This week, the citizens of Alaska’s farthest-north town, Utqiagvik, voted overwhelmingly against imposing a one-cent per ounce beverage tax on teas, lemonades, juice drinks, sports drinks, flavored water, soda and energy drinks. Under this proposed ordinance, the price to purchase a 2-liter bottle would increase by $0.67 while the price to purchase a 12-pack would increase by $1.44. The proposed tax was rejected by nearly 80% of voters.
“Local businesses and consumers don’t like these taxes because they increase the cost of everyday grocery items and raise prices in places like Utqiagvik where costs are already high,” said Brent Miller, President of the Alaska Beverage Association. “We agree with local retailers that there are better ways to address budget priorities than new taxes on specific products that dramatically raise prices for consumers.”