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Take Action Today – Support the Keep Kids Fed Act

June 23, 2022

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UPDATE 6/27/22

On Saturday, June 25, 2022, the President signed into law, the “Keep Kids Fed Act of 2022,” which extends certain flexibilities for child nutrition programs and provides temporary increases in reimbursement rates for school meals and meals provided in CACFP.
Thank you to Senators Debbie Stabenow and John Boozman and Representatives Bobby Scott and Virginia Foxx for their leadership and to all members of Congress who supported this legislation.

TAKE ACTION NOW to support increased reimbursement for CACFP and the extension of the area eligibility waiver for family childcare homes.

Call your Senators TODAY, then call your House Member and urge them to “Vote Yes” on Keep Kids Fed Act, which will provide much-needed relief to providers and families across the country. To easily connect with your Congressional delegation, call the Capitol Switchboard: 202-224-3121.

The Keep Kids Fed Act, H.R. 8150, introduced by Senate Agriculture Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and Ranking Member John Boozman (R-AR) and House Education and Labor Chairman Bobby Scott (D-VA) and Ranking Member Virginia Foxx (R-NC), is an important first step that would increase reimbursements to schools and childcare centers, support access to summer meals, allow children who are eligible to receive reduced-price school meals to receive free school meals, and streamline access to healthy meals for children in family childcare.

Provisions in The Keep Kids Fed Act

  • Extends the Area Eligibility waiver allowing family childcare homes to receive the higher Tier 1 reimbursements through the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP). Streamlines access to healthy meals for children in family childcare homes by extending the area eligibility test waiver. This year, one of the most pressing problems is that schools do not have the income data needed to establish area eligibility. In addition, this test is not an effective mechanism, it misses many providers serving low-income children, especially in rural and suburban areas.
  • Increases CACFP Reimbursements by 10 cents for each meal and snack for childcare providers and afterschool programs. This will help to stem participation declines, support good nutrition, and provide relief for struggling childcare to cope with supply chain and cost issues. These enhanced reimbursements will make it more affordable to provide the healthy foods required by CACFP. These healthy CACFP meals and snacks for young children in childcare are essential to supporting good health and development.
  • Extends USDA’s authority to issue Summer Nutrition waivers through September 30, 2022; meal pattern waivers through June 30, 2022, and non-cost nationwide waivers through school year 2022-2023.
  • Increases the school breakfast reimbursement by 15 cents and the school lunch reimbursement by 40 cents. Allows children eligible for reduced-price school meals to receive free school meals.
Background

The Senate is aiming to use a special process, Unanimous Consent, which requires all 100 Senators to allow a bill to move forward; one “nay” vote could derail the entire process. It is imperative that every Senator be urged to allow this bill to move forward due to the looming deadline of the child nutrition waivers (June 30, 2022). Once the Senate passes the bill, it will quickly move to the House of Representatives where the bill could also move by an expedited process known as “Suspension.”

To read the bill, check out Keep Kids Fed Act 2022.