DC Council Extends Tax to Sodas, Energy Drinks and Sports Drinks

WASHINGTON -- The D.C. Council has approved a budget that extends the city's 6 percent sales tax to sports drinks, energy drinks and soda.

The tax approved Wednesday as part of next year's budget is expected to generate $7.9 million in the next year. The money will be spent on school programs promoting health.

The tax will apply to sports drinks like Gatorade, energy drinks like Red Bull and soft drinks -- including diet drinks. Drinks such as fruit juice, milk, tea, water or coffee would not have a sales tax applied to them.

The tax was vigorously opposed by the beverage industry and many local retailers. They argued the tax hits families at a difficult time and could hurt local businesses by pushing people to buy their groceries outside the city.