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Tenants/Customers to pay 20 cents per tray issued at hawker centres

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Turbocharged

So many ridiculous T&C.

Many worms are out

http://www.makansutra.com/stories/1/1732/PleasePreserveourPublicHawkerCentres

 

c643a9_20centspertrayreturned.jpg

 

Open Letter to Snr Minister of State Dr Amy Khor

 
Dear SMS Dr Amy Khor, 
 
Please Preserve our Public Hawker Centres
 
Thank you so much for studying the situation on the unfair practices of the Social Enterprise Hawker Centre (SEHC) organisations. You now asked them to be transparent in their additional service fees and to keep it optional. But allow me to share that it is not about the transparency of the fees but the high overall operation fees in general, at such public owned and built hawker centres. You also said the rental and fees of a SEHC are comparable to other private food courts and halls in Singapore but I should suggest that it instead be compared to the other 100 plus established NEA run public hawkers centres and coffeeshops (some of which are already run by NTUC Foodfare now). The difference is quite stark. Private food courts can charge and levy any amount they deem fit as it’s a private enterprise. 
 
I thought I saw the worst in an East sited SEHC contract terms until a hawker from another SEHC shared their woes with me. This one takes the cake. 
 
Pay Rent Till Next Tenant Signs Up
 
They operate a SEHC noodle stall managed by a famous local food court chain. After a year, they decided to give up their $4k a month (the usual basic rents and with service fees that more than double it) stall as they could not sustain the business because footfall began to freefall after opening. To my horror,  they are made to pay up the remaining years and months of rent and fees left in their contract, or till another tenant is found (to management’s satisfaction, see image). That’s a painful minimum of $2k a month until further notice.  This new hawker is relocating to a high footfall residential area private coffeeshop for about the same rent and operation fees that guarantees an existing crowd and diners every day with less operation control. They now have to pay up the monthly “penalty” fees in the SEHC and also for rents their new stall. They are a start-up hawker fending for their family seeking help by running a public hawker centre stall with a so-called social enterprise model. But that’s not all.
 
20cts Per Tray Returned
 
I also note this SEHC has introduced a tray return for cashback system for customers (20cts each one they do so). The irony is- the hawkers are made to pay 20cts each time for each tray returned to their stall.  I note from the hawker that the figure amounts to anything from $400 to $800 a month just on tray returns alone (which is over and above the cleaning and maintenance fees). 
 
Raise Fees Anytime and Binding.
 
Even more.. they send professionally and independently written lawyer contracts on any update in management terms and charge the hawkers for the contracts drafted. This is rather ridiculous. Landlords do not charge tenants for standard contract offer letters in market practices. Worse, they say there’s even a clause that allow landlord to raise service and monthly fees anytime with given notice and that it is binding. 
 
Please Take Back Control of Public Hawker Centres, NEA.
 
I suggest the National Environment Agency (NEA) consider taking back control of the public owned hawker centres and SEHCs as these private companies are not totally clear and mindful as how they should be managed to public satisfaction, despite their best efforts. There are almost 30,000 hawker street food licenses in Singapore and only 6000 are sited in 114 public owned hawker centres. I urge NEA to run these 6000 like they always had, effectively and with minimal fuss, using even a market rate bidding system with minimal control on service and operation. The NEA are trained to have Singapore Civil Service obligations when they run it. The private operators don’t.  These 114 public owned Hawker Centres are created for, and powered by the people, which makes it such a great culture for the other 24,000 private stalls to emulate. Even our PM sees this as Unesco Intangible Award worthy. 
 
These revenue hungry private operators can rightly do their commercial rental and operation model, on a mutually agreed buyer-seller agreements in the privately owned coffeeshops, food halls and markets, canteens, food courts etc.. but please keep them away from our public hawker centres. We have to preserve low operation cost so hawkers can comfortably offer cheaper meals for poorer customers in our midst who depend on it, preserve this food heritage and encourage a new breed of hawker to rise to the fore and address continuity and sustainability.
 
It’s a Not-For-Profit Operation
 
If NEA should continue to allow these SEHC to be run by the private sectors, then allow a public independent team/committee to check up that they deliver on their promises to help promote and make the hawker food culture viable, affordable and sustainable for even the future generations. It is run on a Not-For-Profit model after all.
 I have suggested that this hawker write to you personally to share their struggles (and the likes of them) with you, so you can factor their concerns moving ahead as you craft even better policies for the public owned hawker centre operations in future. 
 
Thank you for taking time to understand my concerns for this great food heritage of our nation. I will be happy to provide more feedback if you so require.
 
KF Seetoh
Founder, Makansutra
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5th Gear

Reading Seetoh's scathing write-up just prompted a simple question from within.

For many years since post-independence, management of Hawker Centres have always been under the auspices of the NEA or her predecessor entity. This business model, if you will, has always worked and at least it did not create the sort of problems we are seeing now.

 

So what is the problem to request NEA to continue to manage instead of hiving out this function to "social" enterprises?

 

Yea sure, there are costs to be had, overheads to contend with when NEA manages the Hawker Centres. When NEA manages the Hawker Centres, there are problems as well as there is no perfect solution but i am very sure these problems are much preferrable to what we are seeing now under the questionable management from the "social" enterprises.

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6th Gear (edited)

The problem with these so called social enterprise is that they are not really social enterprise. These so called enterprises exist to make profits with terms and conditions that are unfair to the hawkers. No one say making $$ is wrong but its about the fairness of the system.

 

You people can understand or not?

Edited by RogerNg_185295
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Hypersonic (edited)

Reading Seetoh's scathing write-up just prompted a simple question from within.

