Michigan Companies Enjoying Snyder Tax Cuts Donate $3.2M To Tell Taxpayers To Vote Against Their Own Interests

Wednesday , 18, February 2015 46 Comments

On May 5, 2015 Michigan voters will be asked to vote yes or no on a proposal to raise the Michigan Sales Tax from 6% to 7% to fund road repairs, and bring with it a long line of other tax increases. Governor Snyder cut taxes on Michigan businesses in 2011 while raising taxes on poor people and old people for what he called, “shared sacrifice.” Four years later, poor people and old people just don’t have as much money as corporations making billions, but the governor decided if we want roads sans potholes, it will be up to those of us with no money to pay the bill.

Rather than pay their fair share of taxes, Michigan businesses instead formed a committee called Safe Roads Yes! and raised $3.2 million dollars to convince Michigan taxpayers they should be the ones to pay for fixed roads those businesses need to do business. Most of the donors to this committee are businesses with a stake in the road construction business, so if this bill passes it means our tax dollars will pay them to fix the roads.

A list of businesses making donations to this committee include:

  • Michigan Infrastructure & Transportation Organization – $2.3 million
  • Michigan Energy First – $250,000
  • Asphalt Pavement Association – $200,000
  • Consumer’s Energy – $125,000
  • Angelo Iafrate Construction – $100,000
  • Hoffman Brothers Inc. – $100,000

And $3.2 million is just the beginning, the committee will donate up to $15 million if necessary to fight the Proposal 1 nay sayers and fight to get the bill passed, if the opposition groups can raise enough money to put up a fight. So far, those groups haven’t come close in fund raising.

If people vote yes on this proposal and it passes, then ten other bills will also be triggered and become law. They include a raise in fuel taxes, raising and modifying vehicle registration fees so that the amount will never depreciate, taxing electric car owners because they don’t pay gasoline taxes, and the only good thing that will come out of passage of Proposal 1 (and the incentive to get poor people to vote yes), the restoration of the Earned Income Credit.

It’s hard to say if the $300 million in promised education funding is real. Snyder’s voodoo accounting claims per pupil tuition will increase by $75. According to one school superintendent who took the time to crunch the numbers – because that’s what school superintendents do – the actual increase in student funding would only be $2 per pupil. What Snyder isn’t telling the people of Michigan is he’s cutting some other important school funds while increased costs for schools in Michigan add up thanks to adopting Common Core, and yet another new state standardized test – M Step – that will only be used once.

Snyder and the state legislature must be pretty confident that Proposal 1 is going to pass in May. How confident? Just today the state house voted to take $250 million out of the School Aid Fund and put it into the General Fund to cover a deficit in the state budget. Corporate tax cuts means less money coming in, and that makes it harder to balance the books. Being an accountant, the Nerd should have known that.

Be ready for slick ads on the radio and TV telling you to vote yes for Proposal 1, because it’s going to fix the roads and help our kids. Like a carrot on a string, the people of Michigan are expected to keep walking because they’ll eventually get what they want, if they just keep going.

46 thoughts on “ : Michigan Companies Enjoying Snyder Tax Cuts Donate $3.2M To Tell Taxpayers To Vote Against Their Own Interests”
  • Robert Gordon says:

    Unfair. In addition to restoring the full EITC match, we will see $130 million going to mass transit, and another $100 million going to municipal funding. If the vote fails, the old House plan. . . . to cripple education and municipalities to raise transportation funding, is the option.

    • Up North Progressive says:

      The only problem is the promised school funding is untrue, so what guarantees the municipal funding and mass transit funding are true? I would love to see some commuter light rail go up in this state. The problem is we’re asking the people who are already dealing with tax hikes and stagnant wages to dig in and pay more. Corporations need to pay their fair share.

      • Robert Gordon says:

        That just will not happen unless more people vote in Novembers. In the here and now, look closely at this, and the Bolger alternative. What would you rather do?

