Voters in Santa Fe, N.M., have rejected a 2-cents-per-ounce tax on distributors of sodas and other sugary beverages that, if passed, would have helped support prekindergarten within the Santa Fe public schools.
The proposed tax was estimated to have been one of the nation’s highest of its kind, projected to generate about $7.7 million in its first year, in preparation for use starting in summer 2018.
Voter turnout of 37.6 percent represented more than came out for a recent mayoral race. The high turnout was primarily the result of contributions from political action committees on both sides, which spent more than $3.1 million on promotional materials for the campaign. Critics painted the proposed tax as an ineffective and unfair overreach of government authority.
A version of this article appeared in the May 17, 2017 edition of Education Week as Voters in Santa Fe, N.M., Reject Beverage Tax to Fund Preschool