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Bill Would Gradually Lower Liquor Taxes

Republican and Democrat lawmakers are introducing a measure on Wednesday that would gradually lower liquor taxes.

Backers say lowering taxes would spur more purchases in Washington state and the revenue to the state would eventually be at the same levels prior to privatization.

Since the Costco-backed initiative privatizing the state's liquor system, prices have been too high for some consumers. Last month Idaho regulators reported that Washingtonians crossing the border seeking cheaper booze boosted the Gem State's coffers by $10 million.

However, according to fiscal impact estimates prepared by state agencies, cutting taxes for booze would cost the state $20 million in the first two years of implementation and more than $46 million two years later. Local governments would also lose millions.

The bill is being introduced with only two weeks left in the legislative session.