State cuts Value Motel fines due to financial woes

first_imgThe state Department of Labor & Industries is giving the Value Motel a break on its fines due to the business’ reported financial hardships — the owner says he made only $3,100 profit over a 30-month period.A hearings officer reduced the $7,500 in health and safety fines to $3,000 and put the motel on a monthly payment plan to pay off the penalties.The state imposed the fines after a health inspector and a safety inspector with the Division of Occupational Safety and Health conducted an inspection of the motel on June 1. The safety report included four “serious” violations totaling $1,500. The health report included eight serious violations totaling $6,000.The reduction came after Haresh “Harry” Patel, who leases and operates the motel, appealed the state’s fines last month. In his appeal letter to the state, Patel asked the state to reduce the fines since he took steps to immediately correct the violations and due to the economic hardship the fines would impose on the motel.“The travel and lodging industry was one of the hardest hit by the economic downtown as many were quick to cut non-necessaries such as travel and leisure,” Patel wrote. “Our hotel has seen a sharp decline in business which has made it hard for us to meet our operational obligations. … Also, the payment of a $6,000 penalty may detract from the funds available to improve our facilities for guests and employees.”last_img read more