States renew push for taxes on sugary drinks

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Connecticut’s new governor is pushing for a statewide tax on sugary drinks, nearly three decades after the last U.S. state imposed one.

But Democratic Gov. Ned Lamont is bracing for a fight, predicting industry lobbying will be “ferocious.”

Taxes on soda and other sugary drinks have taken effect in recent years in a handful of cities. But lobbying from the beverage industry and its allies has been credited with helping to block statewide proposals that usually pop up annually in state legislatures.

The National Conference of State Legislatures says four states — Arkansas, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia — have excise taxes on sugar-added beverages. But the most recent is 1992.

This week the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Heart Association called for soda taxes in an effort to reduce consumption.

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