URGENT ACTION ALERT!
COMMUNITY FOOD SECURITY ACT IMPLEMENTATION IN JEOPARDY
CONTACT USDA SECRETARY GLICKMAN AND YOUR CONGRESSMAN TODAY.
Thursday, June 27, 1996 WHAT'S HAPPENING:
The USDA has just shifted responsibility for administering the Assistance for
Community Food Projects program ( the Community Food Security Act),
threatening the viability and integrity of the entire program.
The program was being coordinated through the Office of Analysis and
Evaluation (OAE) of Food and Consumer Services, which had developed an RFP
(Request for Proposals) set for release Monday July 1. This week, Secretary
Glickman removed the program from the oversight of OAE and turned it over to
Research, Education and Extension's Cooperative State Research and Extension
Under this new action, CSRES has been assigned to rewrite the RFP. In
addition, provisions for grants for outside groups to conduct training and
technical assistance may be dropped, and USDA may try to do it themselves,
despite their admitted lack of knowledge on community food security.
why THIS STINKS:
* This jeopardizes the issuance of the RFP for FY 1996. With so little time
left for USDA to issue an RFP, allow time for proposals to be written, review
proposals, make awards, and obligate funds by Sept. 30th, any glitch that
holds up the process could kill it for lack of time. It would take weeks to
rewrite and approve a new RFP.
* There is no reason to believe that CSRES is familiar at all with community
food security and the types of grants and projects that should be encouraged.
* This maneuver may be designed to favor pet projects. The new guidelines
may eliminate eligibility for consideration of many worthy projects you and
others are working on, and favor certain types of initiatives that violate
the intent of the legislation.
WHAT YOU NEED TO DO WITHOUT DELAY.
With only a couple of days before Congress goes on recess and with the new
RFP due in 4 days, we must act IMMEDIATELY to protect our hard earned
Call or fax Secretary Dan Glickman TODAY to express your concerns that the
program be implemented swiftly and in accordance with the Act's legislative
intent. Important: cc a letter as well as your congressional representative.
BULLETS FOR FAXES OR CALLS TO GLICKMAN, CONGRESS
* Urge USDA to keep the same RFP developed by OAE, and to expedite the
release of the RFP. This will ensure that the intent of the legislation is
maintained as well as that a program does indeed occur this year.
* Urge USDA to fund community food security programs, as the legislation is
* Let them know about all the efforts your organizations and countless others
have made over the past year and a half to get this legislation passed.
* Mention how important this program is, not only for your organization, but
for the issues it will address and the opportunities it offers;
* Let them know that you are contacting your member of Congress to express
your concern over this process;
* Ask USDA to retain training and technical assistance grants, considered
essential to the effectiveness of the program.
Secretary Dan Glickman: House switchboard: 202-225-3121
Tel: 202- 720-3631
Additional CFS Coalition phone numbers:
Mark Winne: 203-296-9325
Hugh Joseph 617-232-6666