You'll Pay More at the Packy if this Massachusetts Bill Passes...
If a Massachusetts State Rep has her way the tax of your beer and booze is going to double along with a new tax on sugary beverages according to an article posted to MassLive.

According to the article, State Rep. Kay Khan introduced a bill (Bill H.2973) that would double the state’s excise tax on alcohol sold in the state. Khan, a Democrat representing Newton, foresees a net revenue gain of $435 million that she would like to go towards funding substance abuse and other health programs.

Vodkas Rhum Gin Alcohol liquors drinks bottles on a bar stand

Massachusetts has different tax rates on different types of adult beverages based on the volume of alcohol in it. For instance, beer is taxed at a lower level than the hard stuff. According to the MassLive article, if the bill does pass the excise tax on all alcohol would double in the state.

Bottles and glasses of alcohol drinks

There is a difference between the excise tax and the sales tax. The MassLive article explains the excise tax as a tax on the producer of the product that will likely pass that extra cost on to the consumer at the point of purchase. The sales tax comes directly out of the pocket of the consumer at the cash register.

Bottles Of Wine On Display In Delicatessen

The association that represents Massachusetts Packy's is not happy with the proposal saying it would drive Mass residents over the border to other states or online to purchase their happy juice. It is already common-place for those living in the eastern part of the state to make a run to New Hampshire to pick up booze where there is no sales tax and an NH State Liquor Store just about every 20 miles. At an NH State Liquor Store, you can only buy the wine and the hard stuff. Beer is not sold.


The other proposed bill (Bill H.2972) would increase the tax on beverages with more than 7.5 grams of sugar according to the MassLive article. The proposed tax increase would be 3% per ounce. For a point of reference, a can of Coke contains 38 grams of sugar per can. The increase to the state’s coffers would be in the ballpark of $368 million according to Representative Khan.

Drink Up
Keith Bell

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