A sugary drinks tax is being proposed on a ballot measure in San Francisco. Reuters reports via Yahoo Oct. 29 that sugary beverages are viewed as being directly linked with childhood obesity and diabetes. Supervisor Scott Wiener is asking citizens to vote in November 2014 for imposing a two-cents-per-ounce tax on soda and other drinks with added sugar purchased in San Francisco.
Measures proposed in Richmond and El Monte, Calif. failed to be voted through last year for selling sugary drinks at one-cent-per-ounce.
"We know that this will be a long road," Wiener said of the ballot he formally proposed Tuesday. "This type of proposal has occurred in other cities and the beverage industry always comes out full guns blaring, so we're going to need to pull together to make sure that this wins."
A ballot measure requires two-thirds support from voters in order to pass and be enacted. Wiener said a sugary drinks tax would decrease the amount of unhealthy beverages being sold and money from the tax would go towards physical education and health programs.
"Voters really want to know where their tax money is going to go," Wiener said.
If the tax is imposed, it would mean 24 extra cents per a 12-ounce can of soda. Wiener estimates it bringing in $30 million in tax proceeds per year. The tax would apply to drinks contained with sugar and at least 25 calories per ounce.
The sugary drinks tax ballot is slated to go to a city Budget and Finance subcommittee for a hearing next spring.