Stimulus dollars spent on anti-obesity campaign
A stimulus-funded anti-obesity campaign has spread throughout the country. And the $650 million Recovery Act program called Communities Putting Prevention to Work (CPPW) is funding not just anti-obesity campaigns in New York City, but campaigns throughout the country.
Thirty-one localities — from cities in Hawaii to Maine to South Carolina — have received grants to combat the effects of sugary drinks and trans fats on residents’ waistlines.
The state of California was by far the biggest beneficiary, receiving $55.1 million to do things like “reduce sugar-sweetened beverage consumption and promote healthy eating” and “implement physical education policies in schools.” Of that grant, $32.1 million went to Los Angeles, $16.1 million went to San Diego, and $6.9 million went to Santa Clara. Yet California is one of the country’s slimmest states.
Washington State received $25.5 million in taxpayer dollars to fight obesity. The grant went directly to the Seattle and King County Department of Public Health. However, according to Forbes rankings, Seattle is one of the top ten fittest cities in America. Nonetheless, in 2010, Seattle announced a campaign to reduce consumption of sugary drinks, modeled after “materials developed in New York City.”
The Philadelphia Department of Public Health received $25.4 million to “make healthy foods more available and affordable” and remove “unhealthy food” from schools.
Cook County and the City of Chicago in Illinois received $15.9 million and $11.6 million, respectively, to promote healthy living and anti-smoking campaigns.
Pima County in Arizona received $15.8 million. And in Texas, San Antonio got $15.6 million while the city of Austin, which is ranked as one of the fittest cities in America, got $7.5 million.
The affluent city of Boston, Massachusetts, where lawmakers are considering a ban on soft drinks, received $12.5 million in grants. In return, the city promised to decrease consumption of sugary beverages, increase active transit, and infuse more physical activity and health education into the school system. . . .