By Andrew Thomason
Illinois Statehouse News
SPRINGFIELD — If every man, woman and child in Illinois were to drink 18 ounces of sugary beverages each day, state coffers could get an additional $1.4 billion.
A new study by the Cook County Department of Public Health said Illinoisans are set to drink 6.6 billion, 12-ounce cans of soda, sports drinks and other sugary beverages in 2011.
That could mean big bucks for the state if lawmakers were to enact a 2-cents per ounce tax. The tax would be levied on regular soda, diet soda and other sugar-sweetened drinks. A standard 12-ounce can of soda would cost 24 cents more under the proposed tax. The study also suggested that the state and private employers would save at least $200 million in health-care costs by imposing the tax.