New ITEP Analysis: Michigan Business Tax Cuts Would Be Paid for with Sharply Regressive Tax Hikes



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Last week we told you about Michigan Governor Rick Snyder’s plan to cut Michigan business taxes by nearly $2 billion annually, and to pay for it on the backs of seniors and low-income families.  In an update to that story, ITEP crunched the numbers on the tax fairness impact of Snyder's proposed income tax hikes earlier this week, and unfortunately, the results weren’t very surprising.

The ITEP analysis was first published by the Michigan League for Human Services (MILHS), and was later picked up by the Associated Press, among others.  That analysis shows that the personal income tax increases contained in Snyder’s plan would require low-income families to pay 1.1 percent more of their income in tax, while requiring the state’s wealthiest taxpayers to pay less than one-tenth that amount, relative to their income.  The most notable components of Snyder’s plan include eliminating the state Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and fully taxing pensions and other retirement income.

Snyder’s plan is particularly objectionable because none of the additional revenue raised via the personal income tax would be used to save vital state services from the budget axe.  Rather, all of the money would be channeled into massive tax cuts for Michigan businesses.  It seems odd, to say the least, that Snyder would prioritize large business tax cuts so highly despite Michigan’s sizeable budget gap.  But even if Snyder refuses to give up on his quest to slash business taxes, the ITEP analysis at least makes clear that he needs to find a better way of paying for those cuts.

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