PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Maine's Republican senator is joining a group of colleagues to beef up federal resources that are dedicated to getting fresh, local foods into schools.

Sen. Susan Collins says it's a bipartisan effort to make sure students in Maine and elsewhere have access to local foods, and that it will benefit both local farmers and childhood health. She's working with Democratic Sens. Sherrod Brown of Ohio and Patrick Leahy of Vermont as well as Republican Sen. David Perdue of Georgia.

The push would benefit the Farm to School Grant Program, which is administered via the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The senators say their proposal would increase the program's authorized level from $5 million to $15 million. It would also increase the maximum grant award to $250,000.

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