City of Richmond Tax on Soda, Measure N (November 2012)
The measure, if approved by the city's voters, will impose a "business license fee" of 1 cent per ounce on sugar-sweetened beverages sold within city limits. This will mean that consumers would pay 12 cents more for the average can of pop than they currently pay.
A companion measure will also be on the ballot. That measure is an advisory measure asking if the proceeds of the tax should be used for sports and health education programs "aimed at local youths."
City council member Jeff Ritterman wrote the language for the measure and is its chief spokesperson. A former chief of cardiology at Kaiser Richmond Medical Center, he says, "I'm in this to win this."
Text of measure
The question on the ballot:
|"Shall an ordinance be adopted to impose a business license fee of one (1) cent per ounce of sugar-sweetened beverage served, provided, or traded by businesses in the City?"|
Path to the ballot
The "soda tax" was placed on the ballot by a 5-2 vote of the Richmond City Council.
City council members Nat Bates and Corky Booze voted against referring the measure to the ballot. Bates said at the time of the vote, "I can't see this ballot measure passing. People are fed up with the taxes."