Brewers, business groups hopped up about proposed beer tax

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CHICAGO -- A plan to raise the tax on beer and hard cider in Illinois has some people angry.

Brewers, distributors and retailers are sounding the alarm on a proposed 21% hike. Business owners, especially small micro-breweries, say it’ll cost them precious revenues and jobs.

Local brewers are lamenting the very real possibility that their taxes could soon go up.

Illinois Gov.  J.B. Pritzker is said to be considering tax hikes on beer, wine and liquor to raise $120 million, just a small part of a complicated plan to raise close to $40 billion in state revenue over six years for a capital plan.

But Illinois retailers say the politicians are piling on.

The Illinois Retail Merchants Association says, on an annual basis, the local beer industry generates nearly $14 billion in economic output, implying 45,000 people are paying an estimated $1.6 billion in wages, if you take into account all the different levels of the supply chain.

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