SHOW ME THE RECORDS: Restaurant inspections

Monday, August 30, 2010 | 12:01 a.m. CDT

You can learn a lot about your community, state and country. Open records help people keep government in check and help them better understand how government affects their lives.

Each week the Missourian will feature another open record. This week:

The records: Health Inspections for Columbia establishments. The Columbia Health Department inspects food establishments that serve or prepare food. The department classifies violations as critical or noncritical. Critical violations must be corrected at the time of the violation or within 10 days. They are more likely to contribute to food contamination, illness or environmental health hazard. Noncritical violations must be corrected by the next regular inspection. These inspections pose less risk.

Why you’d want them: To assess your health risk at local establishments.

Where you get the records: The inspection scores are online through, the city's website. Click on "Health and Human Services," then on "Health Department," then on "Food Safety" and then on "Restaurant Inspection Scores."

Cost:  Free.

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