Alcohol Tax Opposition Speaks Out in Frankfort

by scrosby on February 9, 2009

From Kentucky Public Radio’s Tony McVeigh

The alcoholic beverage industry is trying to derail the tax train that appears to leaving the station in the Kentucky General Assembly.

In the ongoing effort to fill an almost half-billion dollar hole in the state budget, House and Senate leaders are considering raising alcohol and cigarette taxes.

But the alcoholic beverage industry says, not so fast. Industry representatives, like Maker’s Mark President Bill Samuels, descended on the State Capitol to argue against tax hikes.

“If we weren’t taxed at the upper echelon of all the states – and I think there are only three or four who tax our native product more than we tax it ourselves – I personally would say, we need to pay our fair share,” says Samuels.

Last Friday, top House and Senate leaders said they hoped to push a tax bill through the House by Wednesday and through the Senate by Friday.

If they meet the schedule, the governor could have a bill on his desk by Friday night.

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