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Cook County sugary drink tax kicks in



COOK COUNTY – Despite lawsuits, delays and protests, the Democrat-controlled Cook County Board of Commissioners finally got their one cent per ounce sugary drink tax into effect Wednesday. 

If the drink is purchased with a SNAP card, there's no tax hike added. Only if the drink is paid for with cash, credit or debit (and the like) cards. Here's how the tax works:

  • Bottled sweetened beverages (soda, sports drinks, flavored water, energy drinks, pre-made sweetened coffee and tea with less than 50% milk content, etc.) – the tax rate is $.01 per ounce of sweetened beverage and is calculated on the fluid ounces contained in the bottle or can.           
  • Sweetened beverages produced from syrups using a beverage dispensing machine and powders using a beverage dispensing machine or by hand mixing (fountain drinks, lemonade, etc.) – tax is applied to the total amount of beverage that the syrup or powder will make per the manufacturers’ directions.
  • For example, a 5 gallon bag of syrup will make 3,840 ounces of beverage – at tax rate of $.01 per ounce of sweetened beverage, the tax for that bag of syrup is $38.40.

Add that new little tax to the state's new 32% income tax hike, the new five cent per gallon gasoline tax hike and, well, there's an air of discontentment and frustration in Cook County today. 

Here's what one person found on her lunch tab today when she ordered a fountain drink at the Qdoba in Schaumburg: 



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  1. And, if the original excuse for this tax was to raise prices to discourage use of these drinks for “health reasons,”, and the taxes raised were for “health care,” then why do fat, overweight, welfare recipients have SNAP cards that exempt them from “paying” it (even though it’s WE taxpayers who are actually doing the paying.)