The Louisiana Food Bank Association is asking lawmakers for $5 million dollars in state funds to assist with the purchase of food from farmers, fishermen, and vendors. Food banks have hit a wall with many grocers finding more efficient ways to keep food fresher longer and giving away less of their inventory.
The $5 million dollars would buy more than 2 million pounds of food. Historically the association has received state funding, but didn’t receive any funding for food last year.
A couple dozen residents and leaders of the association assembled on the steps of the state capitol Thursday to reach out to lawmakers.
Senator Francis Thompson said it will be tough for lawmakers to find funding.
“We’re going to fight for it like we always have. But we are not going to let that stop us or deter our efforts in anyway. If we cannot satisfy it with state and federal dollars we’ll make sure the private and enterprise system works," Thompson said.
An allocation of state funds would require an amendment to the state budget bill, which will be considered for the first time in the House Appropriations Committee Monday. The food banks have yet to identify a sponsor for their amendment. They likely have until the bill reaches the Senate floor to do so.