The city of Philadelphia prevailed for a second time in the lawsuit brought against the administration over the soda tax with five members of a seven judge Commonwealth Court panel affirming the ruling of a lower court and allowing the Philadelphia Beverage Tax to remain in effect.
"The Commonwealth Court judges gave thorough consideration to the plaintiffs’ claims and an overwhelming majority came to the same conclusion as Common Pleas Court: that the American Beverage Association’s arguments are without merit," City Solicitor Sozi Pedro Tulante said in a statement.
Almost immediately after Common Pleas Court Judge Gary S. Glazer dismissed the case last December, the plaintiffs – a group of several local soda consumers; Philadelphia restaurants including City View Pizza and John's Roast Pork; and several associations that represent different parts of the beverage industry – appealed, and have pledged to continue to appeal the case to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
A coalition opposed to the tax that includes some of the plaintiffs, known as Ax the Bev Tax, was not immediately available for comment. Shanin Specter, a partner with Kline & Specter, the firm representing the plaintiffs, had one simple statement on the court's decision: "We will appeal."
In a 34-page opinion, Judge Michael H.Wojcik, on behalf of the majority, wrote the "objectors cannot prevail on the merits of their claims regarding the purported invalidity of the [Philadelphia Beverage Tax].
Read the full story about the legal battle on PBJ.com.
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