Murkowski Co-Sponsors Bill Empowering Alaska’s Craft Brewers

Senator: Small Breweries are “Economic Engines” and Face Daunting Odds

Senator Lisa Murkowski today announced she is co-sponsoring S.375, the Small Brewer Reinvestment and Expanding Workforce Act (The Small BREW Act), to promote local job growth, clear the way for these small businesses to expand, and level the playing field for Alaska’s small breweries by restructuring the tax rates paid by small brewers.  As Co-Chair of the Senate Brewers’ Caucus, Senator Murkowski originally co-sponsored the bill when it was introduced back in 2013 and continues to advocate for Alaska’s small breweries.

“Alaska’s small breweries have the opportunity to thrive, and we need to cut red tape where we can,” said Murkowski. “These economic engines are not just businesses, they’re employers, job creators, manufacturers, and proud standard bearers of the communities where they operate.  When we empower Alaska’s small business success stories, we empower Alaska’s communities – from Baranof Island Brewing Company up to Silver Gulch and all the hard work done between.”

The Small BREW Act would reduce the federal excise tax on America’s small breweries from $7 per barrel to $3.50 per barrel for the first 60,000 barrels, and from $16 to $14 up to 2 million barrels. Furthermore, the bill changes the definition of “small brewer” to breweries with annual production of 6 million or fewer barrels.

“The Brewers Guild of Alaska is happy to see that Senator Murkowski is supporting the Small BREW Act,” said Rick Armstrong, President of the Brewers Guild of Alaska. “This act will help provide much needed relief for Alaska’s small breweries, allowing us to reinvest in our communities, create local manufacturing jobs, and continue promoting Alaska.”

Harvard University professor Dr. John Friedman conducted a study on the bill, estimating that in its first year, it would create over 5,000 jobs and generate $183.1 million in economic activity.

Background: Click here for Senator Murkowski’s recent op-ed about “Fighting for Alaska’s Breweries.”