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Seattle mayor adds diet pop to proposed soda tax

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SEATTLE (AP) — Seattle Mayor Ed Murray is reducing the per-ounce amount charged by his proposed soda tax while adding diet pop to the list of beverages covered by the levy.

The Seattle Times reports those are the main changes in the legislation the mayor is sending to the City Council on Thursday.

Under Murray’s initial plan, announced during his State of the City address in February, distributors of sugary drinks would have paid 2 cents per ounce. The revised tax would cover sodas such as Coke and Pepsi, energy and sports drinks such as Red Bull and Gatorade, fruit drinks such as Sunny D, sweetened teas such and bottled coffees.

And the tax on distributors would be 1.75 cents rather than 2 cents per ounce.

In February, Murray said the tax would raise $16 million per year. He now says it would raise $23 million per year, most of which would be spent on programs that help low-income and vulnerable children.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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