Thursday November 4, 2010
Candy Tax Repealed In Washington State
Tacoma, WA — Led by determined efforts of the NCA and a coalition of local confectioners, Washington state voters have overturned a state tax on candy, food and beverages that was approved earlier this year.
Winning with support from more than 62 percent of voters, Initiative 1107 repealed the tax, which will cut collections by some $217 million during the next two fiscal years, sources report.
NCA President Larry Graham says: “NCA and its members sent a clear message to public officials in Washington and beyond that it is not acceptable to avoid making hard but necessary budgetary choices by instituting taxes that discriminate against certain business and burden all consumers. Consumers demonstrated that they can see through these tactics, and that they are willing and able to take the necessary action to end them.”
The Washington State Confectionery Coalition played a major role in the successful repeal of the tax, according to Graham. Local confectioner Pierson Clair, president and CEO of Brown & Haley, led the group of suppliers that wrote letters, met with lawmakers and campaigned throughout the state to overturn the tax, which would have hit hundreds of candy products while exempting others that included specific ingredients.
Clair tells Candy & Snack TODAY: “The NCA has been a magnificent partner with confectioners in the state of Washington, and it truly gives a message to the rest of the confectionery industry in the U.S. that you can take on unfair laws. The confectionery industry in Washington will continue to grow its relationship with elected officials to reinforce the food qualities of confection, and to reinforce the voters' desire not to tax their favorite form of treat.”
Nearly 400,000 signatures were collected to put the repeal on the ballot. The end date for the tax on candy is December 2, 2010, according to Clair.