Seattle will tax sugary soda — but not diet

BIV

I'm Biv Dick Black, the Over Poster.
#1
Seattle will tax sugary soda — but not diet
Originally published June 5, 2017 at 3:51 pm Updated June 6, 2017 at 12:10 pm

Teamsters Local 174 Business Agent Pete Lamb, right, speaks in opposition to the tax on sweetened beverages Monday at Seattle City Hall. (Greg Gilbert/The Seattle Times)
The Seattle City Council on Monday approved a new tax on distributors of soda pop and other sugary drinks. Diet soft drinks were exempted. The tax is expected to take effect in early July and add about $1.18 to the cost of a 2-liter bottle of soda.

By
Daniel Beekman
Seattle Times staff reporter


The Seattle City Council on Monday approved a new tax on distributors of sugary drinks such as soda pop.

Proponents said the tax would reduce consumption of unhealthful beverages and help the city provide better access to nutritious foods in low-income neighborhoods and communities of color.

They said soda companies market heavily to children in those communities, where more people struggle with sugar-linked health problems such as obesity.

The vote was 7-1, with Councilmember Lisa Herbold voting no, and Councilmember Kshama Sawant absent.


A handful of other cities and counties have adopted similar taxes, including Berkeley, California; Philadelphia; and Cook County, Illinois, which includes Chicago.

“It’s a huge win for Seattle,” said Victor Colman, director of the Seattle-based Childhood Obesity Prevention Coalition.

“It’s not a panacea for the problem of childhood obesity, but it’s a huge marker to take this step. Consumption drops will happen, and we’re going to see stronger health in the communities that need this the most.”

Monday’s action followed months of debate over the tax, initially proposed by Mayor Ed Murray. Business groups and some labor unions warned that the plan would burden entrepreneurs and result in job losses.

There were arguments about whether diet soda would be taxed, whether the syrups in flavored lattes prepared by baristas would be taxed, what the tax rate would be and how the money would be spent.

The council ultimately settled on a rate of 1.75 cents per ounce, which means the tax would be about $1.18 for a 2-liter bottle of soda.

The tax will be collected starting next year unless opponents put a referendum on the ballot and succeed in blocking the measure.

Diet soda won’t be taxed, and the council also chose to exempt baby formula, medicine, weight-loss drinks and 100 percent fruit juice.


Sports drinks such as Gatorade, energy drinks such as Red Bull and fruit drinks such as Sunny D all will be taxed, along with syrups used in soda-fountain pop.

Some council members favored including diet soda, which is more popular with wealthier white consumers. That was one recommendation made after the city put the plan through a racial-equity analysis.

But other council members said the science suggesting diet soda is an unhealthful beverage is less solid than the evidence of regular soda being harmful.

The mayor initially exempted barista-made coffee beverages from the tax. Then he exempted milk drinks, instead. It remained unclear Monday whether the syrups used in flavored lattes such as those ordered at Starbucks would be taxed.

Amendments were proposed by Council President Bruce Harrell to explicitly exclude such drinks and by Councilmember Lisa Herbold to explicitly include them, but each failed. Herbold said it’s her understanding that lattes won’t end up being taxed.

Herbold said she voted against the tax because her colleagues rejected her attempts to lower the rate and to include diet soda and lattes. She said the tax measure, as passed, would hit poor pop buyers hardest.

There were mixed messages about the reason for the tax, with some proponents saying it would discourage consumption of unhealthful beverages and others stressing the good that would be done with the revenue.

Under the mayor’s plan, the bulk of the revenue would have funded education programs for low-income and otherwise vulnerable children. But the council shifted the emphasis more toward healthful-eating programs.

The tax is expected to raise about $15 million per year. Some money will support the city’s Fresh Bucks program, which helps people using food stamps buy more fruits and vegetables at farmers markets.

And the council approved an amendment offered by Councilmember Debora Juarez calling out food banks and soup kitchens as eligible to receive funds.

