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originally posted by: dreamingawake
This lame tax was probably brought up by the former mayor as a diversion from his sex scandal. Didn't work so well and should be repealed anyway. Wait and see the reaction of the businesses. a reply to: Oaktree
The original one and the others in the city will have the tax.
Mayor Ed Murray proposed a new tax on sugary beverages earlier this year, a tax since altered to include artificial sweeteners after the realization that leaving artificially sweetened beverages (diet sodas, juices and their ilk) out of the mix would disproportionately hit people of color and low income communities harder. Wealthier white people tend to favor drinks with artificial sweeteners, public health officials and community organizers told Murray.
The mayor says that reports of sales losses and layoffs in Philadelphia, where a soda tax was enacted this year, have been overblown.
To bolster his proposal for Seattle, Murray points to a new study on the effects of a soda tax in Berkeley, California. Sales of sugary beverages declined nearly 10 percent in the year after the city imposed the nation’s first such tax, while sales of water and other untaxed beverages increased, according to the study, which was primarily paid for by soda-tax booster Michael Bloomberg, the former New York City mayor.
A new lawsuit accuses Seattle Mayor Ed Murray of child sexual abuse decades ago. Two other men have told The Seattle Times they, too, were abused by Murray as teenagers in the 1980s. The mayor vigorously denies all the accusations.
***FORGOT TO ADD THIS FUN FACTOID***
During his three-plus years as Seattle’s mayor, Ed Murray built a staff around him that mirrored the city’s rising population and wealth.
He recruited a senior aide to New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg to lead a new innovation team. He hired more executives than his predecessor, with salaries topping $170,000, and brought on advisers for public safety and homelessness. By Murray’s final year in office, his staff had grown by about a third and his budget by 70 percent.
The Mayor’s Office wasn’t the only one to expand.
Almost every city department increased in size over the five years ending in 2016. Public-safety costs soared by $100 million. Transportation expenses doubled. The city shelled out $1.1 billion on employee wages last year, with nearly half of full-time workers making at least $100,000, according to a Seattle Times examination of thousands of payroll records, budget documents and financial statements.
Seattle added 11 percent more residents over these five years — the fastest of any U.S. city with at least a half-million people — but government spending accelerated even faster. Excluding city services like utilities that pay for themselves, government costs shot up nearly 40 percent, among the sharpest increases of any major U.S. city.
In Seattle, when the drink is a Caramel Macchiato from Starbucks — 42 grams of sugar in a Venti, the largest size. Or a Caramel Brulée Latte with whipped cream — 68 grams of sugar in a Venti.
The city’s new tax on the distribution of sweetened beverages, syrups and concentrates, which starts Monday, excludes drinks that list milk as their first ingredient.
That rules out taxes for chocolate milk and eggnog, obviously. But some coffee-shop drinks also will be spared, said Mark Watterson of Seattle’s Finance and Administrative Services Department, which drew up rules for the tax. Flavored lattes at Starbucks list milk as their primary ingredient.
Mayor Burgess sponsored legislation, as a Seattle City Councilmember, to impose a $0.0175/oz. tax on distributors of sweetened beverages, with proceeds dedicated toward food security and education. The City anticipates approximately $14.8 million in 2018 revenues from the tax, which will go into effect in January 2018. The Mayor has proposed proceeds be dedicated toward the following programs::
The proposed budget also includes $500,000 for the Auditor’s Office to conduct an evaluation of the effects of the tax as well as $1.2 million related to the costs to implement and collect the tax.