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Little League pizza and hots sale halted by county for lack of permits

By Howard B. Owens

Report from our news partner 13WHAM about the County Health Department requiring Batavia Little League to acquire a health permit to sell pizza and hot dogs.

C. M. Barons

If one starts with the premise that food poisoning is no less virulent whether the food is served by a little league booster or a commercial establishment employee, one can address this question from a more reasonable standpoint. Perhaps the question is better framed as, "Should commercial food prep/servers pay the same fee as not-for-profit food/prep servers?" ...In which case I would suggest that the cost of an inspection and license be separate charges, commercial and non-profit both being charged a fee for inspection, and cost of a subsequent license be either reduced or deferred for non-profits. I would also suggest that food stands that do not involve food prep (food supplied by an outside, licensed vendor) be in a different category- if not already the case. As much as I sympathize with the cause, supporting youth athletics; I must also concede that I've been inside a number of these snack stands. There is (often) no provision for hand-washing or sanitation/cleaning, no running water. Some facilities are barely weather-tight and often home to mice and other wildlife. They are usually multi-purpose structures used to store lawnmowers and athletic equipment when not serving food. More significantly, they are often manned by people (sometimes minors) who may or may not have training in food safety. Whether any of the food service equipment, coffee-makers, popcorn machines, warming ovens or serving utensils are properly attended to is pure conjecture. I vote "yes" for inspection/permit, "no" for permit fee.

May 20, 2015, 2:10pm Permalink
Bob Price

Do they think they are special???? According to Channel 13,they are the only ones in county who haven't paid the "permit" fee,the other parks in Batavia have.Yes,it sucks to have to pay the fee,but if the food has been donated,what's the problem with paying the fee? Isn't it a NYS law that the county has to enforce??? Why the problem all of a sudden?

May 20, 2015, 2:25pm Permalink
Michael Peet

When i first heard about this on channel 2 last night i was shocked that the county would not let the little league sell pizza or hot dogs. Since the pizza & hot dogs is donated to them by a local restaurant maybe the restaurant owner can help them get the permits that they need.

May 20, 2015, 2:35pm Permalink
Raymond Richardson

Even though the food is cooked at a local restaurant, then donated to the little league to sell, they are still bound by Part 14, Subpart 14-1 of the health code.

Both the hot dogs and pizza are, or contain, PHFs which are strictly regulated by the Health Code, and hot holding, or reheating procedures must be followed.

I know it seems like a downer to the little league but it is what it is.

FYI, because of strict enforcement of the health code, the number of suspected food poisonings reported, in which the source is suspected to be from a restaurant or other licensed food service establishment, have greatly reduced over the years.

May 20, 2015, 4:25pm Permalink
Dave Olsen

"FYI, because of strict enforcement of the health code, the number of suspected food poisonings reported, in which the source is suspected to be from a restaurant or other licensed food service establishment, have greatly reduced over the years."

Do you have actual proof of this assertion or is just an assumption?

May 20, 2015, 5:06pm Permalink
Brian Graz

"it is what it is"... this is because there are so many citizens who are ready and willing to get in line, bend over and grab their ankles, whenever the government tyrants tell them to.
How about simply posting a sign that states that ***this concession stand does not comply with every stupid health department mandate, and no one to date has died from eating anything from this stand... so you decide whether to purchase any food here***

May 20, 2015, 11:16pm Permalink
Frank Bartholomew

I have played little league and was an asst coach, and at no time have I ever heard of anyone ever gettingt sick on the food frrom the concession stands.The pizza comes from local pizza shops who already have permits, wow, this county is getting seriously ridiculous.
And we wonder why people are leaving this area.The county hands fists full of our money to gcedc, and now they want to rob kids from an opportunity to play organized sports. What a bunch of bullies.

May 20, 2015, 11:38pm Permalink
John Roach

Brian, you suggest they publicly ignore the law. Ok, what laws or codes do you publicly refuse to obey. Do you walk the walk, or just talk?

May 21, 2015, 7:20am Permalink
Dave Olsen

The CDC tracks disease that originates at the source or a processor. This type of information would probably only be gathered at the local level. So, again is there any proof that the health dept's enforcement efforts have any effect on people's illnesses?

May 21, 2015, 9:13am Permalink
Raymond Richardson

"The CDC tracks disease that originates at the source or a processor."

As well as data of reported food borne illness from the secondary sources, which is received from the health department through reporting from medical providers as well.

FYI, you are more likely to get a food borne illness from food you make in your home than from a restaurant because not many people take necessary precautions to preventing contamination of their food through proper cleaning and sanitizing the surfaces they use for prepping their food, i.e. cutting boards, counter tops, etc.

