Sacramento – AB 1502 authored, by Assemblymember Tony Thurmond, (D- Richmond) increases access to free and reduced lunches for students. The bill was signed by Governor Brown Friday.
One of the biggest barriers to identifying and enrolling all low-income students is filling out the necessary paperwork if they are not identified through their participation in other programs for low-income Californians. The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 established Direct Certification (DC) percentage benchmarks for states to meet, which is 95 percent. Currently, California’s DC match rate is at approximately 63 percent. This bill provides the California Department of Education (CDE) the flexibility to expand DC giving more kids the food they need without requiring time-consuming paperwork.
“I would like to thank Governor Brown and my Legislative colleagues for supporting this bill,” said Assemblymember Thurmond. “Many kids that aren’t getting the access they deserve will now begin to get free and reduced lunches. This bill highlights what we are here to do in Sacramento help kids and families.”
This bill allows CDE to take an active role in the DC process by giving them the authority to conduct the match.
AB 1502 was fully supported by the Children’s Defense Fund- California and is sponsored by the Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tom Torlakson.
Assemblymember Tony Thurmond represents the 15th Assembly District, comprised of the cities of Albany, Berkeley, El Cerrito, El Sobrante, Emeryville, Hercules, Kensington, Piedmont, Pinole, Richmond, San Pablo, Tara Hills, and a portion of Oakland.