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Beer excise tax renewed to help craft breweries, distilleries

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Posted at 9:33 AM, Dec 20, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-20 11:37:49-05

COLORADO SPRINGS — An excise tax that helps craft breweries and distilleries has been renewed.

The Senate passed a $1.4 trillion budget sent to the president Thursday that will avoid a government shutdown. Part of that massive budget included the tax break.

Last week, we spoke with one local brewer who was worried about a giant jump in production costs impeding his plans to expand his business.

Red Leg Brewing Company's President and Founder Todd Baldwin said the tax break helped pay for production growth, improvements in quality assurance and manpower.

"The last two years, we've invested more in now only our people here, but we were able to start health insurance and a 401(k) this year for our employees, which is super cool. And we were able to bring on more employees," Baldwin said.

As a whole, craft brewers have also capitalized on an excise tax break included in President Trump's 2017 tax cuts, reducing what they pay the government for every barrel produced. That relief allowed brewers to use the money elsewhere.

Without that tax extension in Red Leg's case, their federal tax burden would have gone from $40,000 to about $75,000 a year.

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