Key Vote: $250M tax capture scheme wrong

Jun 14, 2017 by AFP

On behalf of the more than 110,000 activists of Americans for Prosperity-Michigan, I am writing in opposition to Senate Bills 242-244. These bills represent yet another corporate welfare scheme that allows just a handful of politically well-connected corporations to capture $250 million in personal income tax dollars.

This package will be scored in our upcoming 2017 legislative scorecard. As a leading grassroots voice for free-market principles, our scorecard empowers citizens to hold their lawmakers accountable to the principles of economic freedom and limited government

I ask you to specifically consider the following points:

  • These sweetheart corporate tax deals take Michigan back to the failed economic policies of the Granholm era. Governor Granholm proved that even billions in so-called economic development incentives don’t create authentic, lasting economic growth, but instead result in plummeting state revenue and skyrocketing unemployment.
  • This program does not have to pay for itself, meaning that it could draw tax dollars away from core government responsibilities such as roads, schools and public safety services.
  • “But for” provisions are a figment of the political imagination. There are no objective criteria to determine whether or not jobs would have been created “but for” a tax subsidy. The only requirement is words on a piece of paper, spoken by the very same businesses that stand to gain millions in handouts.
  • Not more than 15 businesses would be eligible to receive these special tax breaks, meaning over 799,985 of the businesses operating in Michigan would get nothing.
  • When workers see income taxes withheld from their paycheck week after week, they expect those dollars are going to fund core government services. It is wrong to use the power of the state to transfer the wealth they have earned to well-connected businesses that can afford to hire lobbyists in Lansing.
  • Good tax policy should be aimed at minimizing distortions in the marketplace and broadening the tax base so that all Michigan families and businesses can pay a lower rate. It shouldn’t be a vehicle for government to pick economic winners and losers.

In conclusion, I urge you to oppose Senate Bills 242-244 and instead choose to embrace free-market principles as the best mechanism for growing our economy stronger. Please don’t hesitate to contact me directly to discuss these issues further.


Pete Lund

State Director

Americans for Prosperity-Michigan