The Cerro Gordo County Department of Public Health conducts hotel/motel inspections in Cerro Gordo County every year. Each facility is inspected for health-related issues including room inspections, bathrooms, and outside and inside facilities including the lobby, halls, storerooms, closets, and housekeeping rooms. The inspections identify deficiencies and require compliance when necessary.


Tattoo Parlor

The department conducts inspections in tattoo establishments in Cerro Gordo County. Inspections are conducted to protect the public from diseases that may be transmitted from one person to another through unsanitary or unsafe conditions. People who get tattoos and their future contacts are at risk for HIV, Hepatitis B and C, other bloodborne pathogens, and infections if proper procedures are not in place.

During inspections, inspectors check sterilization equipment and records, facility and equipment sanitation and condition, artist procedures and sanitary measures that are used during the tattooing procedure, facility records, and after-care instruction and education.

The tattoo operators are charged an inspection fee. The fee for a tattoo establishment inspection is $250.

More information about tattoo regulations, applications, and licensed artists and establishments can be found at the Iowa Department of Public Health website.


Swimming Pools & Spas

The Cerro Gordo County Department of Public Health contracts with the Iowa Department of Public Health to conduct inspections in Cerro Gordo County. The inspections are conducted for public swimming pools and spas at hotels, municipal facilities, fitness centers, apartment complexes, and other publicly used pools and spas. Inspections are conducted to protect the public from recreational water illnesses, swimming accidents, and drowning.

Inspectors check pool records and signage, personnel certifications, water chemistry and sanitation, pool design, maintenance and construction, safety procedures, and equipment.

Swimming pool and spa operators are charged a fee for the inspection. The fee is based on the type and size of the pool or spa.

More information can be found at the Iowa Department of Public Health.



In any given two-week period, 85% of all Americans will eat at least one meal outside the home. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), foodborne illness causes 48 million sicknesses; 128,000 hospitalizations; and 3,000 deaths each year.

Our Environmental Health professionals inspect over 350 food establishments in Cerro Gordo County. They conduct two to three inspections per year for most food operations in Cerro Gordo County.

Our inspectors look at the physical conditions of the establishment as well as the food handling practices of the employees. In addition, our department investigates food service complaints and conducts food sanitation training. Licenses are required for all food establishments and are available by calling 641-421-9336. How does your favorite restaurant rate? Review the inspections.

Types of Violations

During an inspection, inspectors verify that the food establishment is in compliance with the applicable rules and regulations pertaining to the type of license they possess. For example, inspectors make sure that food is cooked hot enough, cold food is kept cold enough, adequate handwashing takes place, proper cleaning is maintained, and many other critical factors that are important to serving safe food. The inspection report will indicate whether the establishment is in compliance (IN) or out of compliance (OUT) with the requirement. Additional comments on the inspection report will indicate whether the specific requirements were not observed (NO) by the inspector or not applicable (NA) to the licensed food establishment.


To report any complaints against a facility, write to:
The Iowa Department of Public Health, Bureau of Radiological Health
401 SW 7th St. #D
Des Moines, IA 50309-4611
Phone: 515-725-0306




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Contact Us

2570 4th St SW, Suite 1
Mason City, IA 50401
(641) 421-9300
Toll-Free: 1 (888) 264-2581
Available 24/7 to report health emergencies
(641) 450-0895