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Maybe this explains why the beer tax has held so steady

Apr 21, 2013 - Pat Arrine, Lander


On reading the news about trying to get the Wyoming Legislature to raise the tax on beer above the level it has been at since the 1930s, a memory came back to me from a long time back.

Years and years ago (I don't care to remember exactly how many), I went on a school trip to the Wyoming Capitol while the Legislature was in session. It was fun, and we got to shake hands with several legislators and so forth. I do recall that Ed Breece of Lander was serving at the time, because he was one of the men who met us. I didn't live in Lander then, I was from Casper.

After that we went to the Hitching Post Inn for lunch with some of the legislators. After lunch, some of us had to go to the bathroom. The ladies room at the restaurant was pretty busy, so the wife of one of the representatives said we could just come to their room at the inn and use the facilities. I do not remember who the nice lady was, but we were appreciative.

When we got to the room, the rest of us waited our turn for the bathroom. We noticed a very large box in the representative's hotel room. The lid was of, and it must have had 20 or 30 bottles of beer, wine and hard liquor. We were in junior high, I believe, so we knew what we were seeing.

The nice wife of the legislator saw us looking at the liquor box, and she stepped over and put the lid back on. "Just a little housewarming gift for the legislators!" she said cheerily.

I do not know if the lawmakers still get that same "little housewarming gift," but if they do it probably explains why the beer tax hasn't been raised in 75 years.

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