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The Seattle City Council on Monday approved a new tax on soda and other sugary beverages as way to raise millions for healthy food and education programs.
The ordinance calls for a tax of 1.75 cents per ounce to be paid by distributors of beverages such as Pepsi and Coke, sports drinks, energy drinks and other sweetened drinks. The tax excludes diet drinks.
Supporters - Health - Advocates - Community - Groups
Supporters such as public health advocates and community groups cheered after the measure passed on a 7-1 vote. They say it would cut down on the consumption of sugary drinks that have little nutritional value and are linked to obesity, diabetes and other health problems.
Businesses and labor groups spoke out against the tax, saying it would hurt small businesses and cost jobs. Other critics called it regressive, saying it would affect low-income consumers the most.
Seattle - Handful - Cities - Soda - Tax
Seattle joins a handful of other cities nationwide that have a soda tax. Last month, voters in Santa Fe, New Mexico, resoundingly rejected a soda tax proposal, but Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Oakland, California, have approved taxes on sugary beverages.
Councilman Tim Burgess, who sponsored Seattle's measure, said there's incontrovertible evidence that sugary drinks have negative health outcomes and that people of color are disproportionately targeted. "Liquid sugar has zero nutritional benefits," he said.
Mayor - Ed - Murray - Idea
Mayor Ed Murray proposed the idea...
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