Voters in Alaska town reject proposed soda tax
UTQIAGVIK, Alaska (AP) — Voters in the nation’s northernmost community have rejected a proposal to impose Alaska’s first tax on sugary sodas and other sweetened beverages.
Voters in Utqiagvik (oot-kay-AH’-vik) turned down the ballot measure Tuesday. According to unofficial city results, 497 votes were cast against it and another 126 supported it.
The measure called for a 1-cent tax per 1 ounce (28 grams) of soda, energy drinks and sugar-sweetened beverages sold in the community. Fountain drinks also would have been taxed by volume.
The proposal did not cover 100% fruit or vegetable juices, milk products, medicinal drinks, baby formula, weight-loss drinks or alcohol. Zero-calorie sodas and bottled water also would have been exempt.
Most of the tax proceeds would have been reserved for youth programs and activities sponsored or conducted by the city.