Philadelphia’s soda tax is one controversial piece of legislation. Two years after it went into effect, debates over its merits and faults continue. Now the owner of a West Philly ShopRite has blamed it for the closing of his store. Surely this won’t be the last story you read about the tax on sweetened beverages. Perhaps this time last year you were prepared to read the last story about Eagles QB Nick Foles and the playoffs. You would have been sadly mistaken. The Super Bowl MVP is gearing up for another postseason. Honestly, can you believe it?

— Aubrey Nagle (@aubsn, morningnewsletter@philly.com)

A ShopRite store in West Philadelphia will close in March and its owner is placing blame on Philadelphia’s tax on sweetened beverages.

Owner Jeff Brown, who has won praise for embracing progressive policies and opening stores in food deserts, said Wednesday that his store has seen a 23 percent loss in sales.

Brown’s announcement is the latest attack on Mayor Jim Kenney’s signature legislation and comes at the start of an election year for the mayor and City Council.

It’s been just 11 months since Nick Foles led the Eagles to a Super Bowl victory. No one was quite sure what to think of Foles a year ago, but no one’s doubting him now as he leads the Birds to Sunday’s wild-card playoff game in Chicago.

Eagles fans might be stressed about the Bears, but they could find comfort in Doug Pederson’s lighthearted demeanor. He and Bears coach Matt Nagy shared a “servant mentality” as Eagles assistants back in the day, he said Wednesday. Nagy was even once an Eagles quarterback — for a day.

Want to join the Eagles in the Windy City this weekend? Megabus is running a Philly special.

Philadelphia residents are receiving letters bearing the city’s official seal, a City Hall address, and the signatures of Philadelphia City Council members. But they’re paid for by a private company’ to promote their water and sewer line warranty.

Due to a partnership between American Water Resources (AWR) and the Philadelphia Energy Authority, AWR can use the official-looking letters to market protection plans to Philly homeowners. In exchange, the authority gets 20 percent of the sales and a $100,000 annual payment. The arrangement has made some residents wary.

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Opinions

January 3, 2019
Signe Wilkinson
January 3, 2019

“A primary purpose of Mummers is to poke fun at our elected leaders, and, given the backlash, this obviously worked. I’d love to see more people of color get involved in Mummers. I have a lot of fun, and it’s a great Philadelphia tradition." — Darrel Young, a black Mummer who played Jay-Z in Tuesday’s Mummers Parade, on being accused of wearing blackface.

What we’re reading

Pete Schiavo, a Hemostasis Tech, becomes emotional while talking about how much he loves his job, at Pennsylvania Hospital, Friday, December 7, 2018.
JESSICA GRIFFIN / Staff Photographer
Pete Schiavo, a Hemostasis Tech, becomes emotional while talking about how much he loves his job, at Pennsylvania Hospital, Friday, December 7, 2018.

Your Daily Dose of | Pressure

“Pete the Groin Crusher" might be the most memorable and beloved face in Pennsylvania Hospital. The wisecracking hemostasis tech has crushed 10,000 patients' groins without breaking a sweat.