The State of the Union and Its Favorite Alcohol Beverage – Beer
The State of the Union and Its Favorite Alcohol Beverage – Beer

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The State of the Union and Its Favorite Alcohol Beverage – Beer

by Jim McGreevy, President & CEO

The State of the Union is an opportunity for the president to discuss his priorities with members of Congress and the American public. This year, our focus will be extending federal excise tax relief for all brewers and beer importers that is set to expire at the end of 2019, ending the tariffs on imported primary aluminum, and providing greater transparency in aluminum pricing.

Extending or making permanent federal excise tax relief for all brewers and beer importers is a top Beer Institute priority for 2019. At the beginning of last year, the federal government began implementing the excise tax relief that Congress included in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. We estimate this change in excise tax rates will result in more than $125 million a year in tax relief for brewers and beer importers, allowing them to invest in their businesses through innovation, technology, and creating more jobs. However, the excise tax relief was only temporary and without congressional action will expire at the end of this year. The Beer Institute is working hard on the reintroduction of the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act, bipartisan and popular legislation that will make this tax relief permanent.

Another important priority for the Beer Institute is addressing both the tariff on imported aluminum and providing greater transparency in aluminum pricing. Although the beer industry understands and appreciates President Trump’s efforts to bring jobs back to the United States, we disagree with his solution – a 10 percent tariffs on primary aluminum, which is increasing costs for brewers to the tune of $347 million, risking 20,000 beer industry jobs. The beer industry is a crown jewel in American manufacturing, supporting 2.2 million good-paying jobs. We need the president to end the tariffs and bring greater transparency to aluminum pricing through regulation of organizations reporting the Midwest Premium. The Beer Institute is working with a bipartisan coalition of members of Congress to reintroduce the Aluminum Pricing Examination (APEX) Act to ensure the federal government has the necessary authority to investigate irregularities in the Midwest Premium.

We hope President Trump addresses these and other issues in his State of the Union. We need him and members of Congress to work together so Americans can continue to enjoy their favorite alcohol beverage – beer.

The Beer Institute

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