WESTFIELD, NJ — A Japanese restaurant called in front of the board of health to answer for repeat health code violations has since passed inspection.

Health Officer Megan Avallone reported that after Nagoya Japanese Restaurant’s board hearing for repeated health inspection failures resulting from improper hand washing and food storage, among other violations, the establishment passed an inspection.

“When we did go back in for our repeat inspection, they were satisfactory,” Avallone told the board of health on Monday. “This is the first time in a year they were able to obtain a satisfactory.”

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The owners’ son, who had translated for them during their hearing in front of the board of health last month, explained to his parents the severity of the violations, Avallone said.

“Hopefully, that will be enough motivation and encouragement on their end to keep the satisfactory rating,” she said.

Still, the health department has its eyes on Nagoya, the health officer said. “We’re definitely going to keep a close eye on them,” Avallone said. “Certainly, we’re going to be inspecting them more frequently.”

While three inspections yielding less than a satisfactory rating will mandate a restaurant appear for a hearing in front of the board of health, Avallone said, it is within her discretion to bring the restaurant back for a hearing sooner.

“If the conditions are really, really poor then we’ll bring them in right away,” Avallone said.

Board of health members also discussed what would be involved in publicizing restaurant health inspection ratings.

Noting the strain that COVID-19 has put on her staff, however, Avallone said the health department does not have the resources to do that during the pandemic.

“Down the road, if we wanted to look into making these ratings online for all the communities, I’m always an advocate for that,” she said.

Email Matt Kadosh at [email protected] | Twitter: @MattKadosh

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