Tax Policy & Finance

Proposed Excise Tax on Water Bottlers Could Open Door to Water Rights Battles; Chamber Strongly Opposed

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.  

Chamber-Backed Tax Bills On the Move

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.

Sales and Use Tax: Who Owes What?

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. 

Contesting Retroactive Unemployment Taxes

man with stuff boxed up

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.

Chamber Supports Effort to Simplify Tax Appeals

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.

Best Protection from Wage Garnishment Risks

If a wage garnishment is mishandled, employers can become directly liable for their employee’s judgment debt, which could potentially be a five-figure sum. When you add this to the regrettable truth that Michigan is near the top of the list for the volume of wage garnishments issued to collect judgments from the debtor’s employer, the result is that Michigan businesses are at significant risk.

What can you do to minimize the cost and reduce the risk posed by wage garnishments?