School breakfast bill revived on Utah’s Capitol Hill

Politics

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) – A school breakfast bill that was dead just a few days ago has new life today.

Supporters united over the weekend and now the bill is moving forward.

House Bill 222 authorizes federal funds to expand the school breakfast program to more schools in Utah.

“Never say never, and never really discount the power of constituent phone calls and making sure, you know, our policymakers are held accountable,” said Utahns Against Hunger Ex. Director Gina Cornia.

The bill failed in the Senate Economic Development and Workforce Services Committee just last Thursday.

Monday, it passed that very same committee on a unanimous vote.

“Social media and the press that it got in the media, just in you know traditional media, really turned this around,” said Cornia.

Senator David Hinkins was one of the no votes last week. He admits he got an earful.

“I wanted to be able to let the school superintendents, the school boards locally decide, but then I caught all kinds of hell over it,” said Hinkins, (R) Orangeville.

The senator said the committee doesn’t typically take up education bills and it boils down to a misunderstanding. After hearing from teachers he sponsored an amendment that was added to the bill.

“So, it will actually get more kids more opportunities to have meals for breakfast and for lunch,” said Hinkins.

Senator Lyle Hillyard is sponsoring the bill on the Senator floor.

He’s confident it’s now on the right track to address a problem students all across the state deal with.

“They don’t have breakfast, some of them don’t even have lunch or dinner, they are kind of scrounging for it and I think it’s important we, as a state, step up and help those children,” said Hillyard, (R) Logan.

The bill still needs to be approved by the full Senate.

The House will also need to approve the changes made to it.

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Glen Mills

Chief Political Correspondent

 Glen is honored to be delivering the news of the day every weeknight at 5, 6, and 10 in his home state. He is an award-winning veteran journalist, who joined the ABC4 News team as a weekend anchor in June 2013. Over the years, he held various positions at the station as he worked his way up to the main anchor chair. He also serves as our Senior Political Correspondent and hosts Inside Utah Politics, which airs every Sunday. The Utah Headliners Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists has recognized Glen as the best government and military television reporter in the state. Before returning home to Utah, he spent 11 1/2 years developing his journalism skills in other states. He held various on-air and management positions at KPVI in Pocatello, Idaho, WGBA in Green Bay, Wisconsin, and KKCO in Grand Junction, Colorado during that time. Read More...