Yesterday, Philadelphia’s Council Committee of the Whole voted positively on an amended version of Mayor Jim Kenney’s 3-cent per ounce sugary drink tax. The version that the committee passed by voice vote was for a 1.5-cent per ounce tax and also includes diet drinks. A final City Council vote on the sugary drink tax is scheduled for June 16th.
Philadelphians for a Fair Future, the American Heart Association, and other groups that have supported the tax, which would help fund citywide Pre-K, schools, libraries, parks, and rec centers for city kids and families, consider the 1.5 cents a significant victory.
The hearing at City Hall drew significant attention from advocates on both sides of the debate. Teamsters, who oppose the tax, circled the block in beverage trucks, while families and public health advocates, who support the tax, rallied with signs.
For regular updates on this campaign for a fair and healthy future for Philadelphia, follow @AHAPhilly and @fairfuturephl on Twitter and the American Heart Association – Philadelphia and Our Kids are Worth It on Facebook.