        • Up North Progressive says:

          I agree, we need more people voting. I still say vote by mail is something to pursue but I can’t convince others.

        • What would I rather do? Give Snyder, Bolger and the TeaPots all the rope they need to hang themselves and their batsh!t crazy party in 2016. Piss off enough people, and they will show up.

    • Anyone who votes yes is stupid. this is from the same state goverment that said the lottery money was for the schools. If i can’t afford a car because of ripoff insurance rates, why do they want to charge me to fix the roads? charge people who use the roads, not folks walking down the street. this hurts poor people. VOTE NO !!!

      • Val Chaplin says:

        Well, actually you DO use the roads…I assume you shop for groceries? Delivered to your supearkets by trucks driving on the roads…Got kids that take a bus to school? Yup you use roads for that….Anyone in your family ever need to go to a Dr or hospital…be they used the roads to get there. We ALL benefit from good roads and safe bridges. I don’t like paying more taxes than the next guy, but we need road repair, and that costs money….which since the Engler administration, Mi has been woefully short of….

        • Beatrice Wiggins says:

          Do you ever choke on the fumes of your own smug, Val? Is this really the hill you want your argument to die on? Defending graft from Snyder and his friends because “muh roads” ?

          Way to be part of the problem. People in michigan are already giving almost 2/3rds of their income to the government in some way shape or form. Paying for the roads is supposed to be part of that (that’s why you pay a fuel tax, a tire tax, etc.)

          How much does it need to be before it’s enough?
          Should we all just breathe and exist to hand over everything we earn to politicians because they apparently know how to manage our money better?

          If you want higher taxes, Val – feel free to lead by example. The treasury accepts donations from private citizens. Feel free to post JPEGs of the check stubs you’ve sent them so we can see what a great contributor you are. We’ll wait.

    • Mike says:

      My family can’t afford more taxes Snyder has the money to fix the roads but he choses to spend it on Detroit intersts. I’m telling everybody to vote NO !!! On this bullshit tax increase. He is supposed to be a republican !! He acts more like a tax loving libral.

    • Even if it passes (and I sure hope it doesn’t) in a couple more years they’ll say it’s just not enough and will try to raise it even higher…in the meantime both the roads, and the schools will just keep getting worse.
      Remember how all that money from legalized gambling casino’s was going to provide the schools with such a huge cash flow? Hum, I wonder who’s pockets all that cash is still going into today?

  • Bork says:

    Overloaded trucks break the roads, perhaps putting MORE into enforcement would save taxpayers on much of the repair bills.

    • Joseph Martinelli says:

      If it’s any comfort, and I know it’s not, the conditions in West Virginia (Morgantown area) are just as terrible and overloaded trucks travelling on secondary roads does much of the damage.

  • Guy Korecki says:

    Snyder and his buddies can blow me, like I have said b4 the politicians can take a 5 % pay cut and it will more than fix r roads

    • B. Baer says:

      Let’s say (for the sake of easy math) the average state politician makes $100,000/year and that there are (again for easy math) 1000 state politician. Their total yearly salary would be $100 million. 5% of that is $5 million/year. Leaving us over $1 billion short to fixing the roads. I don’t see how your plan works.

      • Beatrice Wiggins says:

        It might not cover 100% of the cost but it’s certainly not a bad place to start trimming the fat either. Interesting that you would hold a stranger on the internet to a higher standard than you do the politicians.

  • Guy Korecki says:

    When it comes to better mass transit the automobile Comp. should fit the bill, the whole reason mass transit sucks in Mich.

  • Miss Fortune says:

    Just watch as the push gets closer to May 5. The Nerd and his accountant friends will have taxpayers convinced it’s just a “one percent increase”. No, it’s a “one percentage point increase”, that works out to a nearly 17 percent increase.

    • Up North Progressive says:

      As I have told people who don’t quite understand the difference, that one percent is a really big one percent. Scary how many people don’t know the difference between percentage point and percent. With the money being pledged it will be an advertisement bomb like none other.

