The Pennsylvania state brewers guild, Brewers of Pennsylvania (BOP), recently secured a major victory for the state’s breweries and their consumers.
Since 2013, the top legislative priority for BOP, as voted on by the BOP membership at each annual meeting, was to re-establish a malt beverage tax credit. There was previously an excise tax credit for brewers’ capital expenditures, but it lapsed in 2008.
In late July, Governor Tom Wolf signed the $1.3 billion revenue package into law that includes a $5 million malt beverage tax credit for brewers. This credit will stimulate craft beer growth and increase state tax revenues. The credit applies to all Pennsylvania breweries, large and small, both production breweries and brewpubs.
Previously, the state’s brewers paid $2.48 per barrel in excise tax on production sold within the state. Now, in-state brewers will be able to obtain a credit for up to $200K per brewery, per year, against that tax. It is stipulated, however, this credit must go towards capital expenditures to expand their breweries.
This passage was due to a massive grassroots effort championed by the BOP. Members sent over 160 emails to the Pennsylvania House and Senate. The outreach was so prolific, a legislator requested the BOP community stop sending emails because he was contacted by so many brewers—he also voted in favor of the bill.
This is a phenomenal example of a state guild’s strength when it stands unified on an approach. Congratulations to the BOP on achieving victory for the entire Pennsylvania brewing industry.