Louisiana House Approves Higher Alcohol Tax – Senate To Debate Today
The quest for more money to fund the state has led Governor John Bel Edwards through the valley of sin. Okay, some of us don't consider smoking and drinking to be a sin but according to the legislature they are taxable sins. I guess that's why the legislature has no trouble taxing the sins of the people in order to make up for their fiscal mistakes in previous years.
Here is where we stand on you paying more for a drink and a smoke. The special session of the Louisiana Legislature has already dinged smokers for .22 cents a pack. That increase will hit your wallet on April 1. Yesterday, Sunday, the Louisiana House voted and approved an increase in the state's alcohol tax. That's a tax that had not been raised since 1948 so I guess the timing was right.
If you bring your calculator to the bar you will find that if the Senate approves what the house has already approved your beer could cost a whole penny more. That glass of wine or cocktail could cost as much as .02 cents more. I'm not kidding. That's what was approved by the House.
I guess if you're a smoker you could say you got hosed in this deal. The cigarette tax is expected to generate $46 million in revenue for the state. The alcohol tax is expected to generate a paltry $4 million for the state by the end of the fiscal year.
One legislator, Thomas Carmody, who represents the Shreveport area of our state had proposed that there be a sunset placed on this alcohol tax. In other words he suggested the tax expire in three years. That didn't fly. So depending on how strong the alcohol lobby is in the Senate you could be looking at a slight increase in your adult refreshments come April 1.