Things started to heat back up in Lansing this week with lawmakers making their way back from a two-week long spring break. What is ahead of them from here until summer? Budget work is the number one issue on everyone's mind.
Let’s review the happenings from this first week back from break:
The House Education Committee took testimony on Senate Bill 139, which would allow for bake sale fundraisers in schools. Under current federal regulations, if items that are being sold are not within nutritional standards, they are not allowed to be sold. There are exceptions for items that are prepackaged like Boy Scout popcorn or Girl Scout cookies.
ACS CAN is a member of the Healthy Kids Healthy Michigan (HKHM) coalition that supports better nutritional standards, better health education classes and more activity for kids while at school. We joined HKHM in opposition of the legislation, since it would weaken the nutrition standards in schools, with the hope of seeing substantial changes to the legislation . We are looking forward to working with HKHM and others to change the bill moving forward.
The Senate were working on other issues this week that were tied in to Auto No-Fault reform.
The Senate Appropriations Committee started to move its budget bills this week. The Department of Community Health Budget is scheduled for action on Tuesday. The House has scheduled its appropriations committee for every day they are in Lansing this week (Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday). We will be watching the movements of the budget with this hurdle over and several more to go.
One federal note from our last notebook entrance. House Resolution 2 was passed by the Senate and was sent to the President for his signature. This is huge for us since it allowed for re-authorization of funding for Federally Qualified Health Centers until 2017. This is important because now the federal government will keep funding these centers that provide health care to those who are undeserved.
As always, if you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.