May 21, 2015, 11:20am Permalink
Dave Olsen

I didn't see that info on the CDC website, but I really don't have the time or patience to wade through all the stuff on there.
The 2nd part of your comment proves the point. Issuing a $175 permit does not protect anyone except the county coffers. Brian has the best suggestion just require a big orange warning notice next to the window and let folks make their own decision and be done with this nanny nonsense3

May 21, 2015, 1:06pm Permalink
Brian Graz

Well, for starters John, let's talk about the fact that perhaps as many as 99% of NYS gun owners who have those guns that Fidel Cuomo has declared must be reported and registered, have refused to comply. This seems more and more what needs to be done if the citizens are going to resist the increasing government intrusion and abuse of Constitutional Liberty that is constantly under attack. Don't worry, you don't need to participate, it's always been a small part of society that accomplishes these fights.

May 21, 2015, 3:16pm Permalink
John Roach

The question Brian, was that since you suggested others not obey a law, which one will you disobey. Are you trying to say you have refused to register a gun? Are YOU taking a stand?

May 21, 2015, 3:58pm Permalink
Raymond Richardson

"The 2nd part of your comment proves the point. Issuing a $175 permit does not protect anyone "

No where in any of my comments to this thread have I stated anything like that.

Having a permit from the health department to serve food to the public is not a guarantee of protection to the public. It is; however, enforcing the health code, uniformly, for anyone who does serve food to the public, whether they are for-profit or non-profit.

NFN Dave, but churches that host fund raising dinners, are now required to have a permit, and at least one certified food manager during the prep, cooking, and service of the food. They can no longer serve family style, i.e. deliver large serving platters and bowls to be passed around the tables. The service has to be single service only. Used to be a day and time when members of a church would cook the food in their home kitchens and bring it to the church to be served to the public. Not anymore.

Many people can say what they will about the little league needing a permit, and accuse the county/state of money grabbing all they want, but this is nothing new, and has been enforced for many years. I know of several little leagues in other communities that have a concession stand, and must maintain a food service permit issued by the county.

It's really the only way to make sure the health code is being followed. It's not all just about food, but cleanliness and sanitizing of the food area, including storage, as well as the food handlers are properly handling the food, etc.

May 21, 2015, 6:00pm Permalink
Dave Olsen

By relating that one has a better chance of getting sick from food at home than you do elsewhere tells me that a health permit for a non-profit is a waste of money. Forcing a little league, a church group or anyone else to buy a permit does not insure that the food will be handled properly. Unless of course some health goon is going to stand over them the whole time. That will probably come about in a year or two, the permit will be 600 bucks and if you want to have a church dinner, everyone will have to bring a brown bag lunch. This is a case of government gone wild. Very classic example of the "liberal" or protector worldview. That worldview is predominate in NY State and Genesee County. All the so-called "conservatives" will take offense, I'm sure. People need to stand up to this malarkey or it will only get worse and worse. Its like a frog in a pot of water that is slowly being heated to boiling.

May 21, 2015, 9:37pm Permalink
Brian Graz

John are you asking questions you have no business asking? Are you a snitch, a secret agent, a deep-throat, or just writing a book about local people you go out of your way to disagree with and belitte regularly. If you are making allegations you best make sure you don't make any false ones.

May 21, 2015, 10:14pm Permalink
Brian Graz

Dave your insights and comments are a breath of fresh air in a cloud of smog here. You are smack on point with the statement "classic example of the "liberal" or protector worldview". I don't know whether to get angry, or feel sorry for all the sheople that have been suckered into embracing such a pathetic compliancy.

May 21, 2015, 10:30pm Permalink
John Roach

Brian, you suggested people break the law and not comply with the Health Department. I am just asking are you willing to say you are willing to do the same, and what law will you disobey. and if so, will you say it publically since you suggested they do it publically. It is easy to say what others what they should do, but not take a real stand yourself.

May 21, 2015, 10:33pm Permalink
Brian Graz

Your interrogation is indecorous, keep in mind, I don't answer to you... and besides I was never a very good ball player. Get my drift?

May 21, 2015, 11:50pm Permalink
Brian Graz

That's funny I still attend some functions where you bring a dish to pass, and what difference is there between that and serving family style? I guess it's just a matter of who is scarred into complying with the eating police. I'm sure you would like to know where... well just follow me around, I bet you can recruit John Roach to do it with you.

May 22, 2015, 12:06am Permalink
John Roach

Brian, that's OK. I was just wondering if you were all cheap talk. Like I said, it is easy to say what others should do, but not do yourself. Yep, I get your drift.

May 22, 2015, 5:53am Permalink
Ed Hartgrove

What's happened to thebatavian site?
As Bud Prevost mentioned, the up/down option on comments has disappeared.
Now, I notice that some (or, maybe all) of the "Reply to" option is "mis-numbering" which comments get replies matched to.

Example #1 - Some replies would appear to be attached to comments which haven't even been made yet.

Example #2 - Brian's comment #8 appears to be his 'Reply to' his own Comment #8. How is that even possible?

Also, when I logged on to ask this question, I was on the article about the Little League. When the system logged me on, I was magically transported to an article dated April 17, 2014 - 9:23am.

Just thought you might like to know.

May 22, 2015, 10:45am Permalink

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