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Posted: 4/1/2002 1:13:03 AM EDT
http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-000022828mar30.story New Soda Tax Idea Reignites an Old Debate Capitol: Bill raises the issue of using laws for social engineering. Sponsor cites state budget woes and a desire to cut childhood obesity SACRAMENTO -- Citing California's huge budget shortfall and its growing number of overweight children, a state lawmaker is proposing a new tax on soda to fight childhood obesity. The idea is given little chance of passing, at least not in this election year, but it's reigniting an old debate at the Capitol about the proper role of tax policy as a social engineering tool. The California Soda Tax Act by Sen. Deborah Ortiz (D-Sacramento) is seen as the leading edge of a broader initiative to tax or levy fees on a variety of eating and drinking habits. One lawmaker, in fact, has introduced a bill to study taxing a wider range of junk food to finance health programs for children. Another may try to impose a fee on retail sales of alcoholic beverages to bolster trauma rooms. Assemblyman John Campbell (R-Irvine) described the soda proposal as the latest attempt to demonize a legal product to justify increasing taxes. Targets of so-called sin taxes have traditionally included tobacco, alcohol and gambling. "Where will this ever stop?" asked Campbell, a self-described soda abstainer who handles budget matters for his caucus. "Are they going to tax the butter on my carrots because carrots are healthier without butter?
Link Posted: 4/1/2002 1:16:24 AM EDT
"I think if you ate too much tofu it's probably bad for you, so does that mean we should tax tofu in big jars?" Ortiz's plan would impose a surtax on distributors of soda and other sweetened drinks--but not diet beverages--at a rate of about 2 cents per 12-ounce can. She said the tax could raise as much as $300 million a year. A more traditional sin tax is also under consideration this year as state officials attempt to close a projected $17.5-billion budget shortfall. Ortiz wants to raise the state excise tax on a pack of cigarettes by 65 cents to $1.52, which would give California the highest tax of that variety in the nation. But it's the soda tax that has ignited a lively discussion, as Ortiz hoped it would. Reducing childhood obesity, she contends, should be one of the major policy objectives in California. She believes that the increased prevalence of the condition is being fueled by young people consuming more sweetened drinks and less milk. "In this culture of the 'Big Gulp,' it's really quite alarming," said Ortiz, chairwoman of the Senate Committee on Health and Human Services and another soda abstainer. "I don't think there's any one staple of a child or teenager's diet that is so utterly devoid of any nutritional value as soda." Sean McBride, a spokesman for the National Soft Drink Assn., countered, "It's overly simplistic to say if we eliminate soft drinks from the food supply that people will be healthy." McBride offered an alternative to the big-government approach to diminishing childhood obesity: 30 minutes of exercise a day and a balanced diet. He cited Arkansas, Washington and West Virginia as states that impose special or excise taxes on soft drinks. In California, only sales taxes are now applied to carbonated beverages. Advocates of Ortiz's proposal cite a changing environment as cause for government intervention. Children are spending too much time staring at video game, computer and television screens, they say. At the same time, young people are being bombarded by attractively packaged foods with poor nutritional quality.
Link Posted: 4/1/2002 1:18:32 AM EDT
"""Reducing childhood obesity, she contends, should be one of the major policy objectives in California. She believes that the increased prevalence of the condition is being fueled by young people consuming more sweetened drinks and less milk.""" What an absurd and utterly BS piece of crap. I wonder what happened to that AGE OLD problem of ILLEGAL aliens. But oh. . .opps. . . this is PRK. It's WORSE being fat from sodas than breaking the laws of the United States.
Link Posted: 4/1/2002 1:26:42 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Kaimeara: McBride offered an alternative to the big-government approach to diminishing childhood obesity: 30 minutes of exercise a day and a balanced diet.
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Who'd of thunk it? Exercise? If we want to place blame and make someone pay besides the fat kids..... tax the parents for every pound their kid is overweight. Hey, they're in charge of feeding the chubby little non-dodgeball playing, ruin life for the rest of us, lazy, fat, putrid pieces of Crisco anyway. Yet another example of idiots blaming inanimate objects for the results of decisions made by idiots. I say drop 3/4ths of the taxes.... and all welfare, and California would be swimming in money.
Link Posted: 4/1/2002 1:43:46 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/1/2002 1:45:56 AM EDT by UlysseNardin_1846]
Ahh..the snack tax makes a comeback. Worthless state is more like it. But remember, there's a special place in hell reserved for these POS politicians.[devil][devil][devil][devil]
Link Posted: 4/1/2002 5:56:07 AM EDT
It Takes A Village....................Idiot
Link Posted: 4/1/2002 6:04:28 AM EDT
Red Davis using his toadies to try to save his a**.
Link Posted: 4/1/2002 6:05:32 AM EDT
This sounds like the same village full of idiots that want to put a nickel tax on each round of ammunition.
Link Posted: 4/1/2002 8:37:28 PM EDT
Remember, liberals always know what is best for us. GunLvr
Link Posted: 4/1/2002 8:59:16 PM EDT
Link Posted: 4/1/2002 9:09:43 PM EDT
Great, In addition to getting my ammo out of the state I’m going to have to buy my SODA out of state too!!!! 2 cents per 12ounce of soda would be enough that people would not think twice about it, so it won’t stop people from buying soda – just raise MORE money for out state. Greedy Kalifornia. - Sulaco
Link Posted: 4/1/2002 9:09:54 PM EDT
Now if they would have put a special tax on beer and Starbucks there would be rioting in the street. Bullet tax, gun bans, nah, not important enough.
Link Posted: 4/1/2002 10:45:29 PM EDT
Come on guys don't talk about this on the net! Our crooks errr law makers here in Oklahoma have just about exhausted things to tax us on and we don't need to give them any ideas![BD]
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