Four cities propose sugary drink tax

Posted at 5:08 PM, May 17, 2016

It's a campaign to stop sugar rushes across the country.

At least four cities are proposing a tax on sugary drinks, and more could follow suit in the coming months.

Boulder, Colorado is one of the cities considering a sugary drink tax. The proposal includes two cents per ounce on 12 ounce drinks with at least 5 grams of sugar.

The proposal is an excise tax on the distributor, not a sales tax on the consumer. Distributors would have the discretion of whether to pass those costs along to the customer.

"They buy it anyway, so I'm not really worried," said Lindsay Shaw, owner of Lindsay's Boulder Deli, which sells 300 Coca-Cola products on a strong sales day. "I sell such comfort foods, and thank goodness, people are still buying them."

Drinks that do not fall under the tax include 100 percent fruit and vegetable juice and milk products.

"I still find myself buying one if I get a chance to," said Kerry Goff, a customer at Lindsay's Boulder Deli. "Apparently, it's not a deterrent. I think if there was a tax, and people like it enough, they wouldn't care."

National obesity rates continue to climb higher than 30 percent, and many blame sugary products for the spike.

The other cities proposing a tax on sugary drinks are Philadelphia, San Francisco and Oakland. The American Beverage Association has already spent $1.5 million fighting the Philadelphia proposal.