OPPAGA text logo with graphic of FL historic capitol
OPPAGA text logo with graphic of FL historic capitol

Department of Business and Professional Regulation

Hotel and Restaurant Regulation

What is the purpose of the division?

The purpose of the Division of Hotels and Restaurants is to protect the health and safety of the public by providing the industry with quality inspections and fair regulation. The division licenses, inspects, and regulates public food service and lodging establishments in Florida. The division also licenses and regulates elevators, escalators, and other vertical conveyance devices.

How does the division protect the public interest?

To help ensure public safety, the division licenses public lodging, food service establishments, and elevators. The division conducts sanitation and safety inspections for food and lodging, and monitors statewide elevator inspection activities performed by private inspectors and those contracted by local governments.

How can a citizen obtain information about establishments regulated by the division?

The Department of Business and Professional Regulation established an electronic licensing system that allows access to license information on its licensing portal. The department also provides access to disciplinary activity reports on public food service establishments and restaurants on its website. Additionally, detailed lists of license and inspection data may be accessed through the department's Instant Public Records Page.

How many inspections is the division performing?

During Fiscal Year 2018-19, the division performed 163,320 inspections of 102,977 food service and public lodging establishments.

How quickly does the division process hotel and restaurant licenses and elevator operating certificates?

In Fiscal Year 2018-19, the division processed almost 100% of hotel licenses and restaurant licenses within 90 days, exceeding the legislative standard for both categories of licenses by almost 2%. The division also processed almost 100% of elevator certificates of operation within 90 days, also exceeding the legislative standard by almost 2%.

How are these activities funded?

Fiscal Year: 2020-21
Fund Dollars Positions


Staff Turnover. The division's new hire rate for division's food and lodging inspection staff decreased from 31.4% to 27.1% for existing positions in the in Fiscal Year 2019-20. Retention of existing staff is necessary to meet statutorily required food and lodging establishment inspections. To make hiring inspectors easier, the division lowered hiring requirements for the position. Instead of requiring a 4-year college degree in the physical or natural sciences, or a 4-year college degree with one year management experience, or five years of management experience, the position now requires a 2-year college degree in hospitality or culinary management or related fields.  Moreover, two years of industry experience can substitute for the college degree.

Where can I find related OPPAGA reports?

A complete list of related OPPAGA reports is available on our website.

Where can I get more information?

Other Reports
The Auditor General reports on department operations are available on its website.
Websites of Interest
Department of Business and Professional Regulation
Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association
Performance Information
Performance measures and standards for the department may be found in its Long Range Program Plan.

What are the applicable statutes?

Chapters 399 and 509 Florida Statutes.

Whom do I contact for help?

Division of Hotels and Restaurants, 850-487-1395