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DC City Council Pushes for Higher Taxes on Consumers
ATR ^ | 2012-05-03 | Patrick Gleason

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 District’s small businesses by hiking the city’s 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 state’s 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 Maryland’s alcohol tax increase fell short of projections.

Don’t just take ATR’s word for it. In today’s 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 aren’t 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 aren’t 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 doesn’t seem to understand that there is a contradiction in his move to make the District’s 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 District’s budget: overspending. District taxpayers can contact Councilman Graham at (202) 724-8181 or by email at 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:

TOPICS: Business/Economy; Food; Government; Local News
KEYWORDS: dc; democrats; taxes; washington
Economic illiteracy on display again in the Washington, DC City Council

Take this article and others I found to the fight to the Libs on their own turf; put the Left on the defensive at Digg and at Reddit and in Stumbleupon and Delicious

1 posted on 05/04/2012 8:18:09 AM PDT by 92nina
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To: 92nina

Looks like Amazon will be doing more business there. ;-)

2 posted on 05/04/2012 8:19:53 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: 92nina

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.

3 posted on 05/04/2012 8:22:38 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: 92nina

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!

4 posted on 05/04/2012 8:23:55 AM PDT by Jack Hydrazine (It's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine!)
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To: 92nina

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.

5 posted on 05/04/2012 8:37:36 AM PDT by RexBeach (Mr. Obama Can't Count.)
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To: cuban leaf

Now that’s living.

6 posted on 05/04/2012 8:51:04 AM PDT by 92nina
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To: Jack Hydrazine

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.

7 posted on 05/04/2012 8:56:33 AM PDT by 92nina
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To: 92nina

—Now that’s 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.

8 posted on 05/04/2012 8:56:49 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: 92nina

Considering how small DC is, this is really stupid. It doesn’t take that long to travel to either Virginia or Maryland.

9 posted on 05/04/2012 7:53:40 PM PDT by Paleo Conservative
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