House passes $4.5B child nutrition bill

Dec. 2, 2010 at 3:50 PM
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WASHINGTON, Dec. 2 (UPI) -- The U.S. House of Representatives passed a $4.5 billion child nutrition bill on a 264-157 vote Thursday, sending the bill on to President Barack Obama.

Among other things, the bill would expand the school breakfast and lunch programs and would change nutritional standards for school cafeterias and vending machines, key to first lady Michelle Obama's anti-obesity campaign.

Because the Senate unanimously passed the bill in August, the bill can go to Obama for consideration upon House passage.

Funding would be offset by future cuts in the food stamp program.

House Democrats had hoped to pass the $4.5 billion legislation Wednesday, but Republicans offered a so-called "poison pill" motion that would require criminal background checks for childcare workers and would remove the federal mandate for subsidized meals in schools, The Hill reported. Democrats pulled the child nutrition bill when they saw the amendment was headed for passage, a Democratic aide said.

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