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Bill Would Tax Sugar Sweetened Beverages



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(Sacramento, CA)
Thursday, February 18, 2010
State lawmakers are reviewing a bill that would tax soda pop and other sweetened beverages based on their sugar content. 

Supporters say the measure would provide more than a billion dollars each year to keep Californians healthy. Capital Public Radio's Steve Shadley reports...  
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Democratic Senator Dean Florez says his bill would charge a one-cent tax for every teaspoon of sugar in a soda, fruit or sport drink. 

That would equal about 17-cents for an average can of soda.
 
Florez says it would generate money for schools to teach kids about the value of proper exercise and nutrition. 

Theresa Stark is with the California Medical Association which supports the bill. She says sugary drinks are making young people obese and increasing their chances of getting diabetes...
 
 
Stark: “Doctors are very concerned about that kids particularly adolescents are getting many of their daily calories from these products. They are basically on liquid diets that are providing no nutritional value whatsoever...”
 
The tax would not apply to diet drinks. 

Supporters of the bill say some of the money also would help keep adults fit by providing more money for city parks and bike trails. 

A group called “Californians Against Food and Beverage Taxes” says there are better ways to keep people healthy. 
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