RAYMOND — The 2013 bills are starting to come to the House committees now.
Let me start with a real killer, House Bill HB-168 an act increasing the beer tax. This bill was definitely not a thought out idea, and is not New Hampshire friendly. We have been having an increase of nanobreweries and brew pubs in the state, that are attracting and increasing our tourist business. We need to support them.
Now comes this bill which would impose a tax on: licensed brew pubs, wholesalers, manufacturers, and nanobreweries. The ten-cent increase would be dedicated to the alcohol abuse prevention and treatment fund, which the Department of Health and Human Services would use to establish three new full-time positions in our now bloated government, wasting about $230-260K of this tax per year. How about the wine and alcohol addicts? Will this program be for beer drinkers only? As we try to cut the size of government, here we go, adding three new positions.
The beer maker adds this tax to his price. The distributor and the retailer, each with a thirty-percent mark-up, will be making more profit, as they won’t cut their mark-up to absorb this tax, so the actual tax cost, by the time we the drinker buys the beer, will be more than the original ten-cents.
Also with only beer being taxed, it will narrow the difference between the cost of a beer, and that of other alcohols, so many people will opt to have a glass of wine or a shot instead. This will have a loss of sales on our local beer makers. I’m sure you figured it out, I will be voting No on HB-168. Please call your Representatives and have them vote No too. Let’s kill HB-168.
(Editor’s Note: NH State Representative Mike Kappler can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.)