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Sep 25: Tax alcohol for drug treatment? Yes or no?
September 25th, 2010 by Sam

Jim McManus of the Committee Against Repeal of the Alcohol Tax will join us to talk about Massachusetts Ballot Question # 1…  which would repeal the tax on alcohol which funds addiction treatment programs…

Should the alcohol industry be required to pay for the negative consequences of it being legal?  Should we do something for the businesses near the New Hampshire border?  What about other drugs, like marijuana?  Legal with taxes to provide addiction treatment?  What about gambling?

Their point of view is…

Alcohol is not a necessity and does not deserve a special tax exemption. The only goods in Massachusetts exempt from the sales tax are necessities like food, clothing, and prescriptions. If anything should be taxed, products like cigarettes and alcohol should be.

Revenues from the alcohol tax provide dedicated funding for healthcare services for more than 100,000 residents with behavioral health problems. Massachusetts has some of the highest rates of alcohol and drug abuse in the country – the last thing we need is to take money away from prevention and treatment services to make alcohol more accessible. The alcohol tax literally saves lives by reducing teen drinking and funding treatment services to help people beat addictions and getting their lives back on track.

Nearly every other state has a sales tax on alcohol. With Massachusetts facing a serious budget deficit, don’t give alcohol a special exemption.


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