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Posted: March 13, 2014 10:00 p.m.

What the numbers mean for Thomas' Buffet

Dear Editor,

I would like to share my thoughts with you about the events of the last two weeks involving Thomas’ Country Buffet. I have over 15 years of experience working in restaurants and have survived many health inspections (both good and bad). My experience has taught me to never judge a health score by its cover. Points get deducted for the minutest details and in my opinion are sometimes downright ridiculous. If the kitchens in homes were subject to the guidelines a restaurant kitchen is held to, I believe the results would be astounding. My napkins are stored above food products, my sauces wind up on a shelf in the fridge below a package of meat, and my broom will definitely be kept beside my dust pan. All of these things would cause me to lose points on my health score if my kitchen were subjected to inspection. Oh, and don’t think for one moment that cooking would stop or food would be contaminated simply because we caught a mouse in a trap. In my home that is considered a successful trap- not a health violation.

Now that you have my thoughts on health scores I’d like to ask where our local media has been while a restaurant operated by locals and for locals of our community has fallen under attack by the WSB article? Why has this story not been followed up on to restore the reputation and livelihood of Thomas’ employees?

Thomas’ score sits at a bright and shiny 99 right now. If a reporter from Atlanta can put a restaurant in our hometown down for a fluke health score while never visiting the place, meeting the good-hearted staff, asking them in person why they received such a low score and reporting the changes made to skyrocket it to a 99 ... well, can’t we as a community do that for them? These people live, work, love and contribute in OUR hometown. I’d like to ask that The Covington News, OUR voice in OUR community, do a follow-up and help this restaurant and its employees as they educate themselves and create a future for Thomas’ Country Buffet.

Sincerely,

Tabitha Cooper

Newton County resident for 35 years and loyal customer of Thomas’ for two years.

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