Update on Anti-Hunger Programs in Senate Budget

Senate Budget Proposal

The Senate Majority Caucus Supplemental Budget proposal was released yesterday afternoon at a news conference. Here’s how the AHNC Priorities fared in this budget:

Program

AHNC Request Amount

Senate Budget
Proposed Amount

Emergency Food Assistance Program (EFAP)

$1 million

$800,000 added dollars

Farmers Market Nutrition Program (FMNP)

$500,000

$0*

State Food Assistance (SFA)

$1.367 million

$0

Breakfast After the Bell

$101,000
(fiscal note for the bill)

$0

* There is a $200,000 allocation to direct farm marketing that may have been meant to FMNP; folks are checking on this now.

 

Issue Updates 

Emergency Food Assistance Program (EFAP):

It was great to see funding for EFAP included in the proposed Senate Budget.  Food Lifeline issued an alert on the $1 m EFAP funding request.

Action: Click here to respond to the alert and then send it to your networks.  It’s a simple way to thank Senators for including funding in their budget and also send messages to Representatives about the need for added EFAP funding in their budget.

 

Farmers Market Nutrition Program (FMNP):

The WA Sustainable Food and Farming Network is sending out alerts asking members to call the 18 Senators that sit on Ways and Means and have not yet signed onto the FMNP letter. Same for the 19 Representatives on Appropriations that haven’t yet signed. Legislator sign-on letters have been submitted to leadership in both houses.

Action: Check the House and Senate letters and if your legislator hasn’t signed, please ask them to sign on.  And if they have signed, please thank them!

 

Breakfast After the Bell:

The Breakfast After the Bell bill (HB 2536) was passed by the House with a vote of 67 to 31 last Tuesday. The bill now goes to the Senate Early Learning & K-12 Education Committee, which had approved a version of the bill several weeks ago. So far, no hearing or vote on the bill has been scheduled, but there is still time! We will continue to monitor and send out updates.

 

State Food Assistance (SFA):

The Children’s Alliance developed a revised budget request for State Food Assistance last week, based upon budget realities and the anticipated impact of the Farm Bill “heat and eat” cut on 1/3 of WA households receiving Basic Food or SFA. The revised budget request is $1.367 m to begin 100% SFA benefits January 1, 2015. The change reduces the cost in the Supplemental but continues to position SFA to be fully funded in the 2015-17 biennium.

Action: Please contact your members in either House, particularly those who sit the Appropriations and Ways and Means Committees. We still have our online message open so click here to send a message as well.

We are also asking folks to submit Letters to the Editor in targeted media outlets around the state. Click here for information on the LTE campaign.

We will be in touch soon with information on the House budgets which is rumored to be released and heard tomorrow (Wednesday).