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• The Seattle Times reports that the city's mayor, Ed Murray, has sent legislation to the City Council that would reduce the per-ounce amount that he'd like to charge in a previously proposed soda tax while adding diet sodas to the list of drinks that would be taxed.

The story says that Murray originally proposed a two cents-per-ounce tax on sugary drinks, but now has amended the proposal so that the tax would be 1.75 cents per ounce. The Times writes that "after Murray’s initial announcement, some suggested the exclusion of beverages with artificial sweeteners would be unfair because affluent white people tend to consume more diet drinks. The revised tax would be applied to all distributors, regardless of size, but would exclude 100 percent fruit juice, medicine, infant formula and milk-based products.

"In February, Murray said the tax would raise $16 million per year. He now says it would raise $23 million per year."

Advertising Age reports that "Procter & Gamble Co. wants to cut a whopping $2 billion in marketing spending over five years, and for the first time is providing details on a broader $10 billion cost-cutting plan launched a year ago."

The cuts include "$1 billion or more in media and around $500 million in agency fees, which comes on top of $600 million of cuts in prior years that reduced P&G's spending there to around $1.4 billion annually."

The moves reflect concerns about P&G's ability to grow in a slow-growth environment in order to grow markets and market share."
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