Massachusetts lawmakers once again consider adding more taxes to sugary drinks

Boston Statehouse

BOSTON (WWLP) – This isn’t the first time that this bill has been considered on Beacon Hill. Health experts believe that additional taxes on sugary drinks would help people make healthier decisions, but residents across the state are pushing back on that narrative.

House Bill 29-72 impose an excise tax on distributors of certain drinks with added sugar. The bill’s sponsors believe that the additional tax would encourage distributors to produce healthier products, and in turn customers would have additional healthy alternatives to choose from.

Opponents of the bill argue that people will still buy their favorite sodas and soft drinks regardless of the price, and if there is a price increase low income residents would be hurt the most.

Right now, zero states impose excise taxes on soda and soft drinks but cities like Philadelphia, Seattle, and San Francisco do. The tax does generate additional revenue for the cities but people still have the option to go somewhere else to buy their favorite drinks at a lower price.

The revenue committee didn’t vote on the bill on Monday but they did hear compelling testimony on both sides of this issue. 22News will continue to follow this and provide you with an update as soon as it is available.

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