Initiative 1634, Grocery taxes
Local governments looking for more tax money will have to look somewhere else than soda.
Shawn Vestal: Another election year, another record high for corporate spending on Washington’s initiatives
Corporations are “speaking” louder than any other entity in this election by spending tens of millions of dollars on statewide initiatives.
Washington voters will find two tax measures on the ballot. They should reject new taxes that will hinder economic growth and every Washingtonian’s pocket book by voting no on a carbon tax and yes on a ban on grocery taxes.
Millions of dollars pour into initiative campaigns, fueling ads on television, the internet and in the mailbox.
The I-1634 campaign is blanketing the airwaves with advertisements that raise the specter of looming local grocery taxes, while making little or no mention of the sweetened beverages produced by the companies funding the campaign.
Soda industry backs an initiative that would keep local governments from putting taxes on soda or groceries.
Two more initiatives have enough signatures to go on the November ballot.
Some groups spend big to get signatures for ballot initiatives.
This year, four enormous sugar-water companies – the makers of Coke, Pepsi, Dr Pepper, and Red Bull – have spent almost $5 million to prohibitively outlaw any future taxes on their products.
Supporters of an anti-tax initiative say they fear a local tax on food would hurt working families, even though they concede that no city or county in Washington has such a tax.
Three initiatives submit far more signatures than they need to qualify for the ballot, but Secretary of State Kim Wyman says one proposal’s petitions raise legal concerns.
Voters likely to be asked whether to prevent new local taxes on soda and other groceries.