As we begin our advocacy in 2017, we are again focused on the long-term drive to impose a health impact fee on sugary beverages because of their contribution to the epidemics of Type 2 Diabetes, obesity and related diseases. Half the state is now believed to be pre diabetic and we are already losing or spending $37 billion per year with only 8% of the population diagnosed with the disease. We are looking at up to $200 billion per year of losses to the state in the future: a disaster waiting to happen. The Legislature in California has twice stopped AB 2782, the Healthy California Fund, which would impose a 2 cent per oz fee on distributors of specific sugary beverages. This refusal to act on the part of the Assembly Health Committee is unconscionable. As it has been written, the current estimate is that AB 2782 would raise $2.3 billion per year for a fund that would be used to prevent disease, particularly in our young people. School food, physical and nutrition education would be greatly improved. Preventive healthcare clinics for low income families would be made more robust and hundreds of millions in grants would be made available to communities to build thousands of fresh food sources and outlets. Urban and periurban farms would be spawned and nutrition incentive programs that double the purchasing power of SNAP and WIC families would be supplied with millions more in funding to ensure people can afford fruits and vegetables. The article below clarifies how poor nutrition science has provided an excuse to legislators who would rather receive campaign funds from the beverage industry than protect the health of the state's families. It is time to speak truth to power. We need nutritionists and legislators to stop kowtowing to a shameless industry that is destroying the nation's health.