Sophisticated Hound

Manager Shane Goodman pours some of the Sophisticated Hound’s own local brew recently. The proposed abolition of the state income tax could prove problematic for local breweries in the state.

PRINCETON — If the proposed abolition of the state income tax is passed by the State Legislature, there will be effects on a number of state industries, including breweries.

Matt Barnett, owner of The Sophisticated Hound on Mercer Street, said Tuesday, “Right now, we pay a tax on the product which we sell to distributors. The current rate is $5.60 per 31 gallons. If the current bill passes, the tax will increase by 431 percent to $29.25 per 31 gallons.”

He added that, at current rates, selling 500 barrels at 31 gallons each costs the business $15,000-$18,000 in taxes. Under the bill, the same amount would cost $87,000-$96,000.

“Our customers will have to pay the additional cost. This affects small brewers in-state, not out-of-state brewers. We’re $1 or $2 above large companies per a four-pack currently. If it passes, we’ll have to sell a four-pack for $15, as compared to $6-$8 a six-pack.,” Barnett said.

He urged people to contact their local representatives to oppose the bill.

“If this passes, it will force businesses out of the state for costs. I’ve been in West Virginia my whole life and I don’t want to leave.” He said.

For more information, go to The Sophisticated Hound Facebook page.

Jeff Harvey is a freelance reporter and columnist for the Princeton Times. Contact him at delimartman@yahoo.com

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