Still no full replacement guarantee for personal property repeal

While reforming the personal property tax (SB 1065-1072) is taking a back seat to budget debates, the Senate Tax Policy Committee continues to take testimony. The committee chair, Sen. Jack Brandenburg (R-Harrison Township), wants the package of bills voted out of Committee next week.

Naturally, business groups like the Michigan and Grand Rapids Chambers of Commerce, GM, Chrysler and Dow Chemical--who are quick to point how much they pay in taxes--spoke in favor of the bills. They claim elimination of the tax will create jobs and would "encourage a notable increase in business activity." They cite a recent Anderson Economic Group report (commissioned by the Michigan Manufacturers Association) that states between 6,000 and 15,000 jobs could be created.

On the other side, Warren Mayor Jim Fouts expressed the concern shared by other city leaders and school districts that there is no guaranteed replacement for the expected $470 million loss of revenue. Right now, local governments that rely on the tax for revenue will probably only get 81 to 97 percent of lost funds replaced.