  • robert brainerd says:

    Snyder is nothing but a bear face lier and everything that comes out of his big mouth is a lie!! Vote no on this proposal!!

    • Kate says:

      That would be bare-faced liar. Please learn how to spell. People will take you more seriously.

      • Beatrice Wiggins says:

        You really showed him. I hope one day when you are old and infirm you can regale your grandchildren with the tale of how you corrected someone’s spelling on the internet. Bravo to you.

  • Anna DeWitt says:

    He’s at it again# He reduced the home tax credit, and completing took away the credit for homeowners over 65 as soon as he got in office. I don’t know why Michigan puts up with him! I am sick to death of his taxes

  • Keith says:

    It must be what we wanted, we re-elected him. And if you did not vote becuase you felt your vote counted for nothing, you still voted him in. I hope everything Rick an the other reich wingers in the House and Senate get everything passed that they try to push through. Maybe when reality and the effects of being lazy smaks us right in the face. Our opinions of getting the vote out will mean something from here out..

    • Up North Progressive says:

      I did not vote for Snydley Ricklash. Getting out the vote was the entire purpose for this blog. I talked with everyone I could about the importance of voting out the Republicans. It’s not just turnout that’s the problem, it’s also gerrymandered districts that make it impossible to vote out the incumbent. Republicans are systematically destroying the democratic process. It will take radical changes to turn that around.

  • kaylee says:

    Our Republifucker pushed through a new state test as well. CUT our school funding….gave vouchers so public schools lost even more, made every school buy new computers to support out new computer state test….new infrastructure to support the computer programs,…..training…never stops; but the test will. it is a one year deal.

  • MC27 says:

    Fuck Snyder and Fuck these Michigan businesses!

  • Karen Budzinski says:

    I am having issues with “sharing” on facebook with your pages. When I click on the facebook icon, another window opens and I cannot scroll down to click on the share button. What’s happening??? I want others to know what is going on in Michigan!

  • How stupid donate to fix the roads not up taxes on the poor you ignorant rich people

  • You ever wonder why government panders to businesses? It’s because they contribute the most to government revenue. Do you really think they’re going to focus on the pathetic masses who REALLY aren’t paying their fair share? Contribute to your own miserable entitlements and Washington will hear your voice too. Until then, they have to kiss corporate ass. After all, someone has to fund your free ride.

  • RC Notes says:

    When your primary agenda is cutting taxes, this is what you get.

  • Jeff says:

    If you really dig into the bill and see where all of the money is going, almost every dime of it is going to Detroit, Lansing, and Flint. Why would I vote to send all of my money to places that I don’t even visit? Why don’t Detroit, Lansing and Flint fix their own roads?

    And the commercials. Give me a break. They show pictures of bridges with plywood underneath them saying “The reason why there is plywood there is to keep concrete from falling through your windshield”. Really? Where are these bridges because I have NEVER in my 43 years in Michigan seen anything like it other than the commercial begging for a tax increase.

    • Eric Haynes says:

      Those bridges are everywhere. All you need to do is put down your cell phone and look up while driving under bridges . Detroit is the worst but they exist throughout the State. We simply have too much government here in relation to jobs. This state has layers of taxes that effect businesses and citizens alike. My question; what did they do with the taxes that were collected FOR fixing the roads before? Waste, kickbacks, substandard materials, poor planning, and incompetence within MDOT – is the answer. They misused our money. Our climate and volume of traffic cause damage, sure. But our roads are poorly built and repaired at extremely high cost vs value due to the lack of funds and mismanagement of resources. This proposal does not address any of the real problems, it just throws more of our money at an ineffective system for fixing our roads. That seems to be governments answer to every problem. The taxes already being paid are sufficient, but the government that spends it inefficiently remains unchanged.

