A move in the Legislature to increase Wisconsin's beer tax, something that hasn't been done for decades. State Representative Terese Berceau is drafting a bill to increase the tax from two dollars a barrel to ten bucks, with revenues to alcohol treatment programs and drunk driving enforcement. Wisconsin's beer tax hasn't been raised since 1969, and Berceau knows it won't be easy, noting little support among legislative colleagues. They "look at me like I'm nuts," says Berceau. "They don't want to touch it. But from outside the building I'm getting a lot more support. The Madison Democrat says the increased beer tax really wouldn't amount to that much: about 18 cents on a six pack.
But Berceau's proposal is "Dead on Arrival" at the Capitol, according to Representative Terry Musser . "It does affect the blue collar workers, who most of us espouse to defend," says Musser. "This is a direct attack on their checkbook." The Black River Falls Republican says the higher beer tax would "fly in the face" of Wisconsin's culture, where taverns are a social gathering place. [From John Colbert, WIBA]