News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Breaking News

Community News Network

July 7, 2014

Nation's first soda tax could come to Berkeley

Berkeley, California, could become the first U.S. city to tax sugary drinks.

The Berkeley City Council unanimously decided last week to put the 1-cent-per-ounce tax on the ballot this November. Approving the tax would mean a major defeat for the soda industry, which has spent millions to crush the effort nationwide.

More than a dozen local groups, from the NAACP to the Berkeley Dental Society, have pledged support for the "Berkeley vs. Big Soda" campaign, which legislators have pitched as a public health and social justice issue.

"Big Soda will claim that we are attacking a product that is beloved by low-income folks," council member Laurie Capitelli said, "but those are the people who are coming to us and asking us to put this on the ballot."

The American Beverage Association, Coca Cola and PepsiCo have led the battle against soda taxes, spending more than $40 million in 2010 alone to combat the effort in Congress. The industry also spent aggressively to fight off proposed taxes in more than a dozen states.

Illinois last tried to approve the tax in May, with lawmakers predicting up to $400 million in new revenue. But the bill failed after intense pressure from the Illinois Manufacturers Association, which warned of job losses across the state.

Some researchers say they have found evidence that the soda tax could work. A study published last month by the American Journal of Agricultural Economics found that a 6-cent tax on a 12-ounce can of Coke or Pepsi would mean an average reduction of 5,800 calories per person every year.

But the American Beverage Association has cast doubt that the tax would affect the country's obesity epidemic. "Taxes don't make people healthy," the association's public affairs director, Chris Gindlesperger, told reporters.

Two other towns in California, El Monte and Richmond, have already rejected similar measures. But activists in Berkeley - the state's most liberal city - are optimistic.

California lawmakers have already targeted sugar as a health hazard. The state Senate approved a bill in May that would require safety warnings on beverages that contain more than 75 calories, though it has stalled in committee.

 

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Community News Network
Latest News
TribStar.com Poll
AP Video
Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law Raw: Israel Bombs Multiple Targets in Gaza Raw: MH17 Passenger Remains in Kharkiv, Ukraine Raw: Israel Hits Gaza Targets, Destroys Mosques Raw: Lawmakers Scuffle in Ukraine's Parliament New Orleans Plans to Recycle Cigarette Butts Raw: Cargo Craft Undocks From Space Station Michigan Plant's Goal: Flower and Die WWII Vet Gets Medals, 70 Years Late Widow: Jury Sent Big Tobacco a $23B Message Obama Offers Condolences at Dutch Embassy Cat Fans Lap Up Feline Film Festival UN Security Council Calls for MH 17 Crash Probe Foxx Cites Washington 'Circus Mirror' Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment ShowBiz Minute: Hoffman, Oberst, Box Office The Rock Finds His Inner 'Hercules' Israeli Aircraft Hits Dozens of Gaza Targets Obama Bestows Medal of Honor on NH Veteran Texas Sending National Guard Troops to Border
NDN Video
Samsung Pre-Trolls The IPhone 6 With New Ad Jimmy Kimmel Introduces His Baby Girl Swim Daily, Nina Agdal in the Cook Islands Guilty Dog Apologizes to Baby for Stealing Her Toy Prince George Turns 1 and is Already a Trendsetter Train Collides With Semi Truck Carrying Lighter Fluid Kanye West Tells-All on Wedding in "GQ" Interview Tony Dungy Weighs in on Michael Sam Scarlett Johansson Set To Marry In August New Star Wars Episode XII X-Wing Revealed Obama: Putin must push separatists to aid MH17 probe Michigan inmates no longer allowed to wear orange due to 'OITNB' Adam Levine Ties the Knot Sebastian The Ibis Walks Beautiful Bride Down The Aisle | ACC Must See Moment NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong Faces of Souls Lost in Malaysian Plane Crash 105-year-old woman throws first pitch Man Creates Spreadsheet of Wife's Reasons for Turning Down Sex 'Weird Al' Is Wowed by Album's Success Rory McIlroy struggles, surges, wins British Open
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -

     

    March 12, 2010

activity