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Archive for Monday, April 9, 2007

County may start restaurant inspections

Would take over responsibility from the state

April 9, 2007

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The Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department is considering a plan that would allow it to begin inspecting area restaurants for cleanliness and health-related issues.

Dan Partridge, health department director, told Douglas County commissioners this morning that he is considering an idea of creating a new food service inspection program. It would replace the system of state inspectors who regularly check Lawrence and Douglas County restaurants.

Partridge said several Kansas counties have signed contracts with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment to have local inspectors do the restaurant checks. He said he thought it could provide an improvement in service.

"I don't want it to sound like the state isn't doing a good job, but I think we can do it even better because we would have inspectors who are more tied into the local community," Partridge said. "They are here on a daily basis and live in the community."

Partridge said he thought the program could be self-supporting from a financial standpoint. He said inspection fees would continue to be set by the state. But the health department would receive 80 percent of the fee. The state would keep the remaining 20 percent to take care of the actual issuing of a license and to cover any enforcement expenses, such as taking an establishment to court.

Partridge said the idea still needs some further study before he's committed to moving ahead. He said local inspections likely wouldn't begin before 2008.

For more details on the story, and additional coverage of the County Commission, see tomorrow's Journal-World.

Comments

Dorothy Hoyt-Reed 7 years, 8 months ago

As long as they're replacing the state system. What would be the point otherwise, except for more government waste.

Bruce Bertsch 7 years, 8 months ago

This should send a chill down the back of many Lawrence food service establishments. Maybe cleanliness and food storage will actually be something that is taught and practiced.

riverrat2 7 years, 8 months ago

Too much chance for a conflict of interest being local. It just adds another position for KPER and county paid health insurance. This doesn't save any tax dollars does it? I really don't see any justification.

KsTwister 7 years, 8 months ago

My tax dollars go for inspections already ----So the way Lawrence does things ---if they set up for their "own" inspections then I won't ever, ever get taxed for the same bureaucratic manipulation and duplication? I smell a rat and its not in a kitchen. To me this would amount close to double taxation down the road, I just have to wait to see where the county says it needs more money for its budget. TOO MUCH RED TAPE, scrap this idea now. If the State is not doing a good enough job-PROVE IT.

FreetoBe47 7 years, 8 months ago

If the state is doing a good enough job then why would the county need to do the inspections? I have to agree with KS Twister I see a screwin- on the horizon!!!!

KsTwister 7 years, 8 months ago

This is so stupid, welcome to Lawrence, bend over.

Sigmund 7 years, 8 months ago

No this is stupid. I get to to pay the State to do inspections and they do such a poor job now I get to pay the County do it? Pick one agency and hold them accountable.

willie_wildcat 7 years, 8 months ago

I fully agree with KsTwister...this is nothing but a set up for a royal screw over by the city and county. I smell a rat!

KsTwister 7 years, 8 months ago

Did we not just have a stop the red tape elections in about the 80's. I think we are back to ' young or dumb' mentality.

yourworstnightmare 7 years, 8 months ago

I think they should inspect Buffalo Boob's to determine if that should really be called BBQ.

Michael Capra 7 years, 8 months ago

I hope they do it will be a great thing LETS GO TO THE MERC FIRST ITS BAD

Dorothy Hoyt-Reed 7 years, 8 months ago

This is Lawrence, it's Douglas County. Read the article.

pelliott 7 years, 8 months ago

to much chance of conflict of interest is right. They could set up yearly classes for employees and owners to teach better practices but a local inspector. Like an in house inspector in meat houses, etc. more easily pressured. BAD iDEA.

Sigmund 7 years, 8 months ago

"Partridge said he thought the program could be self-supporting from a financial standpoint."

"He said he thought it could provide an improvement in service."

Just what are Partridge's thoughts on what happens IF it isn't self supporting or doesn't provide an improvement in service, what then? Do we really want or need to grow local government? What is the REASON to change?

"I don't want it to sound like the state isn't doing a good job, but I think we can do it even better because we would have inspectors who are more tied into the local community," Partridge said."

If the State isn't doing a bad job then why do we need to increase the size and expense of local government? Even if we could do better, do we NEED to do better? Which governmental body is better able to deal with cost overruns and increased costs of administering the program, the State of Kansas or the City of Lawrence? Because Partridge THINKS we can do better job? Really, do we have a bunch of trained inspectors and the expertise to do this locally? This might make sense for KC or Wichita, but Lawrence? Come on.

It sounds as if KDHE is trying to offload the cost and expense some of their employees and put them on the City of Lawrence's payroll. I think not. I think Lawrence should strive to SHRINK local government, NOT GROW IT!

KsTwister 7 years, 8 months ago

I don't want 'local' inspectors, too many conflicts of interest can corrupt this scenario.

Anyone who hasn't sent a copy of this to your congressmen had better do so. I have and I think its time to take those decisions out of county and city hands,for good reasons. Its all about money,and that is always the bottom line.

With the current E coli and pet food scares you cannot tell me that changes like this will get quicker answers, because it can only delay them.

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