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City of San Francisco Sugary Drink Tax (November 2014)

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A City of San Francisco Sugary Drink Tax ballot measure may be on the November 4, 2014 election ballot for voters in the city of San Francisco, California.

This measure, which would impose a $0.02 per ounce tax on sugary beverages in San Francisco, was introduced by city supervisor Scott Wiener. The tax would amount to a 24 cent tax on every can of soda sold. The tax was estimated to bring in a revenue of about $31 million per year.[1]

The proceeds of this tax would be earmarked for "to nutrition, physical activity, and health programs in public schools, parks, and elsewhere."[2]

With millions of dollars spent by the beverage industry in opposition, similar tax measures were defeated in 2012 in Richmond and the town of El Monte.[3]

A 2/3rds supermajority vote is required for approval of this measure.

Support

Supporters

Supervisor Scott Wiener

Supervisor Scott Wiener is the sponsor of this measure.

Arguments in favor

According to Wiener, "We are experiencing an epidemic of health problems directly attributable to sugary beverages – including spikes in diabetes and obesity afflicting adults, teenagers, and even young children. Teenagers, particularly in low income communities, are now being diagnosed with pre-diabetes or full-blown diabetes. These cases of diabetes are attributable to significant consumption of sugary beverages. A recent California survey found that sugary beverage consumption by teenagers is increasing above its already-high level."[2]

Opposition

Based on previous ballot measure campaigns, the beverage industry, with The American Beverage Association in the front lines, is expected to strongly oppose this measure and provide ample funds for the opposition campaign.[3]

Path to the ballot

According to a fact sheet on the proposed soda tax found on Scott Wiener's website, Wiener is collaborating with Supervisors Eric Mar, Malia Cohen and John Avalos to unify proposals and get the tax on the ballot.[2]

Similar measures

Defeatedd City of Richmond Tax on Soda, Measure N (November 2012)
Defeatedd City of El Monte Soda Tax, Measure H (November 2012)

External links

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Additional reading

References