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Liquor, beer, wine sales tax to end Jan. 1

Associated Press / December 27, 2010

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Shoppers in Massachusetts will soon no longer have to pay the state’s 6.25 percent sales tax on alcohol sold in stores. Voters approved a ballot question in November eliminating the levy, and it is set to disappear Jan. 1. Alcohol was exempt until 2009, when lawmakers expanded the sales tax to include beer and wine sold in stores and to use the extra revenue to help pay for substance-abuse programs. The package store industry and beer distributors launched an advertising campaign in support of a ballot question to repeal the tax, ultimately outspending supporters of the tax by a 10-to-1 ratio. Store owners argued that the tax hurt sales, especially for stores on the border with New Hampshire, which has no sales tax.