CHICAGO – The Distilled Spirits Council today denounced Chicago Mayor Richard Daley’s proposed 20 percent increase in liquor taxes, calling it “another blow to Chicago’s hospitality industry, exacerbating cross-border sales and pushing more convention and tourism business out of the city.” “Spirits products are already taxed higher in Chicago than in any other metropolitan city, including New York,” said Dale Szyndrowski, Distilled Spirits Council Vice President, noting that an economic analysis by the Council shows Chicago’s excessive tax rate has already cost 1,200 hospitality jobs. “Slapping an even higher tax on local businesses and consumers is not the way to keep jobs or attract more conventions and tourists to the city.” Szyndrowski pointed out that Chicago restaurants, bars, nightclubs, hotels and consumers already face seven different taxes – federal excise tax, state excise tax, county excise tax, city excise tax, state sales tax, county sales tax and city sales tax – each time they buy a single spirits product. At the current tax rate of $8.00 per gallon, Chicago’s liquor taxes are already higher than in any other metropolitan area and almost twice the rate of surrounding areas. Other municipalities in Illinois tax alcohol at $4.50 per gallon. Wisconsin’s alcohol tax is $3.25 per gallon, and Indiana’s is $2.68 per gallon.