Illinois Lawmakers Consider Taxing Sugary Drinks
Lawmakers scrambling to find money to fix Illinois’ multi-billion dollar deficit are looking to sugary drinks as one potential source of revenue.
Taxing distributors of sodas and other sugary beverages was among the revenue-generating ideas a group of lawmakers proposed to Gov. Bruce Rauner and other leaders last week. They’re trying to finally end an epic budget impasse.
The proposal would impose a penny-per-ounce tax on sugar-sweetened beverages, syrups or powders. Estimates vary on how much money the tax would collect: anywhere from $375 million to $600 million.
The state is facing a $5 billion deficit and growing.
Lawmakers are also considering raising the state income from 3-point-75 percent to 4-point-85 percent and making budget cuts as part of an overall deal contingent on Rauner getting pro-business, union-weakening reforms.