Schwarzenegger Plans Conference To Address Obesity in California
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) is planning a summit conference with researchers, business leaders and medical experts to establish a plan to address obesity among California residents, according to aides to the governor, the Sacramento Bee reports (Sanders, Sacramento Bee, 4/18).
As part of his state budget plan, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) in January proposed providing $6 million for the California Obesity Initiative, a new project that has received support from some health experts and criticism from others, who say more funding is needed to address obesity in California (California Healthline, 1/13).
In addition, California legislators have proposed several obesity-related measures, including bills to:
- Increase cigarette taxes by $1 per pack and use $500 million of the revenue each year for obesity, nutrition, physical activity or related programs;
- Set standards for nutrition instruction in public schools;
Ban soda sales in high schools, except for extracurricular activities; and
- Require food served in public schools to meet nutrition standards, restrict portion sizes of food sold a la carte and set calorie limits for items sold in campus vending machines.
Sen. Deborah Ortiz (D-Sacramento) said it is unclear whether the bills will be approved this year. She said, "I think the Schwarzenegger administration coming in, being identified with fitness, certainly has given people a sense that they have an opportunity with him," adding, "And I believe we do" (Sacramento Bee, 4/18). This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.