Controversies

Distributors say layoffs coming because of Philly soda tax

Two months into Philadelphia’s 1.5 cents per ounce soda tax, distributors are reporting 30-50 percent declines in sales and saying that hundreds of layoffs are coming.

ShopRite told Philly.com that it will have to lay off 300 workers, while one of the largest distributors said it will have to slash 20 percent of its workforce.

The soda tax comes on top of the existing 8 percent sales tax, adding $2.16 to the cost of 12-pack of soda.

Mayor Jim Kenney said the companies are being greedy for passing the cost of the tax onto consumers instead of reducing their bottom lines.

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