“Funds raised by the tax will put healthy food on the table for hungry families across our city,” said Tanika Thompson, a food-access organizer for the South Seattle community organization Got Green.

Doctors and health organizations such as the American Heart Association supported the tax.

But soda companies, many convenience-store and restaurant owners and the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce opposed it, as did the Martin Luther King County Labor Council and a Teamsters union with workers in the soda industry.

The council reserved up to $1.5 million in the first five years of the tax to help such workers retrain for new jobs.

Husik Harutyunyan, who owns a small grocery store in North Seattle, urged the council to reject the tax.

He said his customers may begin buying pop in Shoreline if the tax leads him to raise his prices. “I have to close my store and go find some job,” the 44-year-old said.

A 10-year-old, Sophia Harrison, offered another view during the council’s public-comment period Monday.

“It is a great idea to fund programs to help kids be more prepared and to help families eat more healthy food,” she said, reading from handwritten remarks.

“I can’t think of a better way to raise that money than a tax on something that has absolutely no nutritional value.”

http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/politics/seattle-city-council-says-yes-to-soda-tax/
 

BIV

I'm Biv Dick Black, the Over Poster.
#2
Seattle mayor signs soda tax into law

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray on Tuesday signed a bill into law that will add a 1.75 cent per ounce tax on sugary drinks in the city.

Unless there's a legal challenge or referendum, the law is expected to go into effect January 1, 2018.

Murray said he was disappointed that the tax will not apply to diet drinks.

RELATED - VERIFY: Will soda tax kill Seattle jobs?

"I'm still pleased to sign legislation that holds corporations accountable for profiting off products that put people's health, particularly young people's health, at risk," Murray said.

Murray said studies have shown a link between poor health and poor education outcomes and that the money raised by the tax will help fund health and education programs.

“I'm proud to be signing another cutting edge piece of legislation and that Seattle leads the way on,” he said.

Labor leaders and the Chamber of Commerce had argued against the tax. Small business owners testified that the tax would either cut into their profits or they'd have to raise prices.

http://www.king5.com/news/local/seattle/seattle-mayor-signs-soda-tax/446261771
 

BIV

I'm Biv Dick Black, the Over Poster.
#3
Just in case you were told there would be no math, that $2.52 added to the current price of a 12 pack of coke
 
#4
Just in case you missed it, this is Raysiss...because only wealthy white people are smart enough to understand the impact of 1,000s of empty calories from regular soda (sugar) and choose diet drinks instead...and since diet drinks (Drinks that do not contain sugar) are not taxed...it's raysiiisssss
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
#5
Just in case you were told there would be no math, that $2.52 added to the current price of a 12 pack of coke
Philly did the same shit and it's basically putting the soda distributors out of business
 

Ballbuster1

In The Danger Zone...
Wackbag Staff
#6
Philly did the same shit and it's basically putting the soda distributors out of business
Idiots in Seattle are even worse. Philly's tax is 1.5 cents an ounce.
Both ridiculous and just more nanny state horse shit.
 

the Streif

¡¡¡¡sıʞunɹɹɹɹɹɹɹℲ
Donator
#7
I don't live in Philadelphia or Seattle and I pretty much only drink water. Tap water or bottled, I don't particularly give a flying fuck. But anyways, this doesn't affect me. No fucks shall be given.

You get the .gov that you vote for. If you don't like it, move. Let the fucks that voted for this kind of shit eat themselves like they inevitably will.
 

Floyd1977

Registered User
#8
BTW, aren't all the lefty hipsters who support this shit getting priced out of Seattle and Portland?
 

Turfmower

Registered User
#9
Didn't they pass the $15 min wage so the can afford it
 

Floyd1977

Registered User
#10
You get the .gov that you vote for. If you don't like it, move. Let the fucks that voted for this kind of shit eat themselves like they inevitably will.
Except the problem is that this shit metastasizes into anywhere worth living.
 

ysr50

Well-Known Member
Donator
#11
Pop, soda, energy drinks, none of that shit is good for anyone. I don't think they should tax peoples poor health choices.
 

