Colorado gov.’s plan to tax soda and candy gets cheers, jeers
November 16, 2009
For Libertarians, it is a step toward social engineering.
But to Gov. Bill Ritter, a proposal to tax candy and soda-pop sales is nothing more than a way to help close a widening budget gap.
Regardless of the motivation, if Ritter’s idea is adopted next year by the legislature, Colorado would become one of a growing number of states and localities going after candy bars and soft drinks.
And, like cigarettes and liquor before them, sweet treats would achieve a special status as items whose consumption is discouraged by the very governments that become dependent on the revenue they provide.
Ritter’s office estimates that eliminating the sales-tax exemption for candy and soft drinks would generate $17.9 million and help avoid deeper cuts to schools and colleges.
“We thought that people would be willing to pay 3 cents on a dollar candy bar,” said Ritter, who once spent three years running a nutrition center in Zambia before resuming his law career. “We just viewed it (allowing the sales tax) as something that doesn’t do anything to our (state’s) competitiveness.”
For more of this Denver Post story: http://www.denverpost.com/ci_13791335