We need your help in the fight to lower the federal excise tax (FET) for small distillers.
We have had incredible success in the past few months, but there is much more to do. And we need you to join our efforts. Due to ACSA lobbying, there are now FOUR bills that would lower the FET on small producers.
First, in May of this year, ACSA was instrumental in putting forward H.R. 2520, the Distillery Innovation and Excise Tax Reform Act introduced by Rep. Todd Young (R-IN) and John Yarmuth (D-KY).
ACSA’s grassroots lobbying efforts were directly involved in recruiting the bill’s primary sponsor, Rep. Todd Young – a key member of the tax writing Committee. The legislation would reduce the FET on the first 100,000 gallons of production to $2.70 per proof gallon.
In the Senate, S. 1444, introduced by Senator Gary Peters (D-MI) and Dan Sullivan (R-AK) would also reduce the FET on the first 100,000 gallons of production to $2.70 per proof gallon. This is the same bill that ACSA worked on in the last Congress that was sponsored by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY).
New momentum is also behind two new bills that help our industry. S.1562, introduced by Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), would help small distillers with the excise tax reduction and also craft brewers and small wine producers. Notably, Senator Wyden is the most senior Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee, the Committee with primary jurisdiction over tax issues. This bill now has 14 co-sponsors. In the House, Congressman Erik Paulsen (R-MN), a senior Member of the Ways and Means Committee, has introduced H.R. 2903, a companion bill to Senator Wyden. That bill now has more than 70 co-sponsors.
Now is the time to take further action as Congress goes into recess. Here are the ways you can help:
- Call or e-mail your Senators and ask them to co-sponsor S. 1444 and S. 1562.
- Call or e-mail your local Representative and ask him/her to co-sponsor H.R. 2520 and H.R. 2903.
- Encourage your Representative and Senators to visit your distillery – there is nothing like a personal visit to make our case – particularly surrounding the unfairness that our industry receives in the tax code. Use the opportunity to show your passion and how you help the local economy – you hire employees and drive tourism to their districts! Even let them sample a taste or two. Share your story and build a personal relationship.Here are the key points to cover:
• We need their help and support in the small distilling industry.
• While small brewers and small wine producers currently pay a lower FET, small distillers have NO comparable reduction. More money into your distillery means a larger investment in their district.
• Fairness demands that we be treated the same as our small business friends in the beer and wine industry.
• Fixing this oversight in our industry must be the highest priority of any legislation moving through Congress
- Get involved with ACSA through a more active membership or donation to this cause. http://www.americancraftspirits.org/
- Invite ACSA to a State or Local Guild meeting so we can fully detail our FET reduction efforts. (Call 202.669.3661).
Remember, ACSA has hired a seasoned lobbyist in Washington to study the legislation, work with Congressional offices, attend Congressional hearings, and persuade members of Congress that small craft distillers need to be treated fairly. Contact ACSA Board of Directors and legislative committee to join this historic fight and be a leader in advancing our cause to lower the unjust Federal Excise Tax.