Begbie

Wackbag Generalissimo
#12
Many people are addicted to the sugar, or high fructose corn syrup...which is especially not good for you. So, they'll just get their sugar fix with another product. Or they'll switch to diet, which the artificial sweeteners may not be healthy. Not to mention the caramel coloring allegedly being linked to some cancers. 12-packs can retail for as much as $5.49 not on sale. That could potentially push the price to $8 for a 12 pack. Over $2 for what would be a 99 cent two liter.

But government knows best and must protect you from buying that soda can...and instead, buy a cheaper 79 cent candy bar.
 

Mags

A.K.A. Chad
Donator
#13
Many people are addicted to the sugar, or high fructose corn syrup...which is especially not good for you. So, they'll just get their sugar fix with another product. Or they'll switch to diet, which the artificial sweeteners may not be healthy. Not to mention the caramel coloring allegedly being linked to some cancers. 12-packs can retail for as much as $5.49 not on sale. That could potentially push the price to $8 for a 12 pack. Over $2 for what would be a 99 cent two liter.

But government knows best and must protect you from buying that soda can...and instead, buy a cheaper 79 cent candy bar.
According to Doctor Steve, HFCS is only slightly worse than sugar as far as health goes. The difference is so small that they are equally bad.

Flewid.
 

JonBenetRamsey

well shit the bed
#15
Many people are addicted to the sugar, or high fructose corn syrup...which is especially not good for you. So, they'll just get their sugar fix with another product. Or they'll switch to diet, which the artificial sweeteners may not be healthy. Not to mention the caramel coloring allegedly being linked to some cancers. 12-packs can retail for as much as $5.49 not on sale. That could potentially push the price to $8 for a 12 pack. Over $2 for what would be a 99 cent two liter.

But government knows best and must protect you from buying that soda can...and instead, buy a cheaper 79 cent candy bar.
You ever suck dick for Coke?
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
#17
I find it funny how they have run out of tradional sins to tax so now they are making them up
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
#19
Greasy potato chips are being looked at.

#deathchips
You can bet, candy and fast food is in their crosshairs, I wouldn't be shocked if they start taxing sugar in 50+pound amounts
 

Mags

A.K.A. Chad
Donator
#20
You can bet, candy and fast food is in their crosshairs, I wouldn't be shocked if they start taxing sugar in 50+pound amounts
Seriously, they probably considered taxing bags of #deathsugar but the price of 80% of our foods would skyrocket. They just don't have the balls. Yet.
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
#21
Seriously, they probably considered taxing bags of #deathsugar but the price of 80% of our foods would skyrocket. They just don't have the balls. Yet.
Give it a few years, just like the soda, they taxed cigarettes, booze, hotels parking..... and they are running out of things to tax
 

Ballbuster1

In The Danger Zone...
Wackbag Staff
#22
Give it a few years, just like the soda, they taxed cigarettes, booze, hotels parking..... and they are running out of things to tax
Oh yeah, as people quit using highly taxed items the revenue will
go down and they'll search for new things to tax for a constantly
expanding, ever wasteful government.
 

gleet

What's black and white and red all over?
#23
Give it a few years, just like the soda, they taxed cigarettes, booze, hotels parking..... and they are running out of things to tax
I paid an airport use tax in Vancouver once, something like 11 bucks to walk to my next plane. Hmm. When I flew a year later almost every airport had a similar fee.
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
#24
I paid an airport use tax in Vancouver once, something like 11 bucks to walk to my next plane. Hmm. When I flew a year later almost every airport had a similar fee.
We get "free" flights a every once in a while and they always cost us at least 2-300$ in "taxes and fees" and we are not checking 4 or 5 bags (another fucking scam)
 
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