Under Measure D, will all sugar-sweetened products be taxed the same?
Chocolate milk, 100% juice drinks, alcoholic beverages, and some coffee drinks will not be taxed—no matter how much sugar or how many calories they contain. Organic local root beer will be taxed, but diet soda will be exempt. An iced tea is taxed if it is pre-sweetened, but not if the customer adds the sugar. Confused? You’re not alone.
I thought Measure D is supposed to fund health and wellness programs?
Measure D is written so that the City Council can spend the tax revenue on anything they want. A similar measure in San Francisco specifically dedicates beverage tax funds for health and wellness programs. That is not the case with Measure D.
Is it true Measure D is not about making us healthier; it’s just about raising more money for the city?
That’s true. Lawmakers in San Francisco say funds from their proposed tax measure will go toward health and wellness programs. Berkeley lawmakers just want the tax money for the general fund so they can spend it however they choose—and they want Berkeley taxpayers to pay for it.
Under Measure D, will all stores be treated the same?
No. Some stores will be taxed—others will not. And that’s not the only loophole. Under Measure D, a retailer who picks up his beverages outside of Berkeley won’t pay the tax.
What effect will this tax have on other grocery items?
Measure D may force grocery stores and restaurants to recover the cost of the tax by raising the price of everything they sell—not just soda. That means all types of food could get more expensive.
A measure full of loopholes and exemptions is not
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