Congressman Rush Holt (D-N.J.) will be introducing the Farm to School Improvements Act of 2010 sometime this week. As part of the Child Nutrition Reauthorization Act, Holt proposes that $50 million be authorized over the next five years to fund Farm to School programs.
He introduced the bill the same week that Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack spoke at a National Press Club luncheon. In his speech he highlighted “the Obama administration's priorities for the reauthorization of the Child Nutrition Act” and advocated “for the rapid passage of a strong reauthorization bill to reduce hunger and improve the health and nutrition of our nation's children.”
Seems like with Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move campaign and the Obama administration’s commitment to the Child Nutrition Act, it’s the right time to introduce a bill like this.
But if you remember your School House Rock, introducing a bill is just the first step in a “long, long journey” of a bill becoming law.
The next step on this bill’s journey, according to Urban Farm Hub, is for it to get additional co-sponsors. This is where you and I can help. Call, fax, write, or e-mail your state representatives and let them know you support this bill and you would like them to co-sponsor it. You can go to Congress.org for easy access to your representatives’ contact information.
The Farm School Improvements Act will provide grants to
- develop vendor relationships with local farmers
- plan seasonal menus and promotional materials start a school garden,
- develop hands-on nutrition education to demonstrate the important interrelationship of nutrition and agriculture
- provide solutions to infrastructure problems like storage, transportation, food preparation, and technical training
I would love my sons’ school to be able to do those things, so I’ll be contacting my representatives. Won’t you join me?