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Judge voids New York soda ban, calling it 'arbitrary and capricious'

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“The court ruling provides a sigh of relief to New Yorkers and thousands of small businesses in New York City that would have been harmed by this arbitrary and unpopular ban," the association said in a statement. "With this ruling behind us, we look forward to collaborating with city leaders on solutions that will have a meaningful and lasting impact on the people of New York City.”

A coalition of small-business organizations had asked the judge to delay the start date of the ban until the State Supreme Court ruled on the case. The delay wasn’t necessary due to Judge Tingling’s 11th-hour ruling, which said the soda ban required city council approval and was arbitrary in its application because some retailers – like convenience and drug stores – were not affected by the ban.

“It is arbitrary and capricious because it applies to some but not all food establishments in the city, it excludes other beverages that have significantly higher concentrations of sugar sweeteners and/or calories on suspect grounds, and the loopholes inherent in the rule ... serve to gut the purpose of the rule,” he wrote.

Bloomberg disagreed. "We think the judge is totally in error in the way he interpreted the law," he said after the ruling was issued Monday. "Being the first to do something is never easy. When we began this, we knew we would face lawsuits.... We’re confident today’s decision will ultimately be reversed."

Indeed, the Mayor’s Office said it plans to appeal the ruling. 

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