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Official: Restaurant Inspections Will Improve

Louisiana's Office of Public Health is going statewide with a plan that officials say cut past-due restaurant and retail food inspections by at least one-third during a nine-parish pilot that began in February.

Assistant Secretary J.T. Lane said Thursday that he's making other changes to fix problems noted in a highly critical state audit released last month.

The audit said his office gave permits to restaurants that failed to correct violations and didn't meet its own standards — such as inspecting restaurants four times a year.

Lane says restaurants working with raw meat and produce will see inspectors four times a year.

He says a new scheduler will let inspectors easily see which inspections are needed first.

New programs start in January; Lane hopes to have them statewide by June.

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