A friend of mine sent me a link to an article in the San Jose Mercury News today about a proposed increase to the tax on alcohol in the Sate of California. Jim Beall, D-San Jose, has proposed that a ten cent per drink “fee” not tax be added to the sale of beer, wine and spirits in the state. He is calling it a fee and not a tax because it will only need a majority vote to pass not a super majority that a tax would need. He is doing this because he proposed a similar bill last year and it failed miserably. This fee does not sound like a lot at first but when you look at the numbers a little bit closer it is a staggering increase to the fee that is in place now. This fee would raise the now 20 cents a gallon fee to a staggering $1.27 witch is a more than 500% increase and the increase is even higher on wine which comes in at a over1200% increase. This fee when based down to the consumer means roughly a 75 cents per six pack increase at the cash register. Jim Beall says that this bill is going to help the people of the state by funding alcohol related programs in the state. But what he does not bother to bring up is what effect this is going to have on both the wine and beer industries which employ hundreds of thousands of people in the state. We need to stand up and fight to stop this bill from being passed.
Here is the link to the full article.