Seattle City Council To Decide Tax On Soda, Sugary Drinks

SEATTLE (AP) — The Seattle City Council is expected to vote Monday on a proposal to tax soda and other sugary beverages.

The latest version calls for a tax of 1.75 cents per ounce on major distributors of beverages such as Pepsi and Coke, sports drinks, energy drinks and other sweetened drinks.

Mayor Ed Murray proposed the tax in February as a way to raise millions for programs to promote healthy eating and help close the learning gap between white and minority students. He revised his plan to add diet drinks after an analysis showed their popularity among wealthy people and white people.

The version that advanced out a council committee Wednesday, however, doesn’t include diet drinks. Some critics have called that plan regressive.

Businesses oppose the tax as harmful to the local economy and communities. Supporters say it will help cut down on sugar consumption.

Cities such as Philadelphia and San Francisco have approved taxes on sugar drinks.

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