January 19, 2005
Task Force on Food, Farm and Nutrition Policy
(518) 455-5203

Ortiz Hails New Childhood Obesity Funding
Proposed budget includes $1.5 million for new program

Assemblyman Felix Ortiz, (Brooklyn), Chair of the Task Force on Food, Farm and Nutrition Policy was pleased that the Governor included $1.5 million in new funding in his proposed budget for the Childhood Obesity Prevention Program.

"This may be the most important public health program of the 21st Century because we are facing a growing epidemic which not only kills people today but may overwhelm our State's health and financial resources in the coming years," said Ortiz. "I am pleased the Governor has recognized the need for action. This is good news for our State and especially our children."

The Program, sponsored by Assemblyman Ortiz, was signed into law late in 2003 but no specific appropriation was included in the 2004-05 budget. The Obesity Prevention Program would: develop media nutrition and physical activity promotion campaigns; implement school and community-based programs to improve nutrition and increase physical activity; coordinate obesity prevention strategies in government nutrition and recreation programs; sponsor conferences on solutions to childhood obesity; provide training to medical professionals; and, track the prevalence of the problem in the State.

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