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SB-782 School meals: state agriculture.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 06/21/2017 09:00 PM
SB782:v94#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  June 21, 2017
Amended  IN  Senate  May 26, 2017
Amended  IN  Senate  May 08, 2017
Amended  IN  Senate  May 01, 2017
Amended  IN  Senate  March 29, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill No. 782


Introduced by Senator Skinner
(Coauthor: Senator Stern)(Coauthor: Assembly Member Eggman)

February 17, 2017


An act to add Article 10 (commencing with Section 590) to Chapter 3 of Part 1 of Division 1 of, and to repeal Section 593 of, of the Food and Agricultural Code, relating to school meals.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 782, as amended, Skinner. School meals: California-grown food: grant program. state agriculture.
Existing law creates the Office of Farm to Fork in the Department of Food and Agriculture, and requires the office, to the extent resources are available, to work with the agricultural industry and various other entities to increase the amount of agricultural products available to underserved communities and schools in the state.
This bill would require the Department of Food and Agriculture and the State Department of Education to annually meet to discuss the intersection of state agriculture and school meals policy.

Existing law requires the State Department of Education to ensure that the nutrition levels of meals served to schoolage children pursuant to the federal National School Lunch Act be of the highest quality and greatest nutritional value possible.

This bill would establish the California-Grown Fresh School Meals Grant Program in the Department of Food and Agriculture for purposes of encouraging the purchase of California-grown food by schools and expanding the number of freshly prepared school meals offered within the state that use California-grown ingredients. The bill would require the Department of Food and Agriculture, in consultation with the State Department of Education, the State Department of Public Health, and key stakeholders relevant to school meals, agriculture, or health, to establish minimum standards, funding schedules, and procedures for awarding grants under the program to qualified entities, defined to include a school district, charter school, county office of education, or other entity approved by the State Department of Education that participates in the federal National School Lunch Program or the federal School Breakfast Program.

The bill would establish the California-Grown Fresh School Meals Account in the Department of Food and Agriculture Fund for the deposit of matching funds from public and private sources. The bill would make available, upon appropriation by the Legislature, the moneys in the account to the Department of Food and Agriculture to provide grants under the grant program, as specified. The bill would repeal the provisions related to the account as of January 1, 2025.

Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Article 10 (commencing with Section 590) is added to Chapter 3 of Part 1 of Division 1 of the Food and Agricultural Code, to read:
Article  10. The Intersection of State Agriculture and School Meals Policy

590.
 The Department of Food and Agriculture and the State Department of Education shall annually meet to discuss the intersection of state agriculture and school meals policy.

SECTION 1.

The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:

(a)The State of California should advance programs that promote a safe and healthy food supply, enhance the state agricultural economy, and ensure the health and well-being of all children. It is therefore of the utmost importance that school districts provide healthy and freshly prepared meals from food grown in California to public school children.

(b)The State of California participates in the federal National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and the federal School Breakfast Program (SBP), which are federal and state assisted meal programs that provide reimbursements to school districts for meals that meet nutrition standards served to eligible pupils for free or at a reduced price (FRP). The NSLP and SBP are administered by the State Department of Education, and recent data shows all of the following:

(1)Out of the six million pupils enrolled in California schools, more than one-half qualify for FRP meals.

(2)Seven hundred million breakfasts and lunches were prepared and served to pupils who qualify for FRP meals, with an average of 2.5 million meals served each day.

(3)The State Department of Education received a total of $2 billion in public funding as reimbursement for school breakfasts and lunches, including about $155,000,000 from the state.

(c)Various studies, including in the Journal of Health Economics, Journal of School Health, and Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, show that fresh and nutritious school meals increase the health and academic achievement of pupils, improve attendance rates, and have positive behavioral impacts that result in better classroom environments.

(d)Increasing the local and regional sourcing of agricultural products in school meals can benefit the environment by reducing greenhouse gas emissions associated with the extra transportation and packaging required for products procured out of state and from abroad.

(e)According to a California State University, Fresno, Center for Agricultural Business study, every $1 spent in the agriculture sector adds $2.56 to the state’s economy.

(f)It is in the best interest of the state to increase the amount of funding for school meals directed to the procurement of California-grown food, which will have positive impacts on the state’s agricultural economy, the health and academic achievement of schoolchildren, and the environment.

(g)The California-Grown Fresh School Meals Grant Program will improve the quality of school meals throughout the state.

SEC. 2.Article 10 (commencing with Section 590) is added to Chapter 3 of Part 1 of Division 1 of the Food and Agricultural Code, to read:
10.The California-Grown Fresh School Meals Grant Program
590.

For purposes of this article, the following definitions apply:

(a)“California-grown food” or “California-grown ingredients” means food or an agricultural product that has been produced in the state or harvested in the state’s surface waters or coastal waters.

(b)“Department” means the Department of Food and Agriculture.

(c)“Grant program” means the California-Grown Fresh School Meals Grant Program.

(d)“Qualified entity” means a school district, charter school, county office of education, or other entity approved by the State Department of Education that participates in the federal National School Lunch Program or the federal School Breakfast Program.

591.

(a)The California-Grown Fresh School Meals Grant Program is hereby established within the department for purposes of encouraging the purchase of California-grown food by schools and expanding the number of freshly prepared school meals offered within the state that use California-grown ingredients.

(b)The department shall coordinate with the State Department of Education and the State Department of Public Health to implement the grant program.

592.

The department shall administer the grant program in accordance with all of the following:

(a)The department shall establish minimum standards, funding schedules, and procedures for awarding grants in consultation with the State Department of Education, the State Department of Public Health, and key stakeholders relevant to school meals, agriculture, or health.

(b)The grant program shall provide grants to qualified entities for both of the following:

(1)The purchase of California-grown food to be used for school meals.

(2)Expanding the number of freshly prepared school meals offered by a qualified entity, including, but not limited to, the purchase of equipment or training for the offering of freshly prepared meals.

(c)The department may give priority in awarding grants to a qualified entity based on, but not limited to, any of the following:

(1)The rate or number of schoolchildren eligible for free or reduced-price meals served by the qualified entity.

(2)The degree to which the qualified entity does or will implement guidelines and professional development relating to food service.

(3)The degree to which the qualified entity proposes activities to encourage pupils to eat freshly prepared school meals, including, but not limited to, through taste testing or promotion.

(d)The department shall provide technical assistance to qualified entities as needed.

(e)The department shall promote opportunities for the establishment of public and private partnerships for resource and program partnering opportunities.

593.

(a)The California-Grown Fresh School Meals Account is hereby established in the Department of Food and Agriculture Fund for the deposit of matching funds from public and private sources.

(b)The moneys in the California-Grown Fresh School Meals Account shall be made available, upon appropriation by the Legislature, to the department to provide grants under the grant program.

(c)The department shall only provide grants from the California-Grown Fresh School Meals Account upon the deposit of sufficient matching funds, as determined by the secretary of the department, into the account.

(d)This section shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2025, and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute that is enacted before January 1, 2025, deletes or extends that date.