One Win, One Loss on Soda Taxes

Two other states sent questions to the voters about soda taxes and the voters gave one a yes and the other a no. Oregon voters rejected Measure 103 by an overwhelming margin of 57 – 43%. The proposal would have banned most new taxes on grocery items – especially soda and other sugary beverages. The…

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Elsewhere On The Ballot

With just over 10 days until the critical 2020 midterm elections on November 6, this is a good time to underscore the importance of small business men and women exercising their civic duty to vote – and protect your business interests. Aside from the Senatorial and Congressional battles around the country, there are a number…

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Soda Taxes Done, Council Looks at Scheduling

With its egregious soda tax legislation having been ratified by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court a few months ago, the Philadelphia City Council has now turned its eye to another business-killing idea. They announced they’ll hold a public hearing on October 30 to review restrictive scheduling legislation pending before the body. The legislation, introduced back in…

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Stopping More Soda Taxes

Out in the “other Washington” (that would be the state), voters in November will be asked to prohibit local communities from imposing additional taxes on groceries including soda or other sugary beverages. If passed, Initiative 1634 would not affect Seattle’s tax on soda, syrups and sugary beverages of 1.75 cents per ounce, but it will…

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Plastic Straws Restricted in California

Taking restrictions to a whole new level, California Governor Jerry Brown last week signed 2 bills into law that place additional restrictions on the restaurant industry in a couple of different areas. The first restricts the distribution of plastic straws while the second targets sugary drinks by mandating that only milk or sparkling, still or…

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Soda Tax Preemption in Washington

Voters in Washington State will have the opportunity to do the same thing that California legislators did a few months ago when I-1634 is on the ballot in November. Initiative-1634 is an initiative petition that would prohibit local communities from levying new or increased taxes, fees or assessments on raw or processed foods, beverages, or…

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Soda Tax Issues Go To Voters

Soda taxes have been challenged by business interests across the country and have largely been given the judicial green light more often than not. In at least two jurisdictions over the next few months, questions surrounding the tax will go before the voters over different issues. First, in Boulder Colorado, which implemented a 2 cents-per-ounce levy…

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California Passes Healthy Kids Meal Bill

The California state legislature has passed and sent on to Governor Jerry Brown for his signature, S.1192 – the Healthy Kids Meal Act. Just weeks after the Golden State banned local communities from passing their own taxes on groceries (including and ostensibly, targeting soda), the legislature is dictating that only water, flavored water or unflavored…

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Philly Soda Tax Upheld by Court

In a 4-2 decision, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court upheld the validity of the Philadelphia soda tax, rejecting a major challenge brought by the beverage and food merchant industries. Philadelphia passed the new tax back in 2016 assessing distributors and dealers 1.5 cents per ounce on sugary beverages. The city cleverly drafted the tax to apply…

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Man Bites Dog as California Bans Soda Taxes

Yes, it is true – not the man bites dog part, but the rest is anyway!) California Governor Jerry Brown last week very quickly signed into law a bill that prohibits local communities in the Golden State from enacting any taxes on groceries – including nonalcoholic beverages – at least until 2031. The first soda…

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