Granholm Offers Tax Reform Plan

January 27, 2005
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LANSING – Gov. Jennifer Granholm today unveiled a tax-reform proposal that would significantly revamp the formula used to assess the state’s Single Business Tax.

The governor said the proposal would provide tax relief for 77 percent of the businesses in Michigan and more equitably spread the tax burden across economic sectors.

“The changes we’re introducing today make Michigan’s business tax structure simpler, fairer, and more attractive for the job providers we want to stay and grow in Michigan,” Granholm said.

“This proposal slashes state business taxes for our entrepreneurs and storeowners, providing a savings that they can invest in their businesses to grow more jobs here.”

The changes would weigh the SBT more to sales and profits and less on payroll and property and reduce the SBT rate from 1.9 percent to 1.2 percent — and from 2.0 percent to 1.2 percent for small businesses. The package also would create a new 35 percent personal property tax credits for manufacturers and for research and development.

Insurance companies would face a new 2 percent premium tax, which is expected to get stiff resistance from the industry.

Granholm says the premium tax would bring insurers in Michigan in line with the national average. The proposal exempts health coverage from HMOs, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and self-insurance plans.

The proposal also would eliminate what Granholm calls several “special tax preferences” within the SBT.

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