Just in time for the start of the summer cookout season, our friends at the Tax Foundation have updated their map of beer excise taxes:
Perhaps unsurprisingly, New Mexico has the highest (tied with Utah) beer excise taxes in the West (not including Alaska and Hawaii). This map doesn’t tell the full story as small brewers have been exempted from the State’s onerous taxes on beer, but New Mexico also (uniquely) charges gross receipts taxes on beer production.
That’s not to say that New Mexico hasn’t had success in cutting taxes on some brewers as I pointed out in a 2014 article.
New Mexico isn’t in the Baptist South of the old Confederacy where excise taxes are highest. We’re not dominated by the LDS religion which frowns upon alcohol as is Utah. So, why is New Mexico’s tax on beer so high? Perhaps it is our State’s near-religious adherence to big government.