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Long Branch Distillery Goes to Capitol Hill to Urge Support for Spirits Tax Cut Bill

Meets with NJ Representatives to discuss issues impacting small craft distillers

Long Branch, NJ, USA – WEBWIRE

Washington, DC - Mark Elia of Long Branch Distillery was one of more than 150 craft distillers from around the country who gathered in Washington, D.C. from July 22 through July 24 for the distilled spirits industry’s 10th Annual Public Policy Conference, co-hosted by the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States and the American Craft Spirits Assocaition (ACSA).

The conference featured a series of legislative and regulatory sessions on key federal and state issues impacting the distilling industry.  As part of the conference, Mark Elia participated in congressional visits with New Jersey state legistators to urge support for the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act (H.R. 1175/S. 362). This critical legislation makes permanent a federal excise tax cut on distilled spirits, and was enacted in 2017.  Without Congessional approval, the tax cut for distillers will expire on December 31, 2019.

Mark Elia also discussed the harm that retaliatory tariffs on spirits exports are having on American distillers, large and small, and the importance of his distillery to the economic development of the surrounding community.

“Meeting with our New Jersey Representatives was a highlight of the conference,” said Mark Elia. “I expressed to them the importance of making the tax cut on distilled spirits permanent.  The reduced tax rate will have a major impact on my distillery, enabling me to hire more staff, invest in additional equipment and buy more local grain.  It was impactful to share with the Representatives how this bill will continue to help my small distillery grow, as weill as the devastating impact on my business if it does not pass.”

Conference speakers included: Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), co-sponsor of the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act (S.362); Senator Rob Portman (R-OH); Senator Jon Tester (D-MT); Alcohol Tax and Trade Bureau officals; and Carl Hulse, New York Times chief Washington correspondent.

“This is a historic moment for our industry as more than 150 distillers from 33 states descend on Washington to rally further support for this critical, urgent legislation,” said Margie A.S. Lehrman, CEO, American Craft Spirits Association. “Without permanent and immediate Federal Excise Tax reform, the stability of this vibrant industry, and the industries that surround us - agriculture, tourism and the broader hospitality industry - are bound to be paralyzed.”


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