Anti-ban on soda regulations proposed in Wisconsin

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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -- As some states talk about banning certain sizes of sugary drinks, a Wisconsin lawmaker wants to ban any possible ban on how big, nutritious, or calorie-laden a soda can be.

Republican assemblywoman Pat Strachota is responding to New York mayor Michael Bloomberg's attempt to ban certain soda sizes.
She wants a provision in Governor Scott Walker's budget after hearing Madison and Stevens Point were both considering soda size ordinances.

“I thought to get out front, so none in the state would think it was appropriate to make those decisions or bans,” said Strachota.

Democratic assemblyman Steve Doyle says proposing an "anti-ban" could hurt the ability of local governments if they decide to propose and approve them.

“I don't think any communities would actually adopt the ban, but if there is some town that wants too; if that's what the people get behind and they agree that that's a good idea, I don't know why big brother in Madison needs to tell a local community what its values and priorities should be,” said Steve Doyle, Democratic State Representative with the 94th District.

But Strachota says anything like New York ban in Wisconsin could hurt local business.

“This bill is a lot about small business and movie theaters, convenience stores. I think it makes it very difficult when community puts those regulations on these types of business,” said Strachota.

Doyle says he would not support a ban on soda sizes if he had the chance to vote on it. He also does not support an "anti-ban" on the issue.

“I would rather us follow up by saying, let’s educate people on why they shouldn't drink soft drinks, rather on whether they can or cannot,” added Doyle.

Strachota says she is confident the revision will pass. It would eventually be up to the governor to sign the budget proposal into law.

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