(a) Establishment; authorization of appropriations There is hereby authorized to be appropriated such sums as are necessary to enable the Secretary to carry out a program to assist the States and the Department of Defense through grants-in-aid and other means to initiate, maintain, or expand nonprofit breakfast programs in all schools which make application for assistance and agree to carry out a nonprofit breakfast program in accordance with this chapter. Appropriations and expenditures for this chapter shall be considered Health and Human Services functions for budget purposes rather than functions of Agriculture.
(b) Breakfast assistance payments to State educational agencies; calculation; national average payments for breakfasts, free breakfasts and reduced price breakfasts; maximum price for reduced cost breakfasts; minimum daily nutrition requirements criteria; additional payments for severe need schools; maximum severe need payments (1)(A)(i) The Secretary shall make breakfast assistance payments to each State educational agency each fiscal year, at such times as the Secretary may determine, from the sums appropriated for such purpose, in an amount equal to the product obtained by multiplying
(I) the number of breakfasts served during such fiscal year to children in schools in such States which participate in the school breakfast program under agreements with such State educational agency; by (II) the national average breakfast payment for free breakfasts, for reduced price breakfasts, or for breakfasts served to children not eligible for free or reduced price meals, as appropriate, as prescribed in clause (B) of this paragraph.
(ii) The agreements described in clause (i)(I) shall be permanent agreements that may be amended as necessary. Nothing in the preceding sentence shall be construed to limit the ability of the State educational agency to suspend or terminate any such agreement in accordance with regulations prescribed by the Secretary.
(B) The national average payment for each free breakfast shall be
57 cents (as adjusted pursuant to section 1759a(a) of this title).
The national average payment for each reduced price breakfast shall be one-half of the national average payment for each free breakfast, except that in no case shall the difference between the amount of the national average payment for a free breakfast and the national average payment for a reduced price breakfast exceed 30 cents. The national average payment for each breakfast served to a child not eligible for free or reduced price meals shall be 8.25 cents (as adjusted pursuant to section 1759a(a) of this title).
(C) No school which receives breakfast assistance payments under this section may charge a price of more than 30 cents for a reduced price breakfast.
(D) No breakfast assistance payment may be made under this subsection for any breakfast served by a school unless such breakfast consists of a combination of foods which meet the minimum nutritional requirements prescribed by the Secretary under subsection (e) of this section.
(E) Free and reduced price policy statement. - After the initial submission, a local education agency shall not be required to submit a free and reduced price policy statement to a State educational agency under this chapter unless there is a substantive change in the free and reduced price policy of the local education agency. A routine change in the policy of a local education agency, such as an annual adjustment of the income eligibility guidelines for free and reduced price meals, shall not be sufficient cause for requiring the local education agency to submit a policy statement.
(2)(A) The Secretary shall make additional payments for breakfasts served to children qualifying for a free or reduced price meal at schools that are in severe need.
(B) The maximum payment for each such free breakfast shall be the higher of -
(i) the national average payment established by the Secretary for free breakfasts plus 10 cents, or (ii) 45 cents (as adjusted pursuant to section 1759a(a)(3)(B) of this title).
(C) The maximum payment for each such reduced price breakfast shall be thirty cents less than the maximum payment for each free breakfast as determined under clause (B) of this paragraph.
(3) The Secretary shall increase by 6 cents the annually adjusted payment for each breakfast served under this chapter and section 1766 of this title. These funds shall be used to assist States, to the extent feasible, in improving the nutritional quality of the breakfasts.
(4) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, whenever stocks of agricultural commodities are acquired by the Secretary or the Commodity Credit Corporation and are not likely to be sold by the Secretary or the Commodity Credit Corporation or otherwise used in programs of commodity sale or distribution, the Secretary shall make such commodities available to school food authorities and eligible institutions serving breakfasts under this chapter in a quantity equal in value to not less than 3 cents for each breakfast served under this chapter and section 1766 of this title.
(5) Expenditures of funds from State and local sources for the maintenance of the breakfast program shall not be diminished as a result of funds or commodities received under paragraph (3) or (4).
(c) Disbursement of apportioned funds by State; preference for schools in poor economic areas, for students traveling long distances daily, and for schools for improvement of nutrition and dietary practices of children of working mothers and from low-income families Funds apportioned and paid to any State for the purpose of this section shall be disbursed by the State educational agency to schools selected by the State educational agency to assist such schools in operating a breakfast program and for the purpose of subsection (d) of this section. Disbursement to schools shall be made at such rates per meal or on such other basis as the Secretary shall prescribe. In selecting schools for participation, the State educational agency shall, to the extent practicable, give first consideration to those schools drawing attendance from areas in which poor economic conditions exist, to those schools in which a substantial proportion of the children enrolled must travel long distances daily, and to those schools in which there is a special need for improving the nutrition and dietary practices of children of working mothers and children from low-income families.
Breakfast assistance disbursements to schools under this section may be made in advance or by way of reimbursement in accordance with procedures prescribed by the Secretary.
(d) Severe Need Assistance.--
(1) In general.--Each State educational agency shall provide additional assistance to schools in severe need, which shall include only those schools (having a breakfast program or desiring to initiate a breakfast program) in which--
(A) during the most recent second preceding school year for which lunches were served, 40 percent or more of the lunches served to students at the school were served free or at a reduced price; or
(B) in the case of a school in which lunches were not served during the most recent second preceding school year, the Secretary otherwise determines that the requirements of subparagraph (A) would have been met.
(2) Additional assistance.--A school, on the submission of appropriate documentation about the need circumstances in that school and the eligibility of the school for additional assistance, shall be entitled to receive the meal reimbursement rate specified in subsection (b)(2).
(e) Nutritional requirements; service free or at reduced price; compliance assistance (1)(A) Breakfasts served by schools participating in the school breakfast program under this section shall consist of a combination of foods and shall meet the minimum nutritional requirements prescribed by the Secretary on the basis of tested nutritional research, except that the minimum nutritional requirements shall be measured by not less than the weekly average of the nutrient content of school breakfasts. Such breakfasts shall be served free or at a reduced price to children in school under the same terms and conditions as are set forth with respect to the service of lunches free or at a reduced price in section 1758 of this title.
(B) The Secretary shall provide through State educational agencies technical assistance and training, including technical assistance and training in the preparation of foods high in complex carbohydrates and lower-fat versions of foods commonly used in the school breakfast program established under this section, to schools participating in the school breakfast program to assist the schools in complying with the nutritional requirements prescribed by the Secretary pursuant to subparagraph (A) and in providing appropriate meals to children with medically certified special dietary needs.
(2) At the option of a local education agency, a student in a school under the authority that participates in the school breakfast program under this chapter may be allowed to refuse not more than one item of a breakfast that the student does not intend to consume. A refusal of an offered food item shall not affect the full charge to the student for a breakfast meeting the requirements of this section or the amount of payments made under this chapter to a school for the breakfast.
(Amended by P.L. 108-265.)