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Environmental health sliding scale charging worst offenders

Comment 6th July 2010

Food premises inspected by environmental health should be charged a fee if they don't meet the highest standard. This should be on a sliding scale with the worst paying the largest fee. The most cleanly places pay nothing.  This could be based on the rating system now employed by many local authorities. Every repeat inspection required because recommended actions have not been done should require an increase in fee. The first inspection of a new business, or business under new management should be free.

Why does this matter?

No food business should really be able to complain about this as they should be clean and safe in the first place. The softly, softly approach isn't working. There are not enough environmental health inspectors to do a proper job.  There is no incentive for a food business to improve its cleanliness and safety. Hitting a business where it hurts, but not charging  those with best practise should drive up standards and also provide revenue to further protect the public. The public purse should not be used to shore up slack hygiene.

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