Ask Congress to Support Your Brewery

Grassroots activism is one of the most powerful tools for small and independent brewers. During the last legislative session, more than half of the U.S. Congress supported lowering the federal excise tax for craft brewers. I’m asking for your help to achieve this level of support with the newly introduced legislation.

On January 30, Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Roy Blunt (R-MO) and Representatives Erik Paulsen (R-MN) and Ron Kind (D-WI) introduced the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act of 2017 (CBMTRA). S. 236 and H.R. 747 would lower the federal excise tax for small and independent brewers.

Similar to legislation of the same name introduced in the 114th Congress, the 2017 CBMTRA would recalibrate excise taxes for brewers to provide more cash flow and allow them to reinvest in their businesses.

This bill reforms the federal excise tax structure on beer by:

  • Reducing the federal excise tax to $3.50 per barrel on the first 60,000 barrels for domestic brewers producing fewer than two million barrels annually and reducing the amount they pay from 60,001 to two million barrels to $16 per barrel.
  • Reducing the federal excise tax to $16 per barrel on the first six million barrels for all other brewers and all beer importers.

Breweries pay more than $2.3 billion in business, personal, and consumption taxes. All brewers are required to pay a federal excise tax in addition to their standard business and payroll taxes. Reducing the federal excise tax would have a major economic impact on the American craft brewing community. If the 2017 CBMTRA passes, all Brewers Association members would see a reduction in their federal excise taxes.

The Brewers Association has created an easy-to-use online form for brewery owners and operators.

The 115th Congress has been actively discussing broad comprehensive tax reform, which provides a real opportunity to move the 2017 CBMTRA forward. We need to show that the legislation has strong bipartisan support, and to do that, we need your help. The Brewers Association has created an easy-to-use online form for brewery owners and operators. Just click here, type in your name, address, and email address, and it will automatically populate an email with your specific information to be sent to your representatives and senators in support of the legislation.

Please take this opportunity to urge your legislators to support the CBMTRA of 2017. Let them know how lowering the federal excise tax would have a positive impact on your brewery, the local community, and their constituents.

Make sure your voice is heard. Contact your legislators today and ask them to support the 2017 CBMTRA.

Katie Marisic is federal affairs manager at the Brewers Association (BA). Based in Washington, D.C. she plans and executes legislative, regulatory and political strategies to drive the associations federal affairs presence on Capitol Hill. Prior to working for the BA, Katie was vice president of political affairs at the National Association of Federal Credit Unions. She got her start in politics working on congressional campaigns during the ’06 and ’08 elections. A Pennsylvania native, Katie is a long time craft brewing supporter. In 2013 she helped to open Atlas Brew Works in Washington, D.C. When she is not advocating for the craft brewing community on Capitol Hill you can sometimes find her pouring beers at a local tasting room.

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