Oppose
Tax Climate

Eliminating the Student Assessments Two Years in a Row

Staff Contact

Leah Robinson

Director of Tax Policy and Legislative Affairs

| lrobinson@michamber.com

Summary of Bill & What It Means to You

HB 4310 and HB 4311:  This legislation would eliminate the requirement that k-12 students take the annual assessment designed to gauge how well students are mastering state standards.

Chamber Position

Oppose: The Michigan Chamber opposes these bills.   The students of today are the workforce of tomorrow.  The business community and parents alike need data to understand which students, schools, and districts need the most help to overcome the learning disruptions wrought by COVID-19 – even if the data are not perfect.

Waiving the requirement to administer the MSTEP, the assessment students take to gauge how well they are mastering state education standards, in 2020 was appropriate, but we cannot afford to miss another year of data. Michigan’s students, families, educators, and policymakers need as much information as possible to guide recovery efforts.

Research firm McKinsey and Company reported last December that nationwide, students are on average three months behind in their education.  Students of color are up to five months behind while white students were only one to three months behind.  Without Michigan-specific data, attainable only by MSTEP assessment results, we will not be able to compare across all districts and schools in the state to give parents a clear picture of whether their child is on track, what degree of learning remediation is needed, and where resources are most needed to be directed.

Bill Sponsors

This bill is a Job Killer

Primary Sponsor: Rep. Matt Koleszar, District 20

Additional Supporter
Rep. Brenda Carter, Rep. Lori Stone, Rep. Kevin Hertel, Rep. Kelly Breen, Rep. Sara Cambensy, Rep. Nate Shannon, Rep. Cara Clemente, Rep. Stephanie Young, Rep. Kevin Coleman, Rep. Darrin Camilleri, Rep. Felicia Brabec, Rep. William Sowerby, Rep. Laurie Pohutsky, Rep. Kyra Harris Bolden, Rep. Regina Weiss, Rep. Mari Manoogian, Rep. Yousef Rabhi, Rep. Sarah Anthony, Rep. Abraham Aiyash, Rep. Padma Kuppa, Rep. Joseph Tate, Rep. Shri Thanedar, Rep. Amos O'Neal, Rep. Julie Brixie, Rep. Cynthia Neeley, Rep. Alex Garza, Rep. Helena Scott, Rep. Kara Hope, Rep. Mary Cavanagh, Rep. John Cherry, Rep. David LaGrand, Ranjeev Rep. Puri, Rep. Abdullah Hammoud

Primary Sponsor: Rep. Matt Koleszar, District 20

Additional Supporter
Rep. Lori Stone, Rep. Brenda Carter, Rep. Nate Shannon, Rep. Darrin Camilleri, Rep. Sarah Anthony, Rep. Rachel Hood, Rep. Alex Garza, Rep. Kevin Hertel, Rep. Kara Hope, Rep. Kelly Breen, Rep. Mary Cavanagh, Rep. Julie Brixie, Rep. Regina Weiss, Rep. Cara Clemente, Rep. Felicia Brabec, Rep. Abraham Aiyash, Rep. Laurie Pohutsky, Rep. William Sowerby, Rep. Christine Morse, Rep. Stephanie Young, Rep. Tyrone Carter, Rep. Kevin Coleman, Rep. Sara Cambensy, Rep. Joseph Tate, Rep. Tullio Liberati, Rep. Richard Steenland, Rep. Kyra Harris Bolden, rep. Mari Manoogian, Rep. Yousef Rabhi, Rep. Padma Kuppa, Rep. Amos O'Neal, Rep. Shri Thanedar, Rep. Helena Scott, Rep. Cynthia Neeley, Rep. John Cherry, Rep. David LaGrand, Rep. Ranjeev Rep. Puri, Rep. Abdullah Hammoud, Rep. Tenisha Yancey

Related Issues

Oppose
Unconstitutional Expansion of Gaming

SB 396, SB 397, SB 398 and SB 399 will allow an unconstitutional expansion of casino gaming that disregards the established precedent set around a highly regulated and highly taxed industry. When Government regulates an industry to such a degree, specific and often difficult hurdles stand in the way of changing how these industries operate. Unless total deregulation of highly regulated industries occurs, all businesses must play by the established rules.

Support
Partnership Audit Reform

SB 248  will allow for a streamlined, predictable method for reporting changes in federal tax liability to state tax authorities where one does not currently exist.  This promotes tax compliance and efficiency.

The legislation is a part of a national effort to codify the Multistate Tax Commission’s (MTC) model statute (Model Uniform Statute and Regulation for Reporting Adjustments to Federal Taxable Income and Federal Partnership Audit Adjustments) in response to the federal centralized partnership audit regime enacted by Congress in 2015.

Support
Promote More Favorable Treatment of Interest Expense Deductibility

SB 195: This legislation is in reaction to the Michigan Department of Treasury notice that limits a taxpayer’s ability to fully take advantage of the Internal Revenue Codes (IRC) section on interest expense deductibility.  To allow taxpayers to take full advantage of this federal tax provision for state purposes, the Michigan Chamber is looking to codify a more favorable interpretation of the law.

Support
Allowing for Immediate Expensing of Capital Expenditures

HB 4324:  This legislation would allow a business making a capital investment to expense the purchase in the year of acquisition.  By expensing 100% of an asset in one-year, taxable income will be reduced more favorably as opposed to having to expense the asset over a number of years.  The legislation also reduced compliance burdens for taxpayers because it aligns Michigan with federal depreciation methodologies.

Oppose
Eliminating the Student Assessments Two Years in a Row

HB 4310 and HB 4311:  This legislation would eliminate the requirement that k-12 students take the annual assessment designed to gauge how well students are mastering state standards.

Support
Eliminating the Tax on Personal Protection Equipment

HB 4224 and HB 4225:  This legislation exempts from sales and use tax the sale of personal protective equipment (PPE) and supplies to a person engaged in a business enterprise that has implemented a COVID-19 safety protocol plan.  The exemptions would be retroactive and apply beginning March 10, 2020, through December 31, 2021.

Support
Small Business Tax Cut

HB 5376 (formerly HB 4288): This legislation is expected to save businesses organized as s-corporations, partnerships, limited partnerships, limited liability partnerships and limited liability companies almost $200 million in taxes per year.

Business types listed above, commonly referred to as “passthrough” businesses, will be able to fully deduct their state and local taxes (SALT) from their federal income under changes made in HB 5376  thereby, significantly reducing their federal tax liability.  Because the legislation shifts the tax away from an individual and to the business entity, taxpayers can get out from underneath the federal $10,000 cap on SALT deductions.

Oppose
Impose a Graduated Income Tax in Michigan

SJR C (Irwin):  This joint resolution would eliminate Michigan’s longstanding, fair, flat income tax and replace it with one with a graduated one.  A flat rate income tax is when with one tax rate applying to all incomes.  A graduated income tax rate, also called a progressive tax, is a tax structure that levies increasingly higher tax rates on higher-earning individuals or businesses. Essentially, under this kind of system: the more you make, the more you pay.

Oppose
Violate Michigan’s Constitutional Restrictions on Local Taxes Funding School Operations

SB 20 (Zorn):  The legislation would expand the allowable use of “Sinking Funds” to be used for the purchase of school busses.  Sinking Funds are a special pots of resources a school district can request from taxpayers to use for very limited, capital improvements to real property.  Sinking funds are funded by local property tax millages.

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