Tuesday Morning - May 29, 2018

An Update on Federal and State Policy Issues
from SNA

Table of Contents

Federal Policy

SNA Launches Stop the Block Coalition
U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee Approves $20M for SBP Commodities and More
USDA Issues Request for Comments on Reporting and Recordkeeping
State Agencies: CACFP Meal Service Training Grant

State Snapshots

MA SNA Advocates for Sensible Unpaid Meal Policy
Missouri Unpaid Meals Bill Referred to Committee
Rhode Island Food Advertising Bill Passes

Mark Your Calendars

SNA's Upcoming Webinars
USDA Summer Meals Webinars
Institute of Child Nutrition Webinar

Cafeteria Chat Corner


Federal Policy

SNA Launches Stop the Block Coalition

SNA announces the launch of the #Stoptheblock Coalition and website, an effort with partner organizations to oppose any attempts to block grant school nutrition programs. To learn more about the coalition, or the harm that block grants would inflict, visit stopblockgrantsnow.org.

Organizations interested in joining the coalition can reach out to SNA Government Affairs Associate, Matt Miller at mmiller@schoolnutrition.org. Individuals are encouraged to join the fight by sending a letter to their legislators, sharing the #StoptheBlock FAQs and infographic on social media, and continuing local education efforts on the detrimental nature of block granting school nutrition programs.

U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee Approves $20M for SBP Commodities and More

The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee approved the FY2019 Agriculture Appropriations bill on Thursday, May 24th with a unanimous roll call vote. As with the recently passed U.S. House Appropriations bill, SNA was also successful in getting a number of its legislative priorities included in this Senate version. While both the House and Senate bills still have a number of steps to go, SNA is excited to see potential additional funding and program simplification gain ground.

The Senate bill includes $20 million for School Breakfast Program commodities. It also requires that no funds may be used to implement Target 2 sodium levels, and appropriates $30,000,000 for competitive grants to State agencies for subgrants to local educational agencies and schools to purchase equipment.

The committee report that accompanied the bill contained two provisions supported by SNA. The first encourages the Secretary of Agriculture to return to a 5-year Administrative Review inspection cycle for schools found to be consistently complying with Federal regulations. The second encourages USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service to simplify the whole grain waiver process to make it faster and more user-friendly for SFAs.

USDA Issues Request for Comments on Reporting and Recordkeeping

In a Federal Register Notice published on May 23, 2018, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) announced that it is seeking comment on a revision of their currently approved information collection for the administration of the School Breakfast Program. FNS is inviting comment on the necessity and utility of the program’s reporting and record keeping requirements, the accuracy of their time burden estimates, ways to minimize reporting and recordkeeping burdens, and ways to enhance the quality of the information collected. Comments may be submitted through regulations.gov and must be received on or before July 23, 2018.

State Agencies: CACFP Meal Service Training Grant

State agencies that administer the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) are eligible to receive $100,000 in grant funding to support meal service training activities. Learn more about this funding opportunity by visiting the Team Nutrition webpage, viewing the recorded FY 2018 CACFP Meal Service Training Grants for State Agencies webinar, or visiting Grant.gov.

State Snapshots

MA SNA Advocates for Sensible Unpaid Meal Policy

Like many active SNA state affiliates, the School Nutrition Association of Massachusetts has been a consistent advocate for school nutrition programs in their state legislature. That’s why when a stakeholder call was convened to discuss a Massachusetts unpaid meal policy bill, Maria Hall, Nutrition and Legislative Chair for the SNA of MA, was invited to the table.

While SNA believes all children require equal access to nutritious school meals through universal meal programs, many state unpaid meals bills require the service of a reimbursable meal without additional funding.

“The most important thing you can do to is to educate both the legislators and the general public on the specifics of the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) as well as the financial management. If they understand how it works, they will be more receptive to your input and recommendations for revisions to these bills,” advises Maria. “Be sure to work with them to help them understand the regulations and limitations of providing meals at no cost.”

As a result of these education efforts, and after a hearing in the Massachusetts Senate, the bill was referred to a study order, requiring more research before moving forward.

Missouri Unpaid Meals Bill Referred to Committee

Missouri House Bill 1939, among other provisions, requires the service of a reimbursable meal to a student who requests one regardless of the status of an unpaid meal account. The bill was referred to the Elementary and Secondary Education Committee.

Rhode Island Food Advertising Bill Passes

Rhode Island Senate bill , S2350, would prohibit the advertising of any food or beverage that does not meet USDA’s minimum nutrition standards under the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. The bill passed the Rhode Island Senate on May 2nd and the House on May 23rd.

Mark Your Calendars

SNA's Upcoming Webinars

Learn about hot topics in school nutrition and earn Continuing Education Units with SNA’s popular professional development webinars.

Register Now:

Best of #LAC18: Procurement Ethics - What Should You Do?
Wednesday, May 30, 2018, 2:00 pm ET
Ethics play a major role in procurement, and procurement ethics are critical to your school nutrition operation. Don’t miss this opportunity to learn all about this crucial topic as part of SNA’s new programming, “School Nutrition Ethics: What Should You Do?”
Successful completion of the webinar and quiz is awarded 1 SNA CEU, or 1 CPEU for RDs/DTRs.

Best of #LAC18: Mastering Forecasting through Cycle Menus
Wednesday, June 20, 2018, 2:00 pm ET
Join this webinar to learn more about effectively planning your cycle menus to ensure cost effective use of your entitlement and commercially purchased food products. 
Successful completion of the webinar and quiz is awarded 1 SNA CEU, or 1 CPEU for RDs/DTRs.

USDA Foods in Schools Webinars

USDA is hosting a series of Summer Meals Program webinars.

Regional Offices and State Agencies
Thursday, June 21, 2018, 1:00 pm EST
Registration links will be sent directly from USDA Food and Nutrition Services to Regional Offices and State Agencies.

The USDA Foods Processing Rule: A General Overview
Thursday, June 28, 2018, 1:00 pm EST
A review of the changes to the new USDA Foods processing regulations. This webinar is targeted for USDA Foods processors, brokers, distributors and school districts. FNS Regional Offices and USDA Foods in Schools State Distributing Agencies are welcome to attend.

Institute of Child Nutrition Webinar

ICN is providing a webinar on menu planning for school meals.

The In’s and Out’s of Menu Planning for School Meals

Thursday, May 31, 2018, 3:00 pm EST
Join these two interactive Q&A discussions to learn from school nutrition directors who have implemented community eligibility with ISPs under 60 percent and have maintained the financial integrity of their program.




Cafeteria Chat Corner

“Let us never forget that government is ourselves and not an alien power over us. The ultimate rulers of our democracy are not a President and senators and congressmen and government officials, but the voters of this country.”
–Franklin D. Roosevelt was the 32nd president of the United States and founder of the New Deal, which provided the first federal aid for school meals.


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