Cook County, IL Likely to Repeal Soda Tax
As previously reported on this blog, a Cook County Ordinance that imposes a $0.01 per ounce tax on the retail sale of sweetened beverages became effective August 2. The unpopular tax applies to bottled sweetened beverages and makes soda sold in Chicago among the most expensive in the country.
Cook County Commissioner Sean Morrison announced on Friday that he had reached an agreement with of 11 of his fellow commissioners to support the Sweetened Beverage Tax Repeal Ordinance. That would be enough votes to override a veto by Cook County Board President Tony Preckwinkle. The ordinance would eliminate the beverage tax effective December 1, 2017, which is the beginning of Cook County’s Fiscal Year. The Repeal Ordinance will be called for a vote at today’s (Oct. 10) meeting of the Cook County Finance Committee.
The Cook County Sweetened Beverage Tax was originally passed to eliminate a $200 million budget shortfall. Addressing concerns about the budget shortfall once the tax is eliminated, Morrison stated, “I’m committed to working in a bipartisan and constructive manner with all of my board colleagues, President Preckwinkle and her administration to take the needed steps to find the fiscal solutions to create a balanced and responsible 2018 Budget for Cook County.”