To: Calvin Ball, Howard County Council
Subject: CB-17 Nutritional Standards
I'd like to thank you and your colleagues on the council who worked hard to craft this bill and show leadership in public health for Howard County Citizens. Obesity and all its related diseases are a serious concern today. I strongly believe that this is one of the biggest public health concerns of this generation.
Sugary drinks and unhealthy snacks have an entire industry to support and advocate for them. It is difficult to make one's voice heard over the din of advertisement and false claims of "part of a healthy diet". All one need do is look around and see the changes in eating habits and unhealthy diet-related illnesses to see that something is dreadfully wrong.
This bill supports the citizens of Howard County Maryland by taking a stand for public health. It offers more choice, not less. It has a limited scope--Howard County buildings and facilities--and does not prevent citizens from exercising free choice in what they eat and drink.
I was disappointed that the County Executive vetoed this bill. I think he has missed a valuable opportunity to work with the Council on behalf of County Citizens. This shouldn't be about politics. It's about public health. I sincerely hope his position will evolve over time--Howard County needs his leadership on this issue.
In closing, I support a Council override of the County Executive's veto of CB-17. It is time to move forward in supporting healthier citizens in Howard County. There's really no time to waste.
On second thought, this post should really be entitled "Challenging the Vending Machine Gods". But I have a migraine so perhaps that put me in mind of appeasement. Ah, well. You get the idea.