From the OC Politics Blog
UPDATE: Supervisor Todd Spitzer now says that he is going to ask the Supervisors to reconsider restaurant letter grade health ratings! Thank you Supervisor Spitzer!
Despite a warning from the county grand jury, the Orange County Board of Supervisors declined, back in December of 2008, to impose a letter grading system designed to inform would-be diners about the health safety record of restaurants, according to the L.A. Times.
Supervisor Janet Nguyen cast the key vote against the letter grading system for restaurants. I broke the news afterwards that O.C. Supervisor Janet Nguyen’s husband, Tom Bonikowski, owned a Lee’s Sandwiches franchise in Stanton that had been fined many times by the O.C. HCA. She never reported that when she voted against the letter grade ratings – and it blew up in the press. Bonikowski has since sold the restaurant.
“Sometime in April of 2012, nine customers at an Orange County restaurant got sick after eating lettuce laced with Escherichia coli, the deadly, dreaded bacterium better known as E. coli. The lettuce came from Amazing Coachella Inc. of Coachella, and their poisoned product also struck eaters in Canada, where the outbreak was a national story. The OC restaurant was the only other culprit; it closed for a couple of days, then opened, and that was that,” according to the OC Weekly.
Here’s the kicker – the Orange County Health Care Agency, which inspects restaurants and oversees food safety in Orange County, never “never revealed it to the public when the outbreak occurred, and it doesn’t want you to know about it—now or ever.”
I wonder if Supervisor Nguyen shut down the E. Coli report? Now that she has two little boys she needs to reconsider her vote against letter grade health ratings for O.C. Restaurants. Food poisoning is no fun for adults – but it can kill children.
How might our O.C. Supervisors vote today if they were to reconsider letter grade health ratings for our restaurants?
- Nguyen is a candidate for the 34th State Senate District. Surely she now wants to protect our children, even though in 2008 she voted not to?
- New Supervisor Todd Spitzer has built his career on public safety. Surely he would vote to approve letter grade health ratings for our area restaurants?
- Supervisor John Moorlach is talking about running for Governor of California. Surely he won’t vote against public health again?
- Supervisor Pat Bates is a candidate for the newly-formed 36th district. Surely she won’t vote against public health, will she?
- And Supervisor Shawn Nelson is a personal injury lawyer. Surely he knows how devastating food poisoning can be to consumers?
Now is the time for the Orange County Supervisors to try again – and this time I hope they will do the right thing and vote to inform the public when our local restaurants have bad health records.
Does this matter? You bet. Click here and prepare to be shocked by the poor health record of many of the eating establishments at Disneyland!
Click here to find out about problems at one of Downtown Santa Ana’s gourmet restaurants.
And click here to find out about the mess at many of Downtown Santa Ana’s newest restaurants and bars.
Click here to find out how to contact your Supervisors – and ask them to please vote for letter grade health ratings for O.C. restaurants!