Tuesday Morning - June 16, 2020

An Update on Federal and State Policy Issues
from SNA

Table of Contents

COVID-19 Policy Updates

USDA Announces Nationwide Nutrition Waiver Extensions
Take Action: Request that Congress Support Waiver Extensions
Team Nutrition Releases Tip Sheets on Serving Multiple Meals During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Federal Policy

USDA Issues Correction to Coronavirus Food Assistance Program Notice USDA Expands Access to Online Food Purchase Program

State Snapshots

Colorado Food Pantry Assistance Grant Program
Iowa Creates Local Farm Produce Program
New Jersey Introduces Bill to Designate “COVID-19 Heroes Day”
New York Proposes Bill to Purchase Food Products for Emergency Food Providers

Mark Your Calendars

School Nutrition Association Webinars

Mystery Chat Corner

COVID-19 Policy Updates

USDA Announces Nationwide Nutrition Waiver Extensions

On June 10, 2020, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture (USDA) Sonny Perdue announced the extension of 6 nationwide waivers for child nutrition programs.

  • Nationwide Area Eligibility Waiver allows program operators to locate Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) and Seamless Summer Option (SSO) open sites in areas that do not meet area eligibility requirements (effective until August 31st, 2020). 
  • Meal Pattern Flexibility Waiver (effective until July 31st, 2020) allows for state level waiving of the meal pattern requirements across all child nutrition programs in a targeted and justified approach.
  • Waivers allowing State agencies to waive onsite monitoring and oversight requirements for the school meals programs, the Child and Adult Care Food Program and the Summer Food Service Program have been extended through July 31.

SNA continues to advocate for the immediate extension of emergency feeding waivers through the end of School Year 2020/2021 and urges Congress to provide much needed funding to cover costs associated with COVID-19. You can help make our voices heard by writing to your legislators on SNA’s Action Network.

Take Action: Request that Congress Support Waiver Extensions

We need your voices to be heard now more than ever!  Please contact your U.S. Senators and Representatives asking them to follow up with USDA on the SNA letter to Secretary Perdue which was sent to all Members of Congress. Urge Congress to request that USDA extend all COVID-19 waivers throughout the next school year and provide school meals to all students at no charge. Take action now on SNA’s Action Network.

Team Nutrition Releases Tip Sheets on Serving Multiple Meals During the COVID-19 Pandemic

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Team Nutrition has created several tip sheets for school meal program operators on buying, managing bulk food items and protocol for distributing multiple meals at a time. These tip sheets cover three different school meal programs, including the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP), Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) and Seamless Summer Option of the National School Lunch Program (NSLP).  

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Federal Policy

USDA Issues Correction to Coronavirus Food Assistance Program Notice

On June 12th, USDA issued a correction to the Federal Register notice Funding Availability; Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) Additional Commodities Request for Information. The CFAP is a program to assist agricultural producers that have been impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak, and this correction clarifies specific rules regarding specialty crops. In addition, the program establishes provisions for direct payments to producers of eligible commodities to help offset sales losses and increased marketing costs.  All comments must be received by June 22, 2020.

USDA Expands Access to Online Food Purchase Program                                                                              

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced approval of requests from Mississippi, Delaware, Georgia, Iowa and the U.S. Virgin Islands to provide online purchasing of food to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) households. This approval will allow these states to expedite the implementation of online purchasing with currently authorized SNAP online retailers with a target start date to be announced at a later time. For a complete list of states where SNAP online purchasing is operational, click here.

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State Snapshots

Colorado Food Pantry Assistance Grant Program

HB 1422 creates the Food Pantry Assistance Program (grant program) to aid Colorado food pantries and food banks in purchasing foods to provide meals to food insecure areas, which has expanded significantly as the COVID-19 public health emergency continues.

Iowa Creates Local Farm Produce Program

HF 2645 creates the Local Farm Produce Program and provides funding to assist schools and districts with the purchasing of fresh farm produce for school meal programs.

New Jersey Introduces Bill to Designate “COVID-19 Heroes Day”

SJR 82 designates March 9th of each year as “COVID-19 Heroes Day” in New Jersey, to honor all those essential employees and food service workers that continue to provide meals and feed those in need during the pandemic.

New York Proposes Bill to Purchase Food Products for Emergency Food Providers

S 8504 provides funding for food banks, emergency food providers and participating organizations to purchase food products from New York farmers and processors for distribution to those areas experiencing hunger or food insecurity.

Mark Your Calendars

School Nutrition Association Webinars

Learn about hot topics in school nutrition and earn Continuing Education Units (CEUs) with SNA’s popular professional development webinars. If you missed a particular webinar, catch up with SNA’s on-demand webinars.

Motivating Yourself and Your Team: Tips to Inspire Success During Uncertain Times
June 18, 2020 3:00 PMET
Staying motivated can be difficult during the best of times and requires even more focus when unexpected events happen. As school nutrition professionals plan for schools to reopen, employees motivated to deliver exceptional service are key to adapting to a new norm. In this webinar, we'll explore how to focus on motivating ourselves first and how this impacts our team. It will help each attendee learn what they can do to inspire lasting success.

Mystery Chat Corner

On this day (June 16th) in 1858, which newly nominated senatorial candidate addressed the Illinois Republican Convention in Springfield and warned that the nation faces a crisis that could destroy the Union?
A: Abraham Lincoln

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