Dallas city officials for two years now have been using money intended for restaurant health inspections to cover budget shortfalls in other areas.
The Dallas Morning News reported about $1.36 million paid by restaurant owners to cover the costs of the inspections went elsewhere. That meant hundreds of restaurants didn’t get their mandatory twice-a-year inspections. The newspaper says more than 240 eating places went all year without an inspection.
City Manager Mary Suhm says the city’s budget crisis meant staffing cuts in the program. She also says even in better economic times, the fees paid by restaurant owners didn’t cover the cost of all inspections, meaning the city had to cover the difference.