With some modifications to make things easier for nonprofits, Jackson County legislators on Monday approved new health inspection rules and fees.

With some modifications to make things easier for nonprofits, Jackson County legislators on Monday approved new health inspection rules and fees.

It’s the county’s first overhaul of fees for health-related permits in five years. They affect the entire county outside Independence and Kansas City, which have their own health departments and do their own food inspections.

A couple of legislators last week had raised concerns about how the rules might affect non-profits, so the county will ease the rules on proof of non-profit status. Also, instead of a $25 license per fundraiser, the $25 license will cover four events. The county had initially considered a $50 fee.

“Anything we can do in that capacity is a help,” said Legislator Theresa Garza Ruiz, D-Blue Springs.

The county inspects 800 food establishments – restaurants, grocery stores, schools, others – outside Independence and Kansas City. Raising the fees was intended to help close the $170,000 gap the county faces between what it collects and what it costs to conduct inspections. The new fees should cut that about in half.