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Breweries may soon see boost in revenue thanks to tax reform

Rep. Bill Owens, Sen. Charles Schumer and Lake Placid Pub & Brewery owner Chris Ericson talk about the new Small Breweries Act on the deck of Lake Placid Pub & Brewery Sept. 6.

Rep. Bill Owens, Sen. Charles Schumer and Lake Placid Pub & Brewery owner Chris Ericson talk about the new Small Breweries Act on the deck of Lake Placid Pub & Brewery Sept. 6. Photo by Keith Lobdell.

— Small breweries throughout the nation may get the extra boost that they need thanks to new legislation sponsored by a pair of New York politicians.

Sen. Charles Schumer and Rep. Bill Owens were in Lake Placid Friday, Sept. 6, touring the Lake Placid Pub and Brewery and talking about the Small Breweries Act.

“Our craft brewing industry is one of the fastest growing industries in Upstate New York,” Schumer said. “They are often accompanied by restaurants that increase tourism and increase revenue. I want to help them and I have been working on this bill for a while.”

The Small Breweries Act would cut the excise tax in half for the first 60,000 barrels of beer produced by small breweries from $7 a barrel to $3.50.

“This is going to be a real shot in the arm for our small breweries in Upstate New York,” Schumer said. “Cutting the excise tax in half could mean about $200,000 in savings on those first 60,000 barrels at its current production, it could mean about $21,000 in the pocket of the Lake Placid Brewery, which will be put back into the brewery allowing them to create jobs and expand the brewery.”

“The fact the they are growing and creating more jobs is everything that Chuck and I like to see in our communities,” Owens said. “It impacts our entire economy in the North Country.”

“Not only does this provide for an industry but it provides for more excitement in coming to the area,” Jim McKenna of the Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism said.

“This will allow us to continue to reflect the success of the industry,” Lake Placid Brewery owner Chris Ericson said. “I think that this is a really tangible thing for a company like ours.”

The Lake Placid Brewery currently makes around 1,500 barrels of beer at their Lake Placid site and 6,000 barrels at their distribution company in Utica.

“Twenty years ago, I got an at home brewing kit as a graduation present,” Ericson said. “Now I am standing on a deck looking over Mirror Lake with a congressman and a senator talking about the success of my brewing company.”

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