House Bill 3296 is an unprecedented tax increase that would devastate Oregon beer, wine, cider and spirits
PORTLAND, Ore. — House Bill 3296 would increase taxes on beer and cider by nearly 3000% and increase taxes on wine by nearly 2000%, making Oregon the highest beer, wine and spirits tax state in the nation.
“This appears to be the single largest beer, wine and cider tax increases ever proposed. If the goal is to kill the Oregon beer, wine and cider sectors, this bill is a great start. Beer, wine, cider and spirits are an essential part of Oregon’s economy and identity. House Bill 3296 would eliminate these local jobs with a nearly 3,000% tax increase on beer and cider and almost 2,000% tax increase on wine at a time when these businesses are battling a pandemic recession. This is tremendously insulting and would be an unprecedented blow to a sector that has put Oregon on the map,” said the Oregon Beverage Alliance.
Overall, 74% of Oregonians oppose increasing taxes on beer, wine, cider and spirits. Closures due to COVID-19, coupled with unprecedented wildfires, have had a devastating impact on Oregon’s breweries, wineries, cideries, restaurants, bars and hospitality sector.
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Oregon was home to 400 breweries, 900 wineries, 1,200 vineyards, 100 cideries, 65 distilleries and 73 distributors creating more than $12.5 billion in economic activity, tens of thousands of good-paying jobs and more than $3 billion in wages.
Many of those jobs are now at risk or have been lost because of the pandemic. It is estimated that 20,000 Oregon jobs related to beer and wine were lost in 2020. The hospitality sector has lost more than 50,000 Oregon jobs. Tax increases only make it harder for these businesses to invest in rehiring, equipment, upgrades and expansion.
House Bill 3296 would increase the beer and cider tax from $2.60 a barrel to $72.60 per barrel. And wine taxes would increase from 64 cents to $10.65 per gallon.
Oregon already has some of the highest alcohol prices in the country. And Oregon’s beer, wine, cider and spirits sectors are the third largest source of revenue for the state — behind income taxes and the state lottery.
About the Oregon Beverage Alliance
The Oregon Beverage Alliance is made up of local brewers, winemakers, cidermakers, distillers and their supply and hospitality partners creating hundreds of thousands of jobs. Learn more: www.DontTaxMyDrink.org