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Legislative Update – October 2016

Erin Ducker, Vice President

Legislative Update – October 2016

 

H.R. 5003 - Improving Child Nutrition and Education Act of 2016

This bill amends the Richard B. Russel National School Lunch Act and the Child Nutrition Act of 1966 to reauthorize and modify child nutrition programs, including the National School Lunch Program, and the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC).

Policy Changes for child nutrition programs will:

  • require Department of Agriculture (DOA) review of school meal regulations
  • increase reimbursement rates for the School Breakfast Program
  • increase eligibility for participation in Community Eligibility Provision that allows schools in high-poverty areas to serve free meals for all students
  • permit states to serve summer meals away from a congregate site in low-income areas without access to summer service
  • revise application verification requirements for school meal programs

Policy Changes for WIC will:

  • authorize appropriations at the current level for the next five years
  • allow commercial availability and participant demand to be considered when amending the list of supplemental foods
  • modify the bidding process for infant formula and food

Introduced in House 4/20/2016

Latest Action: Ordered to be Reported in the Nature of a Substitute by the Yeas and Nays: 20 - 14

Action by: House Education and the Workforce (5/18/16)

Bill can be followed at www.congress.gov.

 

 

USDA Commits $56 Million for Local and Community Food Projects and Research

Agriculture Secretary, Tom Vilsack, announced more than $56 million in grants to provide funding for local and regional food systems, farmers markets, and organic research. The announcement was made on September 28, 2016 at the New York Times Food for Tomorrow Conference. “This latest round of grants will expand the capacity of farmers and businesses to serve this growing market, help revitalize local economies around the country, and support efforts around the country to provide fresh, healthy food to all Americans,” stated Vilsack. Funding will be distributed as shown below:

 

  • $26 million in grants for Farmers Market and Local Food Promotion Program
  • $21.4 million for Extension Program grants and Organic Research
  • $8.6 million in grants for Community Food Projects that will help to make nutritious food available to low-income populations

 

Source: www.usda.gov 

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