A day after the Connecticut General Assembly's Finance Revenue and Bonding Committee approved plans to increase the Constitution State's alcohol taxes by 20 percent, restaurants and the liquor industry said Friday they're worried more of the state's business will be driven north, or to other nearby, more tax-friendly states.
"You are now higher than all of the surrounding states, especially with Massachusetts," said Sarah Longwell, managing director of the American Beverage Institute, which represents more than 65 restaurants in Connecticut. "That puts you guys right out in front in terms of taxation."
The nearly $1.5 billion in tax increases approved Thursday was sent to the Senate for further consideration. The co-chairwomen of the Finance Revenue and Bonding Committee, however, acknowledge some changes still may be made in the coming days before a floor vote is held.
It's time to reach out to your elected officials and tell them how you feel about this...
This law cost me my job. Literally.
Let me tell you a little story.
High volume liquor retailers in Connecticut have a habit of selling various packaging of the "big name brands" (ie Budweiser, Miller, Coors, etc.) at cost as a draw to get customers in. I worked in such an establishment. For the last 8 months, were known particularly for sell loose cases of Budweiser at state minimum. We never made a dime on it. My duty was to upsell the better beer selections to the customer base that was willing to spend their money on quality. I did this to the best of my ability, building one of the best beer selections in the state and being a go-to person for reviews for a large amount of my customers.
Flash forward to the end of June 2011. The new floor tax was about to go into effect, as well as the back dated tax on beer going back to all inventory in store as of January 2011.....
...that's right. All that Budweiser sold, we had now LOST money on. My department's numbers went from looking good to looking dismal, and due to it, cuts needed to be made. Even though I did not set those prices, I was the low man on the totem pole, and the most expendable.
SO I don't know about anyone else, but from my standpoint, how does this tax stimulate the economy when it costs the businesses customer dollars, and it puts more people collecting unemployment?
I'm sorry to hear about your situation... I'm really not a big fan of taxes in general, and now this is just another example of the negative effects increases taxes can have on small businesses and their employees. It's a domino effect, moving forward, who's pitching the better beer there now? Will sales on craft beer decrease at the your former job, and in turn harm local craft brewers?
I hope you find work soon, I know of at least one package store that was looking for a good beer guy. I'll poke around and see if they still are. Best of luck to you...