee protections are removed, it would mean a massive tax on small businesses that goes directly into the pockets of the biggest banks in the country.
Swipe-fee reform has been and continues to be one of the most pressing matters for Main Street. Debit swipe fees are merchants’ second-highest operational cost only to labor. Preserving debit swipe-fee protections is essential for our industry.
As Congress continues to consider the Financial Choice Act, we’re urging members of our industry to fight back. Don’t let our legislators or the big banks hurt your business. Visit StopTheDebitCardTax.com to speak out today!
Logos, product and company names mentioned are the property of their respective owners.