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Jan 10 2020 | 

Author: Teresa | 

Today, Governor Newsom released his proposed state budget for 2020-21, and we couldn’t be more excited about news of the substantial investment in California’s food banks. Alongside our member food banks and anti-hunger allies, we have successfully advocated for ongoing CalFood funding, support for higher enrollment in school meals, as well as State funds to support vulnerable community members who may potentially lose nutrition benefits. Unfortunately, our requests for disaster preparedness and response funding went unheard, and we will continue to push for funding through the Legislature.

Here are the numbers:

  • Emergency Food: $8 million for CalFood to support food banks' purchase of California-grown foods, and an additional one-time $20 million to support increased food purchases to partially mitigate the loss of CalFresh benefits to looming federal cuts.
  • Disaster Resilience: No investments were made to support food banks' disaster preparedness and response efforts. We will continue to seek the $32 million one-time request through the Legislature.
  • School Meals: $60 million to increase the state's portion of the school meal reimbursement rate. We will request that the funds be used to increase meal quality and participation in universal feeding options such as Community Eligibility. 
  • College Pantries: $11.4 million to establish or support food pantries at community college campuses. 
  • Waste Diversion: $15 million in Cap and Trade funds for CalRecycle to advance Waste Diversion, which should include Food Waste Prevention and Rescue Grants.
  • SSP: No investments. 

 

As 2020 kicks into gear, we remain committed as ever to upholding every Californian's right to nutritious food. With these investments from the CA State Budget, we look forward to continuing our work to promote and enhance the safety net, make produce and proteins more accessible to Californians statewide, and stand alongside our incredible network of 41 member food banks.

In spite of the unprecedented volume of federal threats and natural disasters, anti-hunger advocates are continually working to create a food-secure California. Onward!