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Customers will cover cost of Starbucks' free college tuition program

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Last week, Starbucks made headlines when it announced it would pay for the online college tuition at Arizona State University for its full-time employees. Unfortunately, now we know how Starbucks will pay for it: by raising prices on its customers.

The coffee chain announced Saturday that it will raise prices on its drinks across the board on Tuesday, between 10 and 15 cents each. In some markets, the price hike will be even higher. It also announced it was raising the price of bags of coffee sold in stores $1 per bag.

Prices on Starbucks drinks were raised just last year, and this new price hike is not connected to the price of coffee beans, as prices with suppliers are locked in for a year in advance. This leads many to believe the hike may be, in part, due to the new college plan they announced.

The Starbucks college plan sounded like a great idea when it was announced, and it will be a great investment in retaining quality employees for the chain and improving quality of life for a number of employees. However, many wondered how the chain could afford the cost, which could be as much as $30,000 per employee per year.

While Starbucks has made some impressive moves to support its employees, many are upset with the company's executive leadership, which often supports liberal causes. That includes a well publicized statement by CEO Howard Schultz last year that their efforts to support organizations working to legalize gay marriage meant there was no room for supporters of traditional marriage in the company.

Victor Medina writes for Yahoo News and his political blog WhenLiberalsAttack.com. His other writing credits include The Dallas Morning News and SportsIllustrated.com. He has served as a Dallas County election judge and on the Board of Directors of The Sixth Floor Museum. You can follow him on his blog, VictorMedina.com or on Twitter at @mrvictormedina. He can be reached by email at vic@victormedina.com. Click here to receive a weekly email update from WhenLiberalsAttack.com. To be notified of future stories by Victor Medina, click the SUBSCRIBE link here or at the top of this page.

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