Charleston, W.Va. (AP) -- The cost of a beer in West Virginia would go up by at least 3 cents under a plan aimed at funding substance abuse programs.
The bill, discussed Wednesday in the Health and Human Resources committee, would raise the tax on beer from $5.50 per barrel to $19.25.
That translates to an increase on 12-ounce bottles and cans from 2 to 5 cents.
The measure would raise about $20 million.
The money would be spent by a panel under the jurisdiction of the court system in the form of grants.
Delegate Don Perdue, D-Wayne, says it's needed to address alcohol and drug abuse, but some lawmakers are wary of raising taxes.
A public hearing on the bill is scheduled for Monday.
(Copyright 2010 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)