New York state is trying to get out of the way of the burgeoning number of craft breweries in the state. Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a law Wednesday that uses a mixture of tax credits and incentives to boost the beer business.
The problems for small breweries started in March, when a court ruling forced them to pay new excise taxes amounting to thousands of dollars, depending on the size of the brewery.
"This additional tax cost would have been devastating for breweries in this state. So this legislation makes sure there's an extension of a tax credit brewers desperately need," said Cuomo.
Cuomo signed the legislation in front of cases of Saranac and Utica Club Beer at the Matt Brewery in Utica. He also noted that the law offers incentives for brewers to partner with New York agriculture, and makes it easier for brewers to draw tourists to their breweries.
All this is ultimately good for the state, says Matt Brewing Company CEO Rick Matt, because the number of breweries keeps growing.
"In the last 10-15 years it probably created two to three thousand jobs, and it's on the verge of going more than that and that is what is in it for everyone else. More jobs in New York state, more people employed," said Matt.
The governor's office estimates that the brewing business brings two million dollars into the state economy every year.