Cook County Commissioners Sour on Sugary Drinks Tax

Cook County Commissioners Sour on Sugary Drinks Tax

Nanny staters are gonna nanny state.

Despite warnings from Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle of steep budget cuts across the county if her pop tax was repealed, the Cook County Board Committee rejected her sweetened beverage tax 15-1 on Tuesday, Oct. 10, after a almost four-hour session.

On a 15-2 vote, the Cook County Board of Commissioners on Wednesday repealed the penny-an-ounce levy on sweetened beverages it passed last November.

County Board Commissioner Richard Boykin, who has led the charge against the tax, has proposed cutting spending and eliminating vacant positions to make up for the revenue generated by the tax, which added 68 cents to the price of a 2-liter bottle and 72 cents to the cost of a six-pack. "Beverage taxes just don't work and we look forward to December 1st".

Bloomberg has taken his anti-soda campaign nationally with little success. "I voted Wednesday - along with Commissioner Jerry Butler - to keep Cook County's sweetened beverage tax because it was a tax on a small number of people rather than a general sales or property tax on all". "Beverage taxes are really a money grab that has nothing to do with public health".

Additionally, Chicago-area retailers demonstrated that they were losing sales as consumers seeking to avoid the tax started shopping in collar counties and in for beverages, as well as other groceries.

Grace, secretary-treasurer of Teamsters Local 830, called on Mayor Jim Kenney and City Council to repeal the city's own sweetened beverage tax.

"And yet in this tax and spend, Democrat-run city, consumers forced the city council to cough up their recent tax hike and repeal the soda tax", Grover Norquist, president of the anti-tax Americans for Tax Reform, said in a statement. For instance, he said, a sweet bottled drink would be taxed while a similar beverage from a barista would be exempt.

After initially trying to absorb the tax, Powell said he had to raise drink prices to transfer the burden to customers when revenue declined.