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Tuesday Morning April 29, 2008

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April 29, 2008

 

Table of Contents

Farm Bill Negotiations Continue
Impact of Rising Food Prices
Preparations Continue for Child Nutrition Reauthorization 2009
Celebrate Child Nutrition Employee Appreciation Week!
State Legislative Highlights
High Fructose Corn Syrup and School Wellness Webinar
FSIS Sponsoring Food Safety Summit
 

In Every Issue

Legislative Action Center
Legislative Toolkit
PR Toolkit
State Policy Index
State and Federal Legislation
2007 - 2008 Public Policy and Legislative Committee Contacts

 

Farm Bill Negotiations Continue

Lawmakers from both the House and the Senate continued to meet this week in negotiations over the Farm Bill.  On Thursday, Congress authorized another one week extension, with conferees optimistic that they are close to clearing the bill by next week. Despite his desire for a one year extension of the bill, President Bush signed the extension.  Late on Friday, news reports indicated that the conference committee reached a tentative agreement on key provisions within the bill.  The committee agreed to increase funding for nutrition programs to $10.36 billion.  A significant portion of the increase will be paid using Section 32 funds.  Legislators also tentatively agreed on a framework to pay for increases included in the bill.  While some conferees do not consider this a deal, the agreement allows the conference committee to move forward with finalizing the bill. Legislators are optimistic that the Farm Bill could be completed by May 8th.

Impact of Rising Food Prices

foodThe increasing price of food and it’s affect on school nutrition programs continued to make front page news this week.  Newspapers and television stations across the country discussed how school districts from St. Louis, Mo., and Portland, Maine to Kingman, Ariz. and Tampa, Fla., are feeling the pinch of rising food prices.  School nutrition directors in many communities are asking the local school board to increase prices for paying students.  School nutrition directors nationwide are doing the best they can to cope with the rising prices while providing the most nutritious, healthy, and balanced meal possible. To help communicate the issue,SNA has added additional resources to a web page linked from the front page of www.schoolnutrition.org including a PowerPoint presentation that can be customized and used to present the food cost issue to school boards, as well additional talking points on the topic. For article highlights and more, please see Related Links.

Preparations Continue for Child Nutrition Reauthorization 2009

USDA announced the first listening session on child nutrition reauthorization last week.  It will be held in Boston, Mass. on June 10, 2008. Listening sessions are being planned in the other USDA regions and dates/locations will be announced soon. At SNA’s National Leadership Conference last week several breakout sessions were held on Child Nutrition Reauthorization 2009, giving state association leaders another opportunity to provide input on SNA’s reauthorization priorities. Resources were also added to the SNA Reauthorization website including a brief PowerPoint presentation that can be used by state association leaders to introduce the 2009 Reauthorization process to their members. See Related Links to learn more.

Celebrate Child Nutrition Employee Appreciation Week!

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Caring. Trained. Thoughtful. Professional. Dedicated. These are just a few words that describe today's child nutrition professional. For the School Nutrition Association, every day is Child Nutrition Employee Appreciation Day, but it doesn't hurt to set aside some time to celebrate just how special child nutrition employees are. That's why the School Nutrition Association has designated one week a year to remind everyone -- directors, managers, parents, teacher, school administrators -- that child nutrition employees work hard year round. And of course, to let these professionals know you're thinking of them. States nationwide are celebrating the week - including the Nutmeg State of Connecticut where SNA of Connecticut worked with Governor Jodi Rell to have May 5, 2008, declared School Nutrition Employee Appreciation Day. Next week is Child Nutrition Employee Appreciation Week.  For ideas and suggestions on how to make this week special, please visit Related Links.

Global Child Nutrition Month Draws to a Close

Over $3,000 was raised by Wayne Township Schools in Indiana, over $1,000 by schools in Warren, Michigan. Events in Chesapeake, Virginia and Palatine, Illinois, promise to raise even more funds. As Global Child Nutrition Month draws to a close, the spirit of generosity and charitable giving was proven very much alive and well as student, teachers and school nutrition professionals alike all raised money for the Global Child Nutrition Foundation. To learn more see Related Links.

State Legislative Highlights

School breakfast became the latest victim of recent economic troubles as Florida legislators amended a bill that would expand the program to more students.  The original legislation (HB 623, SB 1458) would have mandated that schools with a high percentage of free and reduced students provide universal free breakfast by 2010.  The state Senate Education Pre-K – 12 Appropriations Committee instead amended the bill to require school districts to decide if they will offer universal free breakfast by 2010.  Also eliminated from the original legislation was a plan to increase student participation in school breakfast programs.

Last week, Louisiana joined several other states in attempting to ban the use of trans fats in the school nutrition programs.  The legislation, HB 1261 would prohibit all schools from serving students food containing trans fat, starting in the 2009-2010 school year.  Illinois, Tennessee, and Virginia also introduced trans fat legislation this year.  After passing the state Senate, the Virginia bill failed to make it passed the state House.  The Illinois legislation also passed the state Senate and is now being considered in the state House. For additional information on state legislation, please visit the State and Federal Legislation Link below.

High Fructose Corn Syrup and School Wellness Webinar

Don’t forget to mark you calendars!  SNA and the International Food Information Council (IFIC) will be hosting a webinar this Friday, May 2nd on high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) and school nutrition operations.  Learn about the facts and myths surrounding HFCS consumption in this free webinar.  To register, please see Related Links.

FSIS Sponsoring Food Safety Summit

The U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service is sponsoring a Health and Food Safety Summit May 15, 2008 in St. Louis, Mo.  The Summit, held in conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration, will focus on how to better improve communications during food-borne outbreaks.  During the public meeting on May 15th, local, state, and federal public health agencies, as well as consumer groups and industry partners are invited to share their perspectives on how to better coordinate during an outbreak of illness. For additional information about the Summit, please visit Related Links.

 

SNA Legislative Action Center

Legislative Toolkit

PR Toolkit

State Policy Index

State and Federal Legislation

State legislation can now be accessed on the Internet through Netscan. Use Username: schoolnutrition and Password: sna

Click State Legislation Instructions for steps to access state legislation through the service. Legislatures currently in session include:  Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont, Wisconsin, and District of Columbia.

2007 - 2008 Public Policy and Legislative Committee Contacts

Craig Weidel

PPL Committee Chair

clweidel@mpsaz.org

Cindy Brooks

Northeast Region

CBrooks@seymourschools.org

Sara Gasiorowski

Mideast Region

Sara.Gasiorowski@wayne.k12.in.us

Annette Bomar Hopgood

Southeast Region

awhopgood@bellsouth.net

Cindy Hormel

Midwest Region

chormel@liberty.k12.mo.us

Melanie Konarik

Southwest Region

melaniek@springisd.org  

Lyman Graham,

West Region

lyman.graham@carlsbad.k12.nm.us

Lincoln Pierce

Northwest Region

lpierce@bethelsd.org

School Nutrition Association

Child Nutrition and Policy Center

epeterson@schoolnutrition.org 


 
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