When a discriminatory tax is proposed, local business owners are often the first to step up in opposition. This is because they understand firsthand the negative impact such a tax will have on their business and employees. It is no different in Boulder, Colo., where John Hayes, who is president and CEO of Ball Corp., is voicing his concerns about the city’s proposal to tax beverages.

In an opinion piece published in the Daily Camera, Hayes says Boulder residents shouldn’t be fooled by who is behind the tax proposal - “a special interest group that is primarily funded by organizations who don't call Boulder home is advocating for a significant tax increase on sugar-sweetened beverages.”

Hayes says this proposal, while being sold as a public health measure, is in reality “a tax increase that will hurt Boulder businesses who contribute so much to our community.”

Local businesses are a vital part of the economic engine that drives the economies of cities and towns across our nation. Shouldn’t governments be working to improve business environments instead of burdening local businesses with more taxes and red tape?

Hayes says Boulder is “a community that comes together to solve complex problems and to help our neighbors in need.” And a tax that singles out one item in the grocery cart and punishes local businesses is no way to solve the complex challenge of obesity. Instead, he says, the residents and businesses of Boulder should do what they do best - “engage constructively to make a real impact on these issues.”