Rep. Brindisi was in Binghamton on Monday (September 16), where he addressed a recent proposal by New York City officials to roll back the availability of flavored milk in New York City schools.
Flavored milk ban
Brindisi joined dairy farmers and local elected officials to call on New York City and schools across the country to protect nutrition in student lunches, along with the dairy jobs supported by flavored milk, like those in Upstate NY.
According to Brindisi, data shows that more than two-thirds of milk served in school is flavored and is essential to kids getting the nutrients they need for healthy growth and development.
Research also finds that children who drink flavored milk consume more nutrients of concern like calcium, vitamin D, and potassium compared to non-flavored milk drinkers.
“Banning flavored milk hurts our kids and our hardworking farmers,” Brindisi said. “The data shows that banning flavored milk results in less nutrients for kids, more waste in our lunchrooms, and fewer jobs for our dairy workers. I am calling on the Mayor and New York City to reject a ban of flavored milk in schools so that our kids can continue to get the nutrients they need from milk—in whatever flavor they like.”
Extending VA programs
Additionally, Rep. Brindisi also recently joined Republican Congressman Mike Bost to introduce the Department of Veterans Affairs Expiring Authorities Act of 2019, a bipartisan piece of legislation that will extend key VA programs and ensure benefits are not interrupted for America’s Veterans.
A member of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, Brindisi’s bill would preserve critical programs like reimbursements and allowances for transportation for highly-rural Veterans.
It would also extend the travel payments for highly-rural Veterans who have to travel long distances to receive care.
“Our Veterans defended our country and earned these benefits,” Brindisi said. “Our rural Veterans sometimes need to travel long distances to receive care and they shouldn’t be forced to foot the bill. Washington needs to do right by all of our Veterans and make sure there is no interruption in services for them or their families.”
Brindisi’s legislation would make technical corrections to VA statute and extend the following programs:
- A two-year extension of authority to fund financial assistance for supportive services for very low-income Veteran families in permanent housing (authorizes appropriations at $380 million)
- A one-year extension of VA’s authority to temporarily expand payments and allowances for beneficiary travel in connection with Veterans receiving care from vet centers
- A one-year extension of VA’s authority relating to vendee loans
- A one-year extension of VA’s authority to operate a regional office in the Philippines