Sugary Drink Tax Goes on Ballot in San Francisco
Pretty soon, getting your Dr. Pepper fix in San Francisco could cost you more than usual. City legislators are looking to create a sugary drink tax in San Francisco, meaning that sodas, bottled iced teas, and other sweet beverages would be taxed two cents per ounce. This, according to the LA Times, could make as much as $31 million for the city and the proceeds would go to improving health and nutrition across the city and in schools.
“San Francisco, like the rest of the United States, is facing an epidemic of health problems directly attributable to sugary beverages including spikes in diabetes and obesity,” Supervisor Malia Cohen, one of the sponsors of the bill, told The Daily Meal.
The measure, which will go on the ballot in November, requires a two-thirds vote from city voters to pass. If passed, San Francisco would be the first city in the nation to impose such a tax. Similar measures in New York were blocked last year, when Mayor Bloomberg attempted to pass a ban on extra-large soft drinks. The measure is not without opposition from liberal lawmakers and the beverage industry.
“The only thing a beverage distribution tax will accomplish in San Francisco is to raise grocery and restaurant prices for everyone — for soda drinkers and non-soda-drinkers alike,” Chuck Finnie, a spokesperson from the Beverage Industry, said in a statement.