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Alcohol Tax FAQ

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1. Won't alcohol taxes will have the biggest impact on "Joe Six-Pack," the average moderate drinker who just wants to blow off steam at the end of the day?
Contrary to popular belief, studies have shown show that increasing alcohol taxes will have a negligible effect on moderate drinkers. The tax will most dramatically impact heavy drinkers, who account for 15 percent of the population. This is the segment responsible for the vast majority of the costs related to alcohol abuse.

2. Could fair alcohol taxes reduce underage drinking?
We believe it would. Extremely low taxes allow products such as beer and alcopops to be sold remarkably cheap. This low price gives underage drinkers easy access to the products.

In fact, a recent report issued by the Institute of Medicine specifically recommended raising taxes on alcohol as the most comprehensive and effective method of reducing underage drinking.

3. Would alcohol higher taxes mean fewer jobs?
It is unlikely that big alcohol companies would produce less if taxes went up. After the tax increase in 1991, the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor reported that beer-industry wholesale trade employment actually rose by 8,000 jobs.

4. Why would the average American support increasing alcohol taxes?

Actually, a majority of Americans support an increased tax on alcohol, particularly when they learn that alcohol-related harms are estimated at a cost of $184 billion nationwide.

5. Doesn't the alcohol industry already pay taxes on its products to the state and federal government?
The Federal excise taxes collected on alcohol in 2002 totaled a mere $8.3 billion. This is only 4.5 percent of the $184 billion in alcohol-related costs sustained by Americans. In California, Big Alcohol pays a meager .8 percent in taxes to the state of the total cost of alcohol-related harms incurred.

6. Are there any other benefits that may come out of appropriately taxing alcohol?
Increasing alcohol taxes has proven to reduce the rates of sexually-transmitted diseases. For example, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that a beer-tax increase of 20 cents per six-pack would reduce gonorrhea rates by 8.9 percent and syphilis rates by 32.7 percent.


Increases in the state excise tax on beer decreases the probability of overall violence toward children.
Higher beer taxes are also associated with lower rates of traffic fatalities. Specifically, every 1 percent increase in the price of beer results in the decline of traffic fatality rates by 0.9 percent. 



PUBLIC HEALTH NOT PUBLIC DRINKING

COVID-19 alcohol deregulation must not become the new normal!

text REGULATE to 313131 to tell your governor to fight alcohol deregulation under COVID-19

 
• Alcohol makes individuals more vulnerable to CoVID-19.
• Superspreader events happen during indoor gatherings like at bars and clubs.
• Deregulation will be hard to roll back even after the pandemic is over.

Tell your Governor to make public health and safety essential, not industry profits.

CLICK to TAKE ACTION, or text "REGULATE" to 313131

FEATURED PUBLICATIONS

NEW FROM ALCOHOL JUSTICE 
The cover of the Los Angeles County Shelter-In-Place Survey report
THE ALCOHOL SIP (SHELTER-IN-PLACE) SURVEY 
Alcohol use in Los Angeles County under lockdown
(co-published with the Institute for Prevention Strategies)

Recent publications
THE HIGH COST OF THE 4 A.M. BAR BILL

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Babe Wine: Condescending, Concetrated, and #COVIDwashed

AB InBev's newest product uses proven schemes to target youth, but turns it on young women during quarantine.

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LEGISLATIVE ACTIVITY

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All legislation related to alcohol policy in Sacramento. Includes analysis & position letters from AJ & CAPA.


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CA bills concerning opioid and overdose prevention, recovery, and treatment.



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