We are pleased to report that Gov. Snyder has signed House Bill 4999 (Verheulen, R-Walker), which will ensure no local unit of government in Michigan can enact a tax on food or beverages. The Michigan Chamber played a key role in advancing this legislation, from introduction to final passage in only one month's time.
Tax Policy & Finance
Last week, legislation was introduced that would impose a 5-cent-per-gallon excise tax on water bottlers. Not only would such a tax increase the cost of doing business in Michigan, it would also turn longstanding property rights policy on its head.
The countdown is on. Congress has less than 76 days to repeal or suspend the Health Insurance Tax (HIT), a $267 billion+ sales tax on health insurance. The Michigan Chamber is warning about the consequences of inaction: premium increases for businesses of all sizes and types, individuals, seniors, states, and taxpayers.
Several pieces of tax policy have been moving through the legislative process. Following is a brief rundown of Chamber-supported tax bills that are currently on the move:
Food Tax Preemption – Legislation (House Bill 4999 which makes it clear that local units of government cannot adopt local taxes on food or beverages got the final stamp of approval by the Legislature last week and is now on the Governor’s desk awaiting his signature.
Many Michigan businesses are well aware of the Andrie, Inc. V. Department of Treasury case that really muddied the waters on how taxpayers claim an exemption from Use Tax because the Sales Tax was already paid. It has been over three years since the Supreme Court reversed the Court of Appeals decision in Andrie and, unfortunately, the controversy surrounding who owes what tax continues.
The State of Michigan Unemployment Agency (MUA) has implemented numerous changes in recent years to its tax rate determination process. One of those changes could cause employers to pay additional taxes and interest on a retroactive basis. Employers unaware of these changes may suddenly find themselves having to pay back unemployment taxes and interest and penalty, even though they paid all the original taxes correctly and timely.
Far too often, taxpayers are forced to endure unnecessary hardship just to comply with state taxes. The Michigan Chamber supports HB 4976 to give taxpayers an opportunity to rectify discrepancies in tax assessments without having to go through a long, expensive, and time consuming legal battle. The Chamber commends the Michigan Department of Treasury for its efforts to give taxpayers a common-sense avenue to straighten out tax issues that arise.
The Michigan Chamber of Commerce issued the following statement in response to legislation introduced today in both the State House and Senate that would preempt local governments from imposing a tax on food and beverages.
Bills to return the taxation of dental prosthetics in Michigan to tax exempt status were introduced in both the State House and Senate last week. The Michigan Chamber supports "re-exempting" dental prosthetics from the sales tax to help control health care costs.