Say NO To The WV Sugary Drinks Tax!

The West Virginia Legislature is considering several proposals to tax sugar-sweetened beverages like soda, juice drinks, sports drinks, coffee drinks and iced teas. This tax is in addition to the sales tax West Virginians already pay on soda.

The bills introduced include: creating a new beverage tax of one-cent per ounce; creating a new beverage tax of two-cents per ounce; increase the current tax per 16-ounce beverage from one cent to five cents; increase the current tax on syrup from 80 cents per gallon to $4 per gallon; increase powder mixes to make soft drinks from one-cent per ounce to 5 cent per ounce.

A one-cent tax per ounce tax may not sound like a lot but it quickly adds up. A two-liter bottle would cost an additional $0.68. For a 12-pack of cans, it would cost an extra $1.44.

Worse, a two-cent per ounce grocery tax means a 12-pack of 12-ounce soda cans could cost an extra $2.88, a 2-liter bottle of soda could set you back an extra $1.36 and a 10-pack of 6-oz. juice boxes could add $1.20 to the price. In some cases the price would be more tax than product.

If these bills are enacted, hardworking West Virginia families will be left paying this hefty tax.

The proposal applies to any sugar-sweetened beverage – that could translate to more than a thousand beverages like sodas, teas, flavored waters, juice drinks, energy drinks, coffee drinks, and sports drinks.

Neighborhood grocery stores, corner stores, restaurants, movie theaters and other local businesses that rely on beverage sales for a good part of their income will be hit especially hard. They will lose sales when people cross the border to shop in stores out of state to avoid the tax. And they’ll do the rest of their shopping while in that state. Losing business like that means a loss of income for employees whose hours are trimmed, or worse, jobs are cut.

Go here to make your voice heard! Or use the info below to contact the legislators in our southern WV markets by phone. Want to read more about how this would impact West Virginia jobs, and what happened when Philly enacted a similar tax in the city? Click here. (PDF files, will open on any modern mobile device or computer)

Joe Ellington 304-340-3269
Marty Gearheart 304-340-3179
John Shott 304-340-3252

Ed Evans 304-340-3165

Shirley Love 304-340-3337
Kayla Kessinger 304-340-3197

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