It is well established that taxes on every day beverages hurt local, small businesses the most – neighborhood mainstays like corner stores, groceries, diners, restaurants and theaters that provide jobs for many families. The general manager of a small business in Cathedral City, Calif., is warning lawmakers about the real and devastating consequences of these taxes.
Ted Hane, general manager of Mary Pickford Theatre, outlines in a piece for the Desert Sun the damaging impact beverage taxes have had in Philadelphia and Cook County, Ill., where the tax was repealed just two months after it took effect.
Hane wrote about the Philadelphia tax, “… local businesses are feeling the dramatic effects of the tax: after job losses in the hundreds, and reports of total sales losses over 10 percent for many businesses, Philadelphia’s City Controller recently stated, ‘The overwhelming majority of businesses that carry products subject to the Philadelphia Beverage Tax feel a significant impact as a result of the tax, [and] the tax has had detrimental effects.’”
Hane also points out that many different types of businesses are harmed by unfair beverage taxes. “To be clear, it is not just grocery stores and restaurants that would be impacted, but also entertainment venues like the Mary Pickford Theater, hotels, and any retail outlet or establishment that provides or sells beverages.”
Lawmakers considering a beverage tax should learn from the mistakes of other places that are suffering the destructive consequences of a beverage tax and listen to the people who stand to lose the most.