Mayor Bloomberg promised to speed up restaurant applications. The State Liquor Authority vowed to eliminate its own backlog of applications. And now it looks like the Department of Health is also trying to ease the burden on restaurateurs. According to a notice posted on the DOH’s website, those who’ve been fined can now agree to a settlement rather than have to wait in line to appear at a hearing. “To accept an offer,” the announcement explains, “a food service establishment must acknowledge that the violations alleged in the [Notice of Violation] existed at the time of the inspection. However, the penalties offered by the Agency to settle are generally lower than the penalties it recommends be imposed for the same violations if they are sustained at a hearing.” The Department will soon be accepting settlement agreements online and by mail.
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