Health inspectors' full restaurant inspection reports will soon be available online for Santa Clara County restaurants.
The county Board of Supervisors approved a plan to improve restaurant inspections data online during a meeting earlier this week, according to a press release.
Currently, anyone can search for a restaurant within the county using the Food Facility Inspections Search Engine tool at the county website, but according to the release, "the online summaries do not adequately describe those cases where restaurants were found to be in violation of the Health and Safety Code."
Under this new plan, staff will transcribe the inspector's hand-written report into the database that will display online. The department has plans to develop a computerized field inspection program, which is expected to take a year, according to the county.
Over the next year, the county plans to transcribe up to 18,000 restaurant inspection reports and post them online, costing about $35,000.
Some supervisors raised concerns about the lack of transparency available in the current reports and said this new plan was a step in the right direction, according to the press release.
“Both the fact that a violation occurred and the detailed information about the specific violations need to be available online," said Supervisor Joe Simitian, District 5.
“The suggestions that staff have brought are a really good first start, an improvement over what is now in place,” said Supervisor Mike Wasserman, District 1. “At the end of the day we want to make it easier for the public to look up the data and evaluate which restaurants have a better health and safety record.”
According to county staff, the computer upgrade is expected to start in June 2013.
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