Local Alcohol Beverage Company Sues City Of Murray Over Alcohol Sales Tax

Aug 4, 2017

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A local alcohol beverage company is suing the City of Murray over an alcohol sales tax that they claim is “excessive.”

BFC Enterprises LLC does business as Cellar Door Wine and Spirits Package and Thoroughbred Spirits Package. The company is seeking action against the city for the 8% alcohol sales tax which they claim is unreasonably high.


The case was filed in the United States District Court for the Western District of Kentucky. In the case file, BFC claims that the city of Murray is imposing an alcohol sales tax that exceeds the purpose of reimbursing the city for any additional estimated costs that are related to the sale of alcohol. 


"Murray has essentially imposed an income tax, or regulatory licensing fee, to benefit the overall budget." 


BFC also claims that the tax unfairly targets businesses that sell alcohol. Saying "The illegal regulatory license fees bear so heavily against the class of licensed alcohol beverage business as to be unlawfully excessive."


BFC seeks reimbursement for the tax and to have the ordinance pertaining to it abolished.


The tax was set by ordinance in 2001 when citizens voted in favor of allowing liquor by the drink in certain restaurants. The city expanded alcohol sales to include package liquor in 2012.


BFC Enterprises operator Boone Chambers declined to comment. Murray Alcohol Beverage Control administrator Tim Fortner referred questions to City Attorney Warren Hopkins, who was unavailable for comment.