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Proposed alcohol sales tax on April ballot in Anchorage

Come January 2020, that Saturday night pint of beer could cost you a little extra. That’s if the city’s proposed alcohol sales tax gets enough votes on April 20th.

Ona Brause, Chief of Staff for Mayor Berkowitz, outlined all of these details to the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce during ‘Make it Monday’ this week. She made it clear, the tax dollars would go towards addressing issues of homelessness, alcohol and other substance abuse.

“This is one of the issues that the community has been talking about the most over the last few years where we have been in office,” said Brause, “This is the best solution to address the issue.”

Brause says one of the questions that often arises, is how this alcohol tax is different from the state’s alcohol tax? The difference is that the state’s tax is wholesale, affecting retailers, while the Municipality’s proposed sales tax affects the consumer directly.

According to data presented by Brause at the Chamber meeting, the state’s alcohol tax currently brings in about $40 million dollars a year. Half of that goes into the general fund, and the other half goes into a special fund dedicated to alcohol misuse prevention. That’s about $20 million dollars for the entire state to split on alcohol misuse prevention. Read more here.

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