Soda Ban Debate Sees Its First Action

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Proponents and opponents voice their opinion regarding Bloomberg's unique proposal

The debate over Mayor Bloomberg's soda ban raged on Tuesday, having started at 1 p.m. but lasting over 80 minutes past its initial expected ending time, the New York Timesreports.

Representatives from the board of health, union advocates, consumer advocates, health experts politicians, even a speaker from Auntie Annie's pretzel chain, flocked Long Island City to discuss how restricting the sale of sugar-based drinks over 16 oz. would affect both consumers and suppliers. Sodas this size would be legal in grocery stores, but illegal at street vendors, movie theaters, and restaurants.

But the Times says the expected approval is still likely, and that the next time the two sides met, it could possibly be in a courtroom.

According to the Times' live blog of the event, as of 4:24 p.m., most representatives left the meeting, with only a handful of speakers left.

Mayor Bloomberg initially proposed the ban to reduce obesity in New York City which, according to Bloomberg's numbers, affects 60% of the city's population. Opponents cite there not being a proven connection between sugar and obesity and diabetes.

The meeting wasn't expected to produce any sudden changes.

-Nick Gallinelli

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