Purchase Board of Health would like to see changes in restaurant grades

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Reporter - Elizabeth Fields
Photojournalist - Mason Watkins

MCCRACKEN COUNTY, Ky. - The Purchase District Board of Health wants to make a few minor changes to the restaurant inspection scoring system.

Currently, restaurants receive at least two unannounced health department inspections a year. They're evaluated on 38 categories related to food safety. 16 critical areas are also included like proper food temperatures, insect or rodent problems, ect. Then they are given a score out of 100.

Under the proposed policy those numbers would get a letter grade to correspond. Any restaurant that received a score 85-100 with no critical violations would get an "A" to display in their facility.

A "B" would be given to ALL facilities that have failed a follow-up inspection, have failed two consecutive inspections, or were closed during regular inspection because of health violations. The "B" remains until the next routine inspections. 

Restaurants that receive a  score of 84 or below or any restaurant that gets a critical violation will get a "C". The grade will remain for up to 10 days until a follow-up inspection can be completed.

Any facility receiving a 60 or below can be closed.

Jeff Parker, owner of City Rockers in Lone Oak said he's already transparent with his customers by allowing them to see workers prepare the pizza, so he would be happy to display his grade.

"The ones that are not okay with it, they probably don't need to be in business anyway," he said. "I won't eat there."

Health Department officials said the Board will meet in the end if May, and if passed, the policy would go into effect in August. It would apply to food service businesses in the districts five counties: Ballard, Carlise, Hickman, Fulton, and McCracken.

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