Senator Markley Opposes Sugar Tax []

February 5, 2015

Article as it appeared on

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Could a state tax on sugary drinks and candy be on the horizon in Connecticut? A State Rep. whose nickname is “Candy Man” is pushing the candy tax plan.

The proposal would impose a one cent tax on every ounce of sugar-sweetened beverages. In other words, buy a 16 oz. beverage and pay a 16 cent tax. The bill is currently before the legislature’s Committee on Children.

ORIGINAL STORY: Tax on soda and candy could be coming to Connecticut

New Haven State Rep. Juan Candelaria is known as the Candy Man and serves on that committee.

“Sweetened beverages impact obesity, diabetes, and it’s more prevalent to low income families, specifically families of color,” said Candelaria.

And it wouldn’t stop there. He wants to impose the tax on candy as well.

“We’re still looking at how that ought to be taxed,” said Candelaria. “Maybe on the volume of sugar in the candy. We’re not quite sure yet how that’s going to work.”

A few states already tax high sugar beverages, but if this was to pass, Connecticut would be the first state to tax candy because of the sugar content.

“We’re taxed too much in this state already and the second thing is, for the government to be trying to regulate every bit of our behavior and nudge us in one direction or another, I think it’s gone far enough and I think people are sick of it,” said State Sen. Joe Markley, R-Southington.

The Governor, who is an admitted candy user, says he understands the laudable goal of the proposal, but thinks awareness has been raised about the dangers of kids and too much sugar.

“I think we’re making progress and I’m not sure that a tax is going to expedite that,” said Governor Malloy.