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Big Soda’s sweet deal to ban soda taxes is a California shakedown

June 25, 2018

The Sacramento Bee,

Editorial Board,

June 25, 2018-

If you haven’t stopped drinking sugary soda already, now would be a great time to not give another cent to the beverage companies. Talk about a shakedown. As reported Sunday by The Sacramento Bee’s Alexei Koseff, a power play by the American Beverage Association – the one we warned you about in April – appears to be working as intended. As the deadline for signing the state budget approaches this week, a developing trailer bill attached to it would give Big Soda a 12-year ban on local soda taxes in exchange for dropping a ballot initiative that would threaten the finances of cities throughout California.

Who says extortion doesn’t pay? Alarmed by local sales tax hikes on sugary drinks in Berkeley, Oakland and San Francisco, the beverage industry this year threw its weight – and about $7 million – behind a November ballot initiative that would dramatically raise the threshold for local tax measures. That in turn has alarmed local governments, including the city of Sacramento.

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