People are feeling sticker shock over Seattle’s sugary drink tax.
You might’ve seen a picture circulating on social media that shows a more than $10 tax on a $15.99 case of Gatorade at Costco. On Friday, shoppers were taking their own pictures, stunned by the new prices.
Well, Little Hitlerville, aka Seattle, is sticking it to it’s residents all in the name of “helping”. Exactly who is it helping? Their pocketbooks?
Even IF they use the collected funds for what they claim they will, it is nothing short of highway robbery IMO
Advocates of the tax held a press conference on Friday, to explain how the city plans to use the $15 million expected to be raised from the tax in 2018.
Not everyone believes the money will be used the way they claim it will:
One Costco shopper loaded a case of Coca-Cola into her cart, not noticing the new price until KIRO7 pointed it out.
“That much!” said Vilma Villagran, who was buying the case for her family.
The regular case of Coke is now $7.35 more expensive than the Diet Coke or Coke Zero.
“I knew it was going to be high, but not that crazy high,” Villagran said.
Other shoppers closely read the sign, which explains that as of Jan. 1, Seattle shoppers are paying 1.75 cents per ounce on sugar-sweetened beverages – something shoppers are really noticing when buying in bulk.
The tax has many people opting for the diet soda.
Supporters of the tax said that’s the point – not necessarily to switch to diet soda, but getting consumers to go for healthier options.
“I’m just very excited,” said Jim Krieger, who is on the committee for Seattle Healthy Kids Coalition and is the executive director of Health Food America.
“The hope is consumption of the unhealthy product — which causes heart disease, diabetes — will go down, the sugary drinks to go down, and we fully expect that to be the case,” Krieger said.
The other purpose is tax dollars.
The $15 million Seattle expects to raise from the tax will go toward programs that will help people who are in need have better access to fresh fruits and vegetables. The money will also fund education programs. See the full breakdown provided at the end of the article.
But back at Costco, signs above each taxed sugary drink remind shoppers you can leave the city and buy the product without paying the tax.
And that’s what Villagran plans to do. “It’ll have to be Tukwila, the closest to me,” she said.