Michigan GOP’s Latest Tax Cut for Wealthiest Could Force Cuts to Police, Public SchoolsWhile struggling families and small businesses feel the pain from price hikes, major corporations across a wide variety of industries, from Starbucks to meat-processing giant Purdue, aren’t just offsetting rising costs — they’re reaping record profits.
By Main Street Sentinel Staff
The Republican-controlled Michigan Senate voted Thursday for a $2.5 billion tax cut proposal that includes big breaks for the wealthy and will cost Michigan $6 billion dollars, including $3 billion in federal relief funds. Critics warn that the tax plan could ultimately result in funding cuts to public schools and law enforcement to make up the shortfall.
Michigan currently has about $7 billion in federal stimulus funds, but experts say that the Republican budget would put much of that money in jeopardy. To comply with federal rules, Michigan would need to find $2.5 billion in new revenue or cuts in 2023 and $1.8 billion the year after, including to public services like first responders and police.
House Democratic Leader Donna Lasinski, D-Scio, called the plan “the most fiscally irresponsible action we’ve ever seen.” “This wound to our state, our public services, our financial health will pain the people of Michigan for decades,” she added.
“Wealthy Michiganders are already paying far less than their fair share,” Eileen Hayes of Michigan Faith in Action told the Michigan Advance. “If you make $500,000 a year in Michigan today, you’re contributing less to our public services than you would if you lived in 39 other states.”
In a letter to lawmakers, Governor Whitmer made it clear she “will not support legislation that forces cuts to schools, road repairs, and public safety.”
Whitmer’s own budget would pair increases in education funding with a series of targeted tax cuts phased in over three years, starting with a 25% tax reduction for retirees 65 and older. When fully implemented, Whitmer says the plan would save about 500,000 seniors about $1,000 a year each.