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Ohio officials want response after Miller tax breaks.

Ohio officials want response after Miller tax breaks

Miller Brewing Co. said it can't set a date to make beer at its idle Trenton, OH brewery in response to Butler County officials' demand to start brewing or give up tax breaks given when the plant was built.

County and state lawmakers told a news conference last week they are asking the Millwaukee-based brewing company to give them a specific date for starting production at the $411 million brewery, which has been dormant since 1983.

State Rep. Michael Fox (R-Hamilton) estimated Miller has saved $11 million in taxes during the past decade under the tax breaks granted to the company.

In Milwaukee, Miller spokesman Peter Acly said the company can't say when the brewery will begin production because demand in the national beer market remains flat and the Trenton plant's production is not needed.

"We've obviously wanted to open the plant," Acly said. "It depends on market conditions, but we can't say when full production would be started."

He said Miller has paid $6.5 million in local property taxes since building the facility. The spokesman added that the tax revenue would not exist if Miller hadn't chosen Trenton, a town 25 miles north of Cincinnati, over other communities which competed for the plant in the late 1970s.

The county granted Miller 15 years of tax abatements, expecting 1,400 jobs and more than $150 million in annual economic activity. The county and state spent millions on road construction and facilities to induce Miller to build the Trenton brewery.

Miller operated the brewery only for a brief test run in the spring of 1984 to determine whether the plant could produce beer. Since then, the company has kept the plant in ready-to-operate condition without setting a firm operational date. It has an annual production capacity of 8 million barrels, Acly said.
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Title Annotation:Miller Brewing Co. Trenton, Ohio plant start-up
Publication:Modern Brewery Age
Date:Nov 13, 1989
Words:310
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