Sugary drinks targeted in new Washington state tax proposal

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — A tax proposal under debate by Washington state lawmakers could raise the price of soda, juice and sweetened coffee drinks. KING-TV reported a state Senate bill would charge beverage distributors 1.75 cents for every ounce of a sweetened drink that has more than 20 calories in a 12-ounce serving. The measure would increase the cost of a 12-ounce can of regular soda by 21 cents. Sponsors of the bill say Washington would have the first statewide tax on sweet drinks. Funds raised by the tax would support public health programs and fund a health equity account for communities of color.