Philadelphia in shock over 51% beverage tax

Look for soft drink speakeasys and bootleggers.

Fellowship of the Minds

Imagine paying $8.03 for this 8-pack of Lipton Diet Green Tea that normally costs $4.99.

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That’s what Philadelphians woke up to on January 1, when a soda tax approved last June by the Philadelphia City Council and Democrat mayor Jim Kenney went into effect.

With 14 Democrats and 3 Republicans, the City Council’s vote was — SURPRISE! — 14-3.

The proceeds from the soda tax ostensibly will go to expand “early childhood education”. It is expected to raise about $91 million annually to be spent on expanding prekindergarten programs in the city; creating community schools; improving parks, recreation centers, and libraries; and offering a tax credit for businesses that sell healthy beverages.

Philadelphia’s 1.5-cent-per-ounce soda tax, the first such tax imposed in a major U.S. city, affects thousands of products – essentially anything bottled, canned, or from a fountain with either sugar or artificial sweetener added, with a few exceptions…

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