While I expect liberal policies from Snyder, I don't expect blind following or at best a compromise-lite plan of his plan. Bad policy is bad politics. Doing something solely for the sake of doing something is bad policy. Government that put itself in a bad position and getting bailed out by taxpayers is bad policy. The legislature's job isn't to follow leaders. The legislature's job is to represent the districts and BE leaders for the district. That means telling Snyder "I'm in charge, not you" when his policy is bad, or "This is good policy, I'll support it." when it's good. Unfortunately, this policy absolutely sucks as bad as Granholm's tenure. Here's my question to the legislators. If Virg Bernero won and came up with this plan, would you vote for it? If Granholm pushed this, would you vote for it? I know that answer, and it would be the right one. Hell, no! That's the answer that should have been given to the supposed "republican," Rick Snyder. "Hell, No" followed by a push for an amendment to actually "reinvent Michigan" as Snyder says, and go after the 80% of the budget that isn't going to be touched with this plan.
From the Free Press
Gov. Rick Snyder, relying entirely on the votes of fellow Republicans, won narrow approval for his sweeping overhaul of Michigan's business and income taxes Thursday, setting the stage for a final, and possibly more difficult, battle in the Senate.
The Snyder proposal -- swapping out the current Michigan Business Tax for a much smaller corporate income tax and eliminating a host of tax exemptions and credits, including Michigan film incentives -- squeaked through the House, 56-53, the bare minimum needed. Six Republicans and every Democrat voted against it.
Backers of the package, which cuts net business taxes more than 80%, or $1.7 billion, said it would make Michigan a better place to do business and create jobs. Opponents decried the loss of income tax exemptions for most pension income and the elimination of most of a tax credit that provides extra income to people who are working but poor. They said it shifted the tax burden from business owners to poor and elderly people.
House Speaker Jase Bolger, R-Marshall, said the House's GOP majority -- the first since 2006 -- was "elected to make change. This is a turnaround moment for the state."
The Snyder tax plan would result in a $350-million tax on currently exempt pension income in 2013 and delay for a year a scheduled income tax rate cut that would cost taxpayers $213 million. In total, income tax revenue would rise nearly $1.5 billion in 2013, nearly as much as business tax collections would decline.
You gotta be kidding me. I expect better from the state house. This is a gimmick tax and spend measure like what Granholm pushed. Approximately 80% of the budget isn't even touched. All these tax increases and shifts are over a 20% portion of the budget since the rest is not considered "discretionary" due to state constitutional or federal concerns. The state should tell the feds to screw off, and amend the state constitution so we can have real line-by-line expenditure reform to adjust to the recessions. Nobody is doing that. It's the same fight we've had every single year with tax increases, tax shifts, creative accounting, declining revenues and until the last two years or so, increased spending.
I'll be calling Joe Hune's office Monday. I suggest all those opposed to this do the same and call their state senator and have them shoot this down. This can give our friends in the house a chance to give themselves a mulligan. If you want reform, go after more than just the so called discretionary budget. No more tax increases. No more gimmicks.
I'd like to add my thanks to Reps. Anthony Forlini, Ken Goike, Pat Somerville, Rick Outman, Pete Lund, and Andrea LaFontaine for doing the right thing and voting no.