2019 Priority State Policy Initiatives
An important part of ending hunger in San Diego County is advocating for better policies statewide. Each year the San Diego Hunger Coalition and members of the Hunger Advocacy Network develop an advocacy agenda that protects and strengthens initiatives that support food security statewide. Below are the 5 bills and 2 budget requests that are a priority for the Hunger Advocacy Network in 2019.
Updated March 29, 2019
AB 341 (Maienschein) - CalHEERS applications for CalFresh This legislation would make it easier for hundreds of thousands of Californians applying for Medi-Cal using through the online CalHEERS application each year to simultaneously apply for CalFresh by allowing their Medi-Cal application to also qualify as their CalFresh/SNAP application through an opt-in opportunity on the CalHEERS online application.
3/20/2019 UPDATE: Referred to Committee on Appropriations.
AB 494 (Berman) - Shelter Expense Deduction: This legislation would simplify the verification of shelter expense deductions, as reported by CalFresh (SNAP) applications, necessary to determine a household’s CalFresh eligibility or benefit level. County agencies would be prohibited from requiring additional verification documentation unless reported shelter expenses are questionable. This bill would require the State Department of Social Services to issue guidance.
3/27/2019 UPDATE: Referred to Committee on Appropriations.
AB 842 (Limon/Eggman) - Hunger-Free Preschool: This legislation would ensure that all low-income low-income children in public pre-K have access to nutritious free or reduced-price meals. This legislation would authorize childcare and development programs to access funds made available through existing child nutrition programs (e.g. Child and Adult Care Food Program or CACFP).
3/4/2019 UPDATE: Referred to Committee on Education.
AB 614 (Eggman) – Food Bank Tax Credit: This legislation would expand existing tax credit laws to include the donation of qualified items defined as raw agriculture products or processed foods. It would also expand the definition of qualified tax payers eligible for the tax credit to include the person responsible for growing or raising a qualified donation item, or harvesting, packing, or processing a qualified donation item.
3/18/2019 UPDATE: In committee: Hearing for testimony only.
AB 1229 (Wicks) – End Foster Youth Student Hunger in California Act of 2019: This act would establish the Transition Age Foster Youth Meal Plan Program which will provide eligible transition-age foster youth pursuing a higher education degree at a public post-secondary educational institution with an award equal the the cost of a meal plan that would cover 10 meals per week and all campus fees. This program would be administered by the California Student Aid Commission. This act would also ensure that former foster youth are not denied CalFresh (SNAP) benefits because they have received transitional housing support and would establish an approval process for those who have chosen to participate in an off-campus internship that is not part of a federal or state approved work study.
3/11/2019 UPDATE: Referred to Human Services and Higher Education Committees.
CalFood Budget Request to provide $16.5 million to the CalFood program for food banks to purchase and distribute health California-grown food to communities in need. The current proposed budget provides only $8 million for this program, which places California second-to-last in aid provided to individuals through comparable programs in peer states. The additional $16.5 million would provide 100 million meals out of the state’s estimated 783 million missing meals (as reported by the CA Association of Food Banks). Fund from CalFood may only be used to purchase food produced in California.
Hunger Free Preschool budget request supports AB 842. The state can help build the capacity of our early care and education system to prevent hunger, break the cycle of poverty, and close the achievement gap by supporting policies and investments that increase access to meals for our youngest learners.
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