Appeals court: NYC soda ban is unconstitutional

New York's mayor has proposed a ban on large servings of sugary sodas.</p>

New York's mayor has proposed a ban on large servings of sugary sodas.

The Big Gulp is here to stay in the Big Apple -- at least for now.

An appeals court on Tuesday upheld a lower court ruling that struck down New York City's ban on the sale of sugary drinks larger than 16 ounces in city restaurants, stadiums and other venues.

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The four-judge panel called the ban unconstitutional, and ruled the city's Board of Health overstepped its authority when it passed the restrictions last fall.

The ruling was a unanimous decision.

It dealt a major blow to Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who had touted the ban as a way to fight rising obesity in the Big Apple.

However, the city's law department promised a quick appeal.

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"Today's decision is a temporary setback, and we plan to appeal this decision as we continue the fight against the obesity epidemic," Bloomberg told The Associated Press in a statement.

The American soft-drink industry, joined by several New York restaurant and business groups, filed the lawsuit to overturn the ban last fall.

State Supreme Court Justice Milton Tingling struck down the law in March, the day before it was to take effect, calling it "arbitrary and capricious."