Richmond soda tax measure opponents spend millions

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Soda tax

(AP image)

RICHMOND, Calif. (AP) – A group backed by the beverage industry is spending millions of dollars to defeat a soda tax measure on the Nov. 6 ballot in the San Francisco Bay area city of Richmond.

The Contra Costa Times reports that the “No on N” campaign has spent $2.2 million compared to just $25,000 by supporters of the tax. The groups’ campaign finance statements were released on Friday.

The opposition group is led by the beverage industry lobbying organization, the American Beverage Association.

Richmond’s measure would levy a penny-per-ounce tax on businesses that sell soft drinks and other sugar-sweetened beverages.

Supporters say soda is linked to childhood obesity, and the tax would reduce its consumption. Opponents say it would cost businesses millions of dollars in lost sales and raise prices for consumers.

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