Victory at hand in Philadelphia!
A soda tax for Philadelphia cleared a major hurdle Wednesday when the City Council’s budget committee – made up of all council members – voted to send a 1.5-cent per ounce tax on sweetened drinks to regular council meeting for formal adoption.
Dr. Jim Krieger, executive director of Healthy Food America, issued this statement in response:
“Council members stood up to more than $4 million worth of beverage industry pressure to do the right thing for the long-term health and life chances of Philadelphia kids.Read more
Reclaiming revenue from sugary drinks is an idea whose time has come
When Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney explained to New York Times columnist Mark Bittman why he is looking to a sugary drinks tax for funding to lift kids out of poverty, he minced no words:
“We are going to a source where there is substantial profit, and one that has the ability to take that hit and not skip a beat. They sell more of their product in poor communities than elsewhere, and for generations none of that profit was passed on to those communities. There is no downside to this other than that the three major soda companies may make a little less money.”Read more
Bay Area vs. Big Soda heats up
California’s Bay Area this week has been the epicenter of action to reduce consumption of sugary drinks. On Tuesday, the same day a federal judge ruled that San Francisco could proceed with requiring warning labels on soda ads, the East Bay city of Albany added a proposed sugary drinks tax to the November ballot.
Albany joins neighboring Oakland in letting voters decide this November whether to follow Berkeley's example with a penny per ounce tax on sugary drinks. A similar effort is likely to hit the ballot in San Francisco, where supporters and their Board of Supervisors allies are working through a delay caused by a technical error.Read more
Support for Philly soda tax builds
Support for Philadelphia’s soda tax continues to grow even as opponents scour their predictable playbook for scare tactics, stunts and misdirection. They still don’t have a good answer for the Harvard research (commissioned by HFA) showing the enormous benefits in saving lives and dollars. Nor can they deny what the tax revenue could do for the city’s children: universal Pre-K, community schools, and rebuilt parks and recreation facilities.
Advocate Morgan Abate sees health programs and policies as key to eradicating poverty. This inspired her to create a graphic which captures the benefits of Philadelphia’s sugary drink tax.Read more
Bernie mouthing corporate propaganda? Say it ain’t so, supporters say
Did Bernie Sanders know he was parroting Big Soda’s deceptive framing when he bashed the Philadelphia mayor’s plan to fund universal preschool with a tax on sugary drinks, calling it “regressive” and a “grocery tax”?
The move rattled some of his supporters, who wondered how he could have missed the fact that soda is to groceries as flies are to soup: You might find them in the same place, but that doesn’t mean they’re both to be consumed for nourishment.Read more
Breaking: Boulder will pursue a sugary drinks tax
Public health advocates in Boulder today filed a ballot measure for 2016 that will raise revenue from a soda tax to promote access to healthy foods and exercise for families and children in the city.
Today’s action starts a city review of the proposed ballot language that can take up to 15 days, campaign organizers said. Once the language is certified, a coalition now coming together as Healthy Boulder Kids will have until June 28 to collect and submit the signatures required to qualify for the November ballot.Read more