TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A new state law exempts child care centers fro kitchen inspections.
The newly renovated Early Head Start Center for low income children in Tallahassee is sitting empty because of the lack of government regulation.
The Center is funded with stimulus money which is meant to create jobs. Pam Davis, Executive Director of Kids, Inc. said the $1.1 million impact on the community is being lost because the federal government requires a working kitchen, and the state is no longer allowed to inspect child care center kitchens at all.
Pam Davis said, "In order to get the grant and provide the meals that meet two-thirds of a child's daily nutritional requirements, I have to have my kitchen inspected and there's no one to inspect it."
House Bill 5311 took effect July first. It prohibits the state Department of Health from inspecting not just this center, but all child care center kitchens in Florida, in both new and already operating centers. Davis said parents should be concerned.
When asked about the new law, a health departent spokesperson would only say the agency's job is to carry out the will of the legislature.