For many years since post-independence, management of Hawker Centres have always been under the auspices of the NEA or her predecessor entity. This business model, if you will, has always worked and at least it did not create the sort of problems we are seeing now.

 

So what is the problem to request NEA to continue to manage instead of hiving out this function to "social" enterprises?

 

Yea sure, there are costs to be had, overheads to contend with when NEA manages the Hawker Centres. When NEA manages the Hawker Centres, there are problems as well as there is no perfect solution but i am very sure these problems are much preferrable to what we are seeing now under the questionable management from the "social" enterprises.

 

As i mentioned earlier in another post (think it's another thread), the obvious pitfalls have emerged of this social enterprise model which started in 2015.

I think govt will soon step in. But return back to NEA days? Maybe they will try some pte-public hybrid again. NTUC foodfare takeover of kopitiam seems to suggest that.

 

 

 

Edited by Lala81
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Supersonic

Not directed at any particular industry but just look at the number of scams, for example the Parallel Importers in the recent years.

CASE is a toothless tiger. So it's the consumers at the losing end.

 

Parallel imports are not scams.

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Supersonic

Parallel imports are not scams.

 

Some of them.

I don't mean all.

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5th Gear

As i mentioned earlier in another post (think it's another thread), the obvious pitfalls have emerged of this social enterprise model which started in 2015.

I think govt will soon step in. But return back to NEA days? Maybe they will try some pte-public hybrid again. NTUC foodfare takeover of kopitiam seems to suggest that.

No idea about your post sorry. Too busy to log in here nowadays. In any case, the NEA is going to be dissolved and amalgamated with two other statutory boards.

 

Yea sure they can carry on with their DoE to determine the best operating model. I hope it won’t be a case of socialising the expenses and privatising the profits.

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6th Gear

Correct me if I'm wrong. It seems the 20c tray return is not the main issue. Main issue seems that the hawker operator must be seen as keeping rent low? Thus it comes up with patterns to increase overall revenue by having all these additional charge. thus when reported, only rents will be compared and they will claim their hawker rent is cheaper than coffeeshops.

 

This social enterprise is basically ********. Govt for many years had wanted to do away with new hawkers alr cos they don't want to 'subsidize' hawkers below commercial rates. However, after not building hawkers for many years, they were pressured to build new hawkers thus they come up with this ******** basically to still say it's hawker, but private. And to make it more acceptable to public, call it some social enterprise ********

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5th Gear

Correct me if I'm wrong. It seems the 20c tray return is not the main issue. Main issue seems that the hawker operator must be seen as keeping rent low? Thus it comes up with patterns to increase overall revenue by having all these additional charge. thus when reported, only rents will be compared and they will claim their hawker rent is cheaper than coffeeshops.

 

This social enterprise is basically ********. Govt for many years had wanted to do away with new hawkers alr cos they don't want to 'subsidize' hawkers below commercial rates. However, after not building hawkers for many years, they were pressured to build new hawkers thus they come up with this ******** basically to still say it's hawker, but private. And to make it more acceptable to public, call it some social enterprise ********

yes, the rent is low, $1608 [thumbsup] , but other components add up to $4117.  [thumbsdown]  [knife]

post-65725-0-59139100-1539486388_thumb.gif

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4th Gear

Reading Seetoh's scathing write-up just prompted a simple question from within.

For many years since post-independence, management of Hawker Centres have always been under the auspices of the NEA or her predecessor entity. This business model, if you will, has always worked and at least it did not create the sort of problems we are seeing now.

 

So what is the problem to request NEA to continue to manage instead of hiving out this function to "social" enterprises?

 

Yea sure, there are costs to be had, overheads to contend with when NEA manages the Hawker Centres. When NEA manages the Hawker Centres, there are problems as well as there is no perfect solution but i am very sure these problems are much preferrable to what we are seeing now under the questionable management from the "social" enterprises.

NEA will not want to take back this type of "Sai Kang" to manage hawker centre. They will rather outsource out to another third party and anything wrong just point at that guy.

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Supercharged

Attended the Punggol Town Hub ground breaking recently and these are the hawker centres by 2027

post-7510-0-33409100-1539488306_thumb.jpg

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Turbocharged

NEA will not want to take back this type of "Sai Kang" to manage hawker centre. They will rather outsource out to another third party and anything wrong just point at that guy.

 

meaning we pay more and more for ministers to work less and less....

 

 

similarly.. they dont want TC "sai kang"... we saw what happened, very convenient.

 

similarly... transport, end up gravy train for cronies..

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Supersonic

Hawker Centre need marketing meh? I don't see chomp chomp or blk85 or Changi v need any marketing.

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Turbocharged

New hawker centres are operated by Not-For-Profit Social enterprises, which is bs. I will stay far far away!

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Supersonic

Attended the Punggol Town Hub ground breaking recently and these are the hawker centres by 2027

 

Think they better reflect the costs of opening and operating a stall first before opening another new hawker centers.

Some of these new hawker centers already have empty stalls in less than 2 years of operations. 

And consider more older generation hawkers are giving up their stall in the near future due to old age, increasing costs of operations and no successors for their business.

No pint having more hawker centers with empty stalls. 

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Supersonic

Attended the Punggol Town Hub ground breaking recently and these are the hawker centres by 2027

 

By 2027 ..... :wacko:

 

From now till 2027, peoples staying near Punggol Town Hub have to wait 9 years ...  :ph34r:

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Hypersonic

Hawker Centre need marketing meh? I don't see chomp chomp or blk85 or Changi v need any marketing.

 

These hawkers also went through tough times lah. Just that nowadays the rental will weed out many of them before the survivors actually honed their craft. 

If u watched the ch 8 show, many of the well known stalls inside them also survived few years of just eking by.

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