Hales wants to stop use of food stamps for soda - KPTV - FOX 12

Hales wants to stop use of food stamps for soda

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Portland Mayor Charlie Hales is one of 18 mayors reviving a push against letting government food vouchers be used to buy soda and other sugary drinks.

In a letter to congressional leaders Tuesday, the mayors say it's "time to test and evaluate approaches limiting" the use of the subsidies for sugar-laden beverages.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg's office released the letter. Bloomberg is known for trying to bar eateries from selling sugary drinks in big sizes. He also has tried before to stop food stamps from going to buy soda.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture turned down a 2010 request to let New York City do that.

The USDA declined to comment on Tuesday's letter. The American Beverage Association had no immediate comment.

A statement from Hales' office said the push is not only to prevent obesity and other diseases, but to prevent cuts to the federal food stamp program used by 47 million Americans.

Copyright 2013 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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