CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – With the cost of food going up, so are the costs to make school lunches.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that prices for hot lunches in schools across the U.S. went up 300 percent in the past year alone. In part, that’s because of pandemic aid for schools expiring but the other driver in this is rises in prices from food to delivery costs.

A report from NBC found contractors are passing on those price increases. The School Nutrition Association is in Washington advocating for more funds to help with school meals. In fact, on Monday Congressman Jim McGovern filed the Healthy Meals Help Kids Learn Bill. It would raise the federal reimbursement rate for school lunches by 45 cents for lunch.

“It is important that we provide good nutritious healthy meals and to do that it’s appropriate for the federal government to provide a little bit more for school districts and to states,” said Congressman McGovern.

McGovern said the legislation is especially important to pass now, with the rise in costs for food. In 2019, the National School Lunch Program provided $4.9 billion for lunches.