Tax Plan Clears First Hurdle

Frankfort, KY – Over the objections of the alcoholic beverage industry, the House budget committee voted 19-9 for the tax plan. The measure taxes alcohol six-percent at the retail level and raises the cigarette tax by 30-cents. Among opponents was Republican Rep. Jimmy Higdon of Marion County, home of Maker's Mark. "Instead of picking on two industries in Kentucky to raise the funds that we need to get through this crisis, I too would echo was Rep. Graham said, and would call for a one percent increase in the sales tax."

The measure now moves to the House floor, where Democrats admit they will need some Republican votes to win passage of the measure. Lawmakers are trying to fill an almost half-billion dollar hole in the state budget.