Press Releases


For Immediate Release                             Contact: Tionee Scotland
June 16, 2022                                                    340-201-6453

Press Release


Washington, DC – Congresswoman Plaskett, a Member of the House Ways and Means, Budget and Agriculture Committees, released the following statement regarding the 2nd Annual Congressional Rum Caucus’s Rum Tasting Event:

“Earlier this week, I and my sister and colleague Rep. Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon, hosted the the 2nd Annual Congressional Rum Caucus’s Rum tasting event. It has been two years since our first Rum Caucus event, and I am thrilled to celebrate the importance of the rum industry especially to my home, the Virgin Islands of the United States.

“The rum industry is an integral part of the economy of the Virgin Islands. As a fiscal revenue source, the U.S. Virgin Islands received $273 million from FY2021 rum taxes, and rum distilleries are a significant source of well-paying jobs on the islands. Both the Cruzan Rum and Captain Morgan facilities are also known for their distillery tours, which help bolster the Virgin Islands of the United States tourism industry.

“To continue to support this vital part of our territories’ economies, Congresswoman González-Colón and I have introduced ‘Rum Cover Over’ permanency legislation. Since 1984, federal law has limited the amount of tax revenue from rum produced in the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico and sold in the mainland U.S. that can be rebated back to our islands to further economic development and growth. Temporary provisions which increased this limit unfortunately are just that: temporary.  We aim to extend the higher carry over rate for as long as possible or, better yet, permanently repeal the arbitrary and unfair limit on the rum carry over once and for all.

“I would like to thank the sponsor of our event, the Distilled Spirits Council of America and extend a special thank you to Kelly Poulsen, the Vice President of Federal Government Relations and Jessica Brady, the Senior Director of Federal Government Relations, for their tremendous efforts organizing this event and supporting the work of the Congressional Rum Caucus.

“I must also thank all the Members of the Congressional Rum Caucus, especially my co-Chair Congresswoman González-Colón. To Caucus members Congresswomen Cammack and Salazar and Congressmen DeFazio, Soto, Suozzi, Gimenez, Steube, Dunn, Newhouse, and Steil—thank you for your efforts in support of the Caucus and of American rum distillers. We look forward to many more Members joining. I believe we also added Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schulz and Congresswoman Nicole Malliotakis this week.

“To all other Members of Congress and staff who were in attendance, thank you for joining us. Finally, I also wish to extend a heartfelt thank you to Congressman Neal, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, for his continued support of the Rum Cover Over legislation.”