Tuesday Morning - December 1, 2020

An Update on Federal and State Policy Issues
from SNA

Table of Contents

COVID-19 Policy Updates

Commitment to Defeat the Virus and Keep America Healthy Act

Federal Policy

USDA Issues Proposed Rule to Restore School Meal Flexibilities
TAKE ACTION: Proposed Rule to Restore Flexibilities
Last Chance to Submit Nominations to SNA for USDA Political Appointees

State Snapshots

New Jersey Introduces "Farm Fresh School" Bill

Mark Your Calendars

Join Today’s FRAC Webinar
Congressional Management Foundation Webinar

Mystery Chat Corner

COVID-19 Policy Updates

Commitment to Defeat the Virus and Keep America Healthy Act

In November, U.S. Representative Richard Hudson (NC-8) introduced H.R. 14, the Commitment to Defeat the Virus and Keep America Healthy Act. This bill increases the Federal government's commitment to defeating COVID–19 and creates standards to prepare for future pandemics. Specifically, these standards include providing specialized services to overcome the risks associated with social isolation, such as additional resources from home-delivered meals and school nutrition programs.

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School nutrition staff at Old Hundred Elementary School in Midlothian, Virginia, excited to serve Thanksgiving meals to their students and staff.

Federal Policy

USDA Issues Proposed Rule to Restore School Meal Flexibilities

On November 25, 2020, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) released proposed regulations to restore flexibilities for milk, whole grain and sodium requirements in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and School Breakfast Program (SBP). This proposed rule maintains Target 1 sodium limits through the 2023-24 School Year (SY), states that Target 2 limits take effect in SY 2024-25, and the final target is eliminated. It also requires half of all grains served under NSLP/SBP to be whole grain-rich and allows the service of low-fat flavored milk.

USDA issued the proposed regulations following the April 13th federal district court ruling that vacated the 2018 Final Rule Child Nutrition Programs: Flexibilities for Milk, Whole Grains, and Sodium Requirements due to procedural issues. SNA urged USDA to restore the flexibilities to ease the burden on school meal programs.

Now is your time to take action! USDA has established a 30-day comment period for the proposed rule and “intends to issue a final rule in spring 2021 to ensure that stakeholders can continue to rely on the operational flexibilities proposed in this rule.” SNA is encouraging all school nutrition professionals to urge USDA to restore flexibilities by submitting your comments on the impact and importance of milk, whole grain and sodium flexibilities.

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TAKE ACTION: Proposed Rule to Restore Flexibilities

USDA FNS has announced proposed regulations to restore flexibilities for milk, whole grain and sodium requirements in the school meal programs. These proposed regulations were issued directly following the recission of flexibilities previously provided in 2018. Submit your comments urging USDA to restore flexibilities. TAKE ACTION!

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Last Chance to Submit Nominations to SNA for USDA Political Appointees

President-elect Joe Biden is currently appointing individuals to high-level positions at various departments and agencies – including the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). During past Administrations, SNA has participated in this process by suggesting names for appointed positions at USDA. As the Biden Administration continues to develop, SNA will again be putting forth candidates for consideration.

We would like SNA members to help identify these individuals who should be considered by the Biden Transition Team for appointed positions. Please check out the full announcement for more information on how to submit your application. Applications are due by December 4, 2020. Interested individuals should send their application and resume to Cathy Schuchart, SVP of Government Affairs and Media Relations, at cschuchart@schoolnutrition.org.

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State Snapshots

New Jersey Introduces "Farm Fresh School" Bill

A 5046 allows the New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture to declare any public school as a "New Jersey Farm Fresh School" if at least 20% of the food served comes from farm products grown and produced in New Jersey.

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Mark Your Calendars

Join Today’s FRAC Webinar

P-EBT 2.0
Tuesday, December 1, 2020, 3:00 PM ET
Congress has extended the Pandemic EBT through September 30, 2021 and made several program improvements. Join the Food Research & Action Center (FRAC) for a webinar with USDA to learn more about the recently released guidance and the next phase of Pandemic EBT. The webinar will focus on providing benefits to school-age children. The webinar is co-hosted by the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, the Education Trust, Feeding America, the Food Research & Action Center, and Share our Strength.

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Congressional Management Foundation Webinar

Freshmen Spotlight - How to Build Relationships with New Members of Congress
Tuesday, December 15, 2020, 1:00 pm ET
Many advocates woke up on November 4, 2020, to discover that their long-standing champions for their cause have been sent packing, causing a scramble to cultivate new Congressional proponents on the Hill. During this webinar, participants will explore what it is like to set up and work in a freshman Congressional office, what common mistakes advocates make when meeting new members, and how advocates can adjust their tactics when building relationships with new members. This webinar will be conducted by CMF's Brad Fitch, President & CEO, and Seth Turner, Director of Citizen Engagement.

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Mystery Chat Corner

On December 1, 1913, which company instituted the world's first moving assembly line to create the Model T Ford?
A: Ford Motor Company

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Contact Us

2900 S. Quincy Street, Suite 700
Arlington, VA 22206
servicecenter@schoolnutrition.org  

Tel (703) 824-3000
Fax (703) 824-3015

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