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February 2, 2006

Task Force on Food, Farm and Nutrition Policy
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Assemblyman Jose Rivera Appointed Chair of Task Force on Food, Farm and Nutrition Policy

(Albany) - Speaker Sheldon Silver appointed Assemblyman Jose Rivera (D-Bronx), Chair of the Assembly's Task Force on Food, Farm and Nutrition Policy yesterday.

The Speaker asked Rivera to lead the Assembly's efforts to address the food and nutrition problems facing our State. The issues range from food assistance for struggling working families and seniors to nutrition-related health problems such as diabetes and obesity to food policy and economic development. Assemblyman Rivera looks forward to utilizing the Task Force to improve the affordability, accessibility, and quality of food available to residents of the 78th Assembly District in the Bronx and communities across New York State.

According to Mr. Rivera, "I plan to develop policies and programs to benefit consumers, nutrition and health programs, farmers and farmworkers, and small businesses in my community and around the State. We all appreciate good food but many families and seniors need assistance in obtaining a healthy diet, whether it's Food Stamps or community nutrition education programs. I plan to work together with my colleagues, with health and nutrition professionals, with anti-hunger and other advocates, and with labor and business to increase the consumption of high-quality, nutritious New York-produced foods that will benefit upstate farmers, downstate consumers, and workers and businesses everywhere."

In previous years the Task Force has successfully added millions of dollars in funds to the State budget for nutrition assistance programs, sponsored the child obesity prevention program law, the school breakfast expansion law, the farm-to-school law, the Spanish language pesticide applicator law, and a law to simplify the Food Stamp program application.

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