Resurrected bill to be brought up for vote

February 24, 2014 by Whitney Burdette

A bill initially voted down by the Senate Health and Human Resources Committee has received second life and will be brought up for a vote tomorrow.

Senate Bill 628 would create the Healthy Children and Healthy Communities Act. The legislation calls on local and county government entities and agencies to provide a framework to help community residents lead healthier lifestyles. This includes the possible construction of walking and biking trails, the use of school buildings during the evenings for fitness classes and other initiatives.

However, the bill failed to pass through the committee last week. Sen. Bob Plymale, D-Wayne, said he thinks the bill is unnecessary because many communities already are implementing programs without the help of the Legislature. A motion to pass the bill on to the full Senate was rejected 4-6.

But the committee met again for about three minutes the next day to reconsider the bill. Sen. Mike Hall, R-Putnam, said he initially voted against passing the bill to the full Senate, but had a change of heart.

“It’s something I thought for a long time we should look at,” Hall said.

The bill was reconsidered and passed unanimously.

A similar bill, The Move to Improve Act, also will be brought up for a vote. Senate Bill 455 is the second phase of the Feed to Achieve Act that passed the Legislature last year.

Move to Improve requires students to engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity in the classroom each day, in addition to physical education and recess.

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