Sexy Data: Alabama Hates Alcohol (Or Just Loves Taxing It)

Click the pic to see how bad it is where you live...

I came across this “Vice Tax” doohicky put together for TurboTax by the folks over at Five Column Media using stats from 2008.  It’s pretty interesting to see which states are pro-alcohol and which states are pro-alcohol-tax.

New Jersey seems pretty reasonable, taxing spirits at $5.50 a gallon and beer at 12 cents a gallon.  Washington and Oregon seems to be very beer-friendly and very happy to tax the hell out of spirits.

Speaking of taxing the devil away, that seems to be what Alabama has in mind, as it taxes spirits a whopping $18.78 a gallon and beer $1.05 a gallon.

Hit the link to see how your state profits from your shortcomings.

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Categories: Beer, Lifestyle, Whiskey

Author:Jim

Craft beer nerd, frequent beer blogger and occasional home brewer.

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23 Comments on “Sexy Data: Alabama Hates Alcohol (Or Just Loves Taxing It)”

  1. Don
    September 6, 2011 at 4:44 pm #

    Although Bama doesn’t like Beer, Washington hits my beloved whiskey the hardest with over a $26 per gallon tax! No wonder it is cheaper to buy washington whiskey in the Idaho liquor store than from the Washington distillery!

    • September 6, 2011 at 4:53 pm #

      Yup, they dig pretty deep!

  2. Don
    September 6, 2011 at 4:49 pm #

    If you want cheap smokes go to South Carolina! Only 7 cents per pack. Nothin like Tobacco Row helping out their home grown industry!

  3. September 6, 2011 at 4:52 pm #

    Although this is a bit misleading, as Utah should truly take the cake when it comes to beer. While the *tax* on beer is only 41 cents a gallon, beer over 3.2% ABW can only be sold in state liquor stores, where it’s given an 86% markup at retail. So, for example, a craft six-pack that retails for $13 (pretty standard, sadly, in Utah) might have around $5 in markup that the state makes a pure profit off of. That works out to an effective tax of over EIGHT DOLLARS a gallon.

    Alabama’s got it bad, but Utah’s got it WAY worse.

    • Don
      September 6, 2011 at 4:55 pm #

      Well Chris, you wouldn’t expect Mormons to come right out and tax Beer, the devil’s drink…no they are far more crafty about it!

    • September 6, 2011 at 4:56 pm #

      Holy crap!

      Literally!!

      It’s a Mormon joke!!!

      Zing!!!!

      (But seriously, that sucks.)

  4. Don
    September 6, 2011 at 4:52 pm #

    Finally, here’s something I bet you didn’t know, Indiana actually generates more revenue then Nevada from taxes on gambling! Them Indiana Quakers know how to know how to get their cut!

    • September 6, 2011 at 4:54 pm #

      I can see at least one person is enjoying the data, Don!

  5. September 6, 2011 at 4:53 pm #

    Looks like Arizona is doing pretty good! I didn’t realize WA was that expensive… I used to live near Seattle…

    • September 6, 2011 at 4:55 pm #

      I never even thought about this stuff until I found this infographic. II had no idea i had it so good in NJ until I compared apples to apples.

  6. Darren
    September 6, 2011 at 5:41 pm #

    I think it’s interesting that Wisconsin and Missouri taxes beer the least. With Colorado and Pennsylvania right behind. Not sure where Pennsylvania comes in but Big Beer lobbyists?

    • Don
      September 6, 2011 at 5:49 pm #

      Darren, I like the way you think. It should also show why big beer is trying to stomp craft breweries in the state legislatures, my guess is that the low taxes benefit craft beer too, and the big boys don’t like that!

      • September 7, 2011 at 11:55 am #

        A lot of local economists (and craft breweries) here in Colorado cite the low tax on beer as just one of the reasons our craft beer community is thriving. I was surprised by how much we tax spirits, I’d thought we’d be lower. At least it isn’t as high as most states. 🙂

        • September 7, 2011 at 12:20 pm #

          Maybe the folks over at Stranahans need to raise a fuss…

  7. Jess
    September 6, 2011 at 5:42 pm #

    I live in Indiana and the state is rather confused on how it feels about alcohol. You can’t buy alcohol at all on Sunday (except at the brewery/winery – made legal last year), election day, or Christmas day. Wine making didn’t become legal until 1974. Oddly, taxes aren’t bad…

    • Don
      September 6, 2011 at 5:50 pm #

      I guess you have to take the good with the bad, also you need to gamble a lot, it is how your state funds everything apparently!

  8. September 6, 2011 at 9:24 pm #

    We here in MD just went thru another tax hike on alcoholic beverages–after much hooing and hahing. Initially the State wanted to put a special tax on soda but the citizenry had a fit! To quote “What right do they have to tax my food!” (as if soda was even remotely a food.) So anyway, they took the coward’s way out and raised the tax on alcohol again.

    BTW: I recently discovered the brews from New Belgium Brewery in Ft. Collins, CO. I tried their Fat Tire Amber Ale and liked it, so next time I was in the store I bought a bomber of their Ranger IPA–pure ambrosia! I ended up buying a case of the Ranger and the manager is holding a bomber of New Belgium’s latest goody for me. Its a limited production dark sour (80% stout, 20% dark sour wood beer) named after the Baltimore-based band Clutch and is supposed to be brewed from local (as in MD) ingredients. I can’t wait.

  9. Brandon
    September 7, 2011 at 11:15 am #

    I’d like to see Stone Brewery open up a facility in Utah. Bam! Have some Arrogant Bastard, Joseph!

    • Don
      September 7, 2011 at 11:47 am #

      Would an Arrogant Bastard drink Polygamy Porter?

  10. ScottG
    September 7, 2011 at 11:56 am #

    The best part about liquor sales in Virginia…the state owns all the liquor stores. So not only do they tax the snot out of it, they set the price in the first place. They’ve looked at privatizing, but given how much money the state makes (and needs) there has been a backlash to that. Normally, I’d be all for free enterprise, but I also like paved roads.
    Not sure why they hate beer or wine. Plenty of both being made in-state.

    • September 7, 2011 at 12:21 pm #

      Ahh, Virginia, where the roads are paved with booze…

  11. September 7, 2011 at 2:03 pm #

    I’m just happy to have the fact that I’m sinning confirmed since they’re taxing me for it.

    • September 7, 2011 at 2:15 pm #

      I guess it feels best in Alabama, where you pay the most!

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