No one could have predicted that the Food Bank of Iowa would have trouble this summer getting adequate supplies to “a network of 280 organizations providing food to people in 42 counties.” Oh wait, everyone could have predicted that, because donations to food banks typically drop during the warm months, not only in Iowa but all over the country. Meanwhile, demand for food banks increases, particularly among families with hungry children not receiving free school lunches during the summer.
The $500,000 state appropriation to the Iowa Food Bank Association, which Governor Terry Branstad blocked, wouldn’t have entirely filled the gap for the Food Bank of Iowa and seven other food banks around the state, but it would have provided more supplies to an organization that is “starving for donations.” Nothing wrong with the governor encouraging private gifts to the Food Bank of Iowa, but the unmet need would be smaller with state funds added to the mix. UPDATE: Radio Iowa reports on shortages at the Omaha-based food bank that serves 16 Iowa counties. Federal funding cuts are an issue, which is all the more reason for state government to step up and help.