Soft-drink tax legislation could be coming to Seattle very soon. Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn has suggested the idea of a new soft-drink tax that could help to support city parks. According to a report from the Times late Thursday (Sept. 26), the proposal is for a 1-cent-per-ounce tax on sugary beverages, including canned soda and fountain drinks. It has been met with a mixed reaction, with both sides of the issue being very vocal about their opinions.
If put into practice, this tax would add 44 cents to a 44-ounce fountain drink. That's a huge increase in price, but it could certainly raise a lot of money for the state. McGinn stated that it could raise between $21 million and $29 million a year, with the tax completely burdened upon people choosing to consume soft drinks. He was quoted as stating that, "This, I think, would be a fabulous potential funding source."
It's not a surprise that this proposal could cover the estimated $20 million shortfall that Seattle is facing when it comes to operating and maintaining parks in the city. This also isn't the first time that Washington has faced possible taxes like this, as higher taxes on soda, candy, and bottled water were attended back in 2010. After the state legislature passed that proposal, it was summarily repealed by state voters on the very next ballot.
This new Seattle soft-drink tax hasn't been officially proposed by the major just yet, but a 1-cent-per-ounce increase certainly seems like something that businesses as well as consumers are going to fight against.