STUMP » Articles » Cook County Soda Tax: The Current Mess » 9 August 2017, 17:53

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Cook County Soda Tax: The Current Mess  


9 August 2017, 17:53

A new lawsuit!

Lawsuit: Walgreens ‘wrongfully’ taxed unsweetened drinks

Walgreens has been improperly collecting Cook County’s new sweetened beverage tax on unsweetened drinks, according to a class action lawsuit filed Monday in Cook County Circuit Court.

Vince De Leon, a northwest suburban Schaumburg resident, filed the two-count suit on behalf of himself and anyone who has paid the new tax on an unsweetened drink at a Walgreens location. It alleges that Walgreens violated the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act and was unjustly enriched by collecting the taxes.

The Sweetened Beverage Tax Ordinance went into effect on Aug. 2 and adds an extra penny-per-ounce tax to sugar-sweetened beverages, including everything from sodas to sweetened iced teas. The tax does not apply to unsweetened drinks such as bottled water, 100% juice and sparkling water.

Oh, and another lawsuit!

McDonald’s, Walgreens hit with lawsuits over Cook County soda pop tax

Two of the Chicago area’s biggest corporate names are being sued over allegedly bungling the rollout of Cook County’s new penny-per-ounce sweetened beverage tax, with Walgreens accused of taxing unsweetened beverages and McDonald’s accused of essentially taxing the tax.

Two of the Chicago area’s biggest corporate names are being sued over allegedly bungling the rollout of Cook County’s new penny-per-ounce sweetened beverage tax, with Walgreens accused of taxing unsweetened beverages and McDonald’s accused of essentially taxing the tax.

Both of these lawsuits are seeking class action status.

I wonder what the courts will do with these short-lived operational screw-ups.


Preckwinkle comments:

Oh, what’s this? People replying to Preckwinkle’s tweet. Hmmm.


About Preckwinkle threatening to try to get $17 million out of the retailers who sued to stop the tax….

….never mind.

County Won’t Seek Millions In Soda-Tax Damages

Cook County government will no longer seeks $17 million in damages from a retail organization that temporarily stymied the new sweetened-beverage tax.

A spokesperson for Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle says now that the latest attempt to block the penny-an-ounce tax have been unsuccessful, it’s best to move on.

Maybe she saw the reaction the tax just by itself is getting, and thought to stop digging the political hole she’s in.

Or maybe she noticed that the court wasn’t too enamored with the idea when it was brought up in court.

The basis of the $17 million is supposedly how much the tax is to bring in per month.

Let’s see what it actually brings in, shall we? We’ll have to check back in in a few months… once the retailers finally figure out how to impose the tax.


And here I am:

I was responding to the fact check on the Cook County soda taxes. Yes, it’s the highest soda tax.

And it’s higher than alcohol taxes in many places.

You figure it out.

Here ya go — Bud is cheaper than Coke:

I’m sure Budweiser is so much healthier than Coke.

Btw, a “tall boy” is 25 ounces (if you don’t see where that is on the receipt).

Here are calorie counts.

The Bud tallboy is 285 calories.

20oz of Coke is 240 calories.

Oh, Bud actually does have fewer calories per ounce (11.4 cal per oz vs. 12 cal per oz.)

It’s totally rational!


Finally, “free” refills now cost 16 cents:


Some retailers have decided to short circuit the whole thing. This tax is operationally insane, not to mention really pissing off potential customers.

The low margin biz where a lot of this soda is sold is just saying — forget it.

Cook County merchants left to figure out how to adjust practices, limit consumer options to collect ‘pop tax’

CHICAGO — Tanya Triche Dawood, general counsel for the Illinois Retail Merchants Association (IRMA), frets that the new, penny-per-ounce sweetened beverage tax in Cook County couldn’t have come at a worse time.

Dawood said she already knows restaurants that have stopped selling fountain drinks from behind the counter and others that have ceased offering free refills since the tax officially went into effect on August 2.

“Many of them can’t afford to eat this tax,” she said. “And in a lot instances, the process of trying to figure out how to collect on the new tax just becomes too complicated.”

IRMA appealed a lower court’s July 28 ruling to shoot down its request to stop the tax from taking effect, but that appeal has also been denied.

Dawood said retailers are expected to solve the added riddle of how they are suppose to collect the tax when customers make purchases with cards issued under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which are exempted by federal rules from sales and other local taxes.

“Retailers are being left to figure out how to get reimbursed, and it will cost them even more money as they’re forced to purchase new software to track purchases,” she said. “It’s a lot of money to have to spend just to be able to collect.”

While county officials have insisted that their primary motivation for enacting the tax is improving public health, several media outlets have reported the new legislation will raise as much as $200 million in added annual revenue.

Again, let’s see what actually gets collected.

If everybody just stops selling soda, then moral victory!

But I bet even if all the soda in the world disappeared, people would still be fat. (Says the non-soda-drinking fattie.)

Compilation of Chicago posts

Compilation of Illinois posts

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