‘Damn!’ Outrageous Philadelphia tax showing up on receipts reminds why blue states turned red

Philadelphia residents may find themselves traveling out of their neighborhoods to avoid a tax that just went into effect..

A bill, signed in June by Philadelphia’s Democratic Mayor Jim Kenney, approved a 1.5-cents-per-ounce tax on sugary beverages and went into effect on January 1.

And while the increase seems trivial at first glance, the effect of the new tax proved substantial as shown in one shopper’s bill from a Philadelphia grocery store on Sunday.

A $5.99 case of Propel fitness water saw a 50 percent increase in the shopper’s bill.

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The first major U.S. city to pass a sweetened beverage tax, Philadelphia was commended by Kenney for making  a “historic investment in our neighborhoods and in our education system” with the tax expected to bring in an  estimated $91 million, NPR reported in June.

Residents and the beverage industry opposed the tax which passed Philadelphia’s City Council by a vote of 13-4.

A beverage industry lawsuit against the soft drink tax was dismissed in December, according to Forbes.

Of course, the increase in cost will be passed on to consumers who purchase the sugary drinks at restaurants and from vending machines.

As Philadelphians faced the new sticker shock of beverage purchases, they began to travel into other suburbs in order to avoid the extra price. Some stores were even imposing limits on soda purchases after those outside the immediate community came in to stock up, the Delaware Valley News reported.

“I work too hard to give my money away to other people,” a man named Dave told the publication. “Kenney, that idiot is done. I am not voting for him or any moron on city council that let this pass.”

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Pollster Frank Luntz dished up the obvious in a tweet on Monday.

People took to social media to express their shock at the price increase which, in some cases, rivaled the tax collected on alcoholic beverages.

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Frieda Powers

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