SNA Finalizes 2019-20 Legislative Priorities
Saturday, October 20, 2018
Heading into the 2019-2020 legislative session, the SNA-WI government affairs team has worked with SNA-WI leadership and the Legislative Committee to identify and determine potential legislative priorities for the upcoming session.
The SNA-WI Legislative Committee discussed priorities with the government affairs team on May 17, 2018. Since that time, the government affairs team has been working on strategies, as well as meeting with the Governor’s budget staff, DPI staff and lawmakers to discuss priorities for next session. After an initial discussion and first round of meetings, it became evident SNA-WI will focus on three priorities for the 2019-2020 legislative session:
Fully fund the School Breakfast Program.
· Justification: This was SNA-WI’s top priority from last session and we made great progress into achieving this goal. State Superintendent of Public Instruction Dr. Tony Evers has indicated his agency budget will fully fund the program. SNA-WI will collaborate with other stakeholders (such as the Wisconsin Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics) to build support with lawmakers in the Assembly and Senate, as well as the Governor’s office.
Preserve and expand the Farm-to-School Program.
· Justification: SNA-WI worked with other stakeholders to preserve this program in the 2017-2019 state budget. While we are proud we successfully restored this program once again, we would like to not only preserve this valuable program, but also work to expand its outreach. Having a larger Farm-to-School footprint will only help farmers find another market for their products and will provide schools with the chance to provide healthy, locally-sourced products in school cafeterias.
Fully fund the Wisconsin School Day Milk Program.
· Justification: Funding for this program has failed to keep up and it creates a stress on food service budgets in schools. Dr. Evers has indicated he will fully fund the program in his agency budget, and SNA-WI recognizes there will be plenty of opportunity to create awareness of the program and need for full funding. This is another priority SNA-WI can identify other interested stakeholders in which to collaborate. It will also help farmers find another market for the milk they produce.
While these issues will be SNA-WI’s top priorities for the 2019-2020 legislative session, the government affairs team also recognizes issues will arise (positive and negative) that will impact our professional arena. We may also join coalitions on certain issues and register an official position on legislation with the Wisconsin Ethics Commission.