From the NY Post:
Supermarkets socked with $380,000 in fines five months ago for violating city regulations haven't learned their lesson: A new blitz by Department of Consumer Affairs inspectors found the compliance rate actually went down from 48 to 33 percent after the penalties were issued, officials said yesterday.
More shockingly, Consumer Affairs Commissioner Jonathan Mintz said that based on the experience of its inspectors, New Yorkers can expect to get ripped off one of out every three times they pass through the supermarket check-out counter.
In a sweep over the last four months, inspectors visited 408 supermarkets -- 83 of them twice -- and issued almost 750 new violations totaling $310,000 for infractions that included inaccurate checkout scanners, no prices on individual items, taxing merchandise that's not taxable and not having produce scales available to customers.
Inspectors have now issued $690,000 in fines since August.
But, as Mintz put it, "The real story is the overcharging."
He said his inspectors would typically pick 25 or 50 items off supermarket shelves -- about 20 percent on sale -- and run them through the register.
In nearly a third of the cases, Mintz said, inspectors were overbilled for at least one item -- a rate he described as "appalling."
Overall, only 33 percent of city supermarkets are in compliance with all city regulations.
During a previous sweep in August, the compliance rate was 48 percent -- a record low at the time.
In other supermarket news, Douglaston will be getting a Fairway soon.