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Monday, August 15, 2022


President Bill Clinton has included in his year 2000 budget a proposal to return to
the Virgin Islands the entire $13.50-per-gallon federal tax levied on Virgin
Islands rum.
This is an increase of $3 over the present $10.50 per gallon returned to the V.I. government. The rate had been $11.30 until this year but it dropped to $10.50 last fall when Congress refused to leave it at $11.30 or increase it to the full $13.50 as territorial officials had hoped.
Experts estimate the difference could mean an extra $12 million into the coffers of the financially strained territory.
After attending the official White House announcement, Delegate to Congress Donna
Christian-Christensen said, “I am pleased the president has again proposed this increase to assist the territory’s economic recovery. While we were unable to accomplish this increase by the end of the 105th Congress, I believe the inclusion in this year’s budget will provide the needed push to
obtain congressional approval when it is considered later this year.”
In addition to the rum-tax increase, the president's budget contains $1 million to assist in protecting threatened coral reef ecosystems. Christensen said.
“These funds will allow us to prevent the destruction of our coral reefs which are
so important to maintaining a quality tourism program,” the delegate said.

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