Port Angeles council OKs healthy food, beverage proposal

By Paul Gottlieb
Peninsula Daily News

PORT ANGELES — A healthy food and beverage policy that is a stronger version of the original proposal has been established for city-sponsored meetings, events and activities.

Six Port Angeles City Council members — with former Mayor Dan Di Guilio absent — approved the anti-junk-food measure with little discussion at the end of a five-hour regular council meeting last week.

The policy becomes part of the wellness-program component of the city’s medical plan and helps the city reduce its overall health insurance premium, city Finance Director Byron Olson has said.

City Human Resources Director Bob Coons said the biggest change in the healthy food and beverage policy, which the council first considered in September, was the substitution of the word “encourage” for “consider” — as in the city will “encourage serving fresh fruits, vegetables and salads” and will “purchase fresh, locally grown, seasonal produce whenever possible” rather than simply consider it.

Councilman Max Mania and Councilwoman Sissi Bruch had argued for a more strongly worded policy at the September council meeting.

The new policy is part of a wellness program to educate employees on how to make healthy lifestyle choices.

It concerns only food purchased with city funds.

The policy also asks city employees to consider the “Sit for 60 and Move for 5 Model” under which attendees at city meetings would stand up, move, stretch or walk for five minutes.

Coons said the Washington Cities Insurance Authority, through which the city gets its employee insurance, “really liked” the policy.

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Senior Staff Writer Paul Gottlieb can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5060, or at paul.gottlieb@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: October 06. 2012 5:17PM
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