  • Pat says:

    I still think My home state, ought adopt legalized and taxed Pot. using the new pot tax to fix pot holes

  • Dave says:

    I see most people here talking about who is paying most of the taxes and who isn’t paying their fair share. What I would like to see on paper is where the current gas taxes that were levied for road repair we are all paying is being spent. I have read that this money is being put in a general fund and a lot this fund’s money is used for things other than roads. I’m just tired of paying taxes that are supposed to fund something and the money is used for something else behind the tax payer’s back.

  • Anthony says:

    Liberal talking points. Rich vs. poor. Class warfare, just like race, or sexual preference, or whatever works for the progressives to try to make a point. Tax-cuts are good. Less money to be wasted by beuroceats.
    Penalize businesses that don’t “pay their fair share”. Who decides what fair is?
    Those that create wealth and opportunity?
    Poor people? Progressive party? Or the voters?

  • […] Michigan Companies Enjoying Snyder Tax Cuts Donate $3.2M To Tell Taxpayers To Vote Against Their Own… – from the Up North Progessive […]

  • Mark says:

    Is it too late to an emergency hold the $88,000,000 renovation to the Capitol building that will build an underground parking lot for Lansing officials and a cafeteria and meeting rooms for the approx. 150,000 school kids that annually visit the grounds? Funded from the tobacco settlement monies!!!!! Schools soon may not be able to afford the field trip anyway and one big room to corral the students in case of emergency is not where I want my kids, if gunmen decide to go bonkers. If we have to build a welcome center and have to spend $88,000,000, put it where 150,000 folks a month will visit and utilize it. This $88,000,000 is for frivolous thrills. Michigan’s commoners are in survival mode, and state spending should be, too.

  • pothole philler says:

    Fact is, government malfeasance shows up plainly on Michigan roads. The government has misused the money we have already paid in taxes. Businesses should pay. We already did.

  • Keith says:

    It’s disappointing that a worthwhile dialogue about the condition of our roads has been hijacked by articles like this that have about as much truth as a political campaign ad. It’s ok to disagree, but flat out misrepresentations in order to sway the public only feeds public cynicism which has crippled the state’s ability to get anything accomplished. As an example, the whole article suggests that the road ad campaign has been bankrolled by companies who have been the largest recipients of the Snyder tax cuts. The Personal Property Tax cut as an example, was designed to benefit manufacturers who own equipment (none of whom were on the list of big donors), but the new law intentionally left out cutting personal property owned by construction companies. The PPT remains one of their largest business taxes. But, if you look at your own list of “big donors”, it was largely construction companies who were on the list.

    So, shame on you for either 1) not knowing what you are talking but being confident enough to write an article about it anyway or 2) intentionally misleading people.

  • Michigan Evacuee says:

    Let’s complicate FIXING THE ROADS as much as we can. Pure Michigan needs to quit inviting people to visit, FIX THE F*&^%^$ ROADS. STOP trying to save Washed Up CITIES. FIX THE F*&^%$% ROADS. My 1999 vehicle has several suspension issues (because of the F&**^% MICHIGAN ROADS!). Thankfully, I’ve been able to put off repairs for a few years because, I MOVED TO A STATE….wait for it….THAT FIXES THEIR F*&^%$% ROADS…Who Knew??!

  • They were so confident. They are just about as in touch with the Michigan people as they are concerned about the Michigan people. Hopefully those bills won’t pass the Senate. Gov. Snyder has no problem handing out corporate subsidies that have no expectation of return, either in jobs or economic benefit. He’s apparently an adjunct “Accounting” professor at the University of Michigan, but all he knows how to do is take from the Schools and give to business chums.

  • […] Ever since he practically eliminated corporate taxes (slashed by 86%, $1.9 billion per year) in the state of Michigan more than four years ago, Republican Governor Rick Snyder has been on a mission to place the state’s revenue-shortfall and hugely increased debt square on the backs of the working class and poor. Those same corporations are using some of their tax windfall to help Snyder convince the working stiffs that th…. […]

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