Food Policy Council Members Appointed

In action taken at their June 6, 2012 meeting, Washtenaw County commissioners appointed 15 members to a new Washtenaw Food Policy Council, and passed amended bylaws. The board of commissioners had given final approval to create the council at its March 21, 2012 meeting.

Members appointed with one-year terms are: Bill Alt (faith-based organization); Amanda Edmonds (urban agriculture); Dena Jaffee (food service); Liz Dahl MacGregor (citizen); Nicole Miller (emergency food system); Lindsey Scalera (education); Dayle Wright (health care); and Patti Smith (human Services).

Members appointed to two-year terms are: Jenna Bacolor (Washtenaw County public health); Nicole Chardoul (Waste management); Gretchen Hofing (nutrition); Tim Redmond (food manufacturer and distributor); Michaelle Rehmann (economic development); Kenny Siler (rural agriculture). County commissioner Yousef Rabhi had previously been appointed by the board to a two-year term.

In a separate action, the board approved bylaws for the council [.pdf of food policy council bylaws]. Board chair Conan Smith clarified that the original bylaws did not clearly indicate what entity would be responsible for making these appointments. The amended bylaws indicate that the county board is responsible for appointing the policy council members.

The Washtenaw Food Policy Council aims to support local “small and mid-sized farmers by fostering policies that encourage local food purchasing and production,” according to a staff memo. Among other activities, the council could also: recommend policy changes at the local, state and national levels; provide a forum for discussing food issues; encourage coordination among different sectors of the local food system; evaluate, educate, and influence policy; and launch or support programs and services that address local food needs.

This brief was filed from the boardroom of the county administration building, 220 N. Main in Ann Arbor. A more detailed report will follow: [link]