Chicago, other cities adopt soda, tobacco taxes
Dr. Jonathan Shenkin, spokesman for the American Dental Association, predicts more cities will enact similar taxes.
“Increasing the cost of soda and sugar-sweetened beverages will ultimately reduce their consumption, which is of great value for dental professionals," Shenkin said
Chicago became only the second U.S. city to have a direct tax on consumers purchasing sodas (Philadelphia announced its 1.5-cent-per-ounce tax this year). Chicago’s 5.2 million residents will pay 1 cent per ounce for all “sugary and artificially sweetened” beverages.
Other communities levied taxes on soda distributors, whom lawmakers expect will pass the additional cost to consumers. Voters in the California cities of San Francisco, Oakland and Albany approved a 1-cent-per-ounce tax on iced tea, smoothies and soft drinks.
Distributors in Boulder, Colorado, will face a 2-cent-per-ounce tax on products containing 5 grams or more of sugar per 12 ounces. The local newspaper, The Daily Camera, reports the tax won’t affect alcoholic beverages, milk or juice drinks.
California residents, by a 63-37 percent margin, also approved Proposition 56, a law placing an additional $2 per pack on cigarettes and corresponding increases on other tobacco and nicotine-containing products, such as e-cigarettes. The tax is expected to raise $30 million a year for the state’s oral health initiatives.
"Proposition 56 will save thousands of lives, save the health care system billions of dollars and provide substantial new funding for the state's Medi-Cal program so more patients can get care," according to a release from the California Dental Association.
Organizations in this story
American Dental Association 211 E Chicago Ave Chicago, IL - 60611