Skip to comments.DC City Council Pushes for Higher Taxes on Consumers
Posted on 05/04/2012 8:17:58 AM PDT by 92nina
Despite the fact that economists across the political spectrum concede that economic expansion is a more advantageous approach to raising revenue than raising tax rates, some members of the DC City Council are pushing forward with a job-killing tax hike even though Mayor Gray has provided a sensible alternative that would loosen restrictions pertaining to when businesses can stay open and stores can sell alcohol. Instead, Councilman Jim Graham wants to put the screws to the Districts small businesses by hiking the citys liquor tax. The results of such a hike would be disastrous for employers, consumers, and jobseekers alike.
Americans for Tax Reform has pointed out the folly of hiking liquor taxes numerous times in the past. In neighboring Maryland, Democrat lawmakers hiked the states liquor tax by 50-percent just over a year ago. Despite the rhetoric from proponents of that tax hike, the Maryland Tourism Council pointed out that in July of 2011, the actual revenue generated by Marylands alcohol tax increase fell short of projections.
Dont just take ATRs word for it. In todays Washington Times, Michelle Minton of the Competitive Enterprise Institute highlighted the problems that a liquor tax increase would pose for low income workers just trying to make ends meet:
The tax actually will be assessed on wholesalers in one large sum. The prices that wholesalers charge bars, stores and restaurants subsequently will jump. This initial increase in expenses will hurt the smallest bars and restaurants, which will try to recoup the losses by increasing the costs of their food and drinks.
This means two things: First, people who arent even drinking alcohol likely will end up paying for the increase. Second, wait staff and bartenders likely will see their tips shrink. Most customers calculate tips by rounding up - the keep the change method. If the cost of a drink increases by 6 cents, customers arent likely to alter their tipping math. Thus, the tax is coming almost directly out of the tips on which many service workers depend.
Councilman Graham cites a need to reduce alcohol consumption as a reason for his tax hike. Graham doesnt seem to understand that there is a contradiction in his move to make the Districts budget more reliant on alcohol tax revenue, while also claiming he intends to cut down on alcohol consumption. The same contradictory claims were made when Washington, DC hiked its cigarette tax in 2009. In that instance, revenue not only fell short of projections, tobacco tax revenues came in below pre-hike levels. This was in large part the result of consumers deciding to purchase cigarettes outside the city most likely in Virginia, where this onerous lifestyle tax is considerably lower.
ATR is encouraging DC residents to contact Councilman Graham and let him know that a tax hike on liquor is the wrong medicine for what ails the Districts budget: overspending. District taxpayers can contact Councilman Graham at (202) 724-8181 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Additionally, Graham can be tweeted at @JimGrahamWard1
Also, regarding the proposal to permit the sale of liquor on Sunday, the Washington City Paper has listed some reasons as to why the nonsensical prohibition on Sunday sales needs to end.
Read more: http://atr.org/dc-city-council-pushes-higher-taxes-a6870#ixzz1tuk61X2q
Looks like Amazon will be doing more business there. ;-)
When my wife worked for Alaska Airlines we’d take an empty suitcase on trips to Chicago and places in California to fill liquor orders. Two examples: Quervo gold Tequilla in the family sized bottle in Washington: $46. In Chicago: $26. In CA: $20.
I would rather encourage these idiots to raise taxes as high as they can jack them up. Then help them invent new ones! That way the District of Criminals can live more up to its name!
If ever there should be a shining city on a hill, due to government largess, it should be DC.
Instead, it has become a stinking bog of waste, stupidity, lousy city services, rotten schools and litter like you read about. Not to mention scoundrels like Jim Graham who thinks he knows best for everyone.
Now that’s living.
Funny you mention that; there’s been an argument for years that full-time DC residents should, since they don’t have voting members of Congress, pay no Federal Income Tax.
I suspect that many Democrats support raising liquor taxes because they get their booze (usually cheap white/red wine, or beer) at parties/receptions, either catered by companies that buy out of the District, or are “donated” by friendly firms.
—Now thats living.—
The interesting thing is that we don’t drink much ourselves, but the eye-poke to the state motivated us and made it fun. And a lot of friends got cheap booze. Just doing our part. ;-)
The one that really blew people away was the family sized bottle of Kirkland Vodka for $25. It’s Greygoose. I think it goes for over $75 in Seattle, but I’m not sure.
Considering how small DC is, this is really stupid. It doesn’t take that long to travel to either Virginia or Maryland.
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