In his latest rant, the Post's Steve Cuozzo criticizes the practices of the Department of Health, or as he calls it, "the Ministry of Mouse-Dropping Enforcement." Inspired by the news that Per Se racked up 42 violation points on a recent inspection, Cuozzo points out that the Department of Health employs "19 times more inspectors proportionately for restaurants than the Department of Buildings does for buildings." Cuozzo also notes that Per Se is " immaculately clean by any English-language definition," and that the "grade pending" sign probably won't stop the restaurant's fans from dining there. Cuozzo's theory:
Once a mere bureaucratic apparatus to alert customers to "evidence of flies," the inspection fraud mushroomed under Bloomberg into a municipal ATM, reeling in $45 million in fines in a single year.Cuozzo also points out several examples of how the DOH's regulations go against common sense. As noted earlier this week, Per Se plans to appeal their DOH grade at an upcoming hearing.
That it occasionally harpoons a marquee name like Per Se fosters the myth of a democratic, level-playing-field methodology which spares not even the most renowned restaurant. You're safe eating out, folks! Your health Nazis are on the case!
· City's Restaurant Grades all About Fines — Not Health [NYP]
· New York's Finest Restaurant Has a 'Grade Pending' [~ENY~]
[Per Se by Krieger]