Breaking Down Proposal 5

By: Fay Li Email
By: Fay Li Email

Jackson City Council voted on Tuesday to vote 'No' on Proposal 5, a constitutional amendment, which would require a supermajority in the state legislature to raise taxes.

"If there's an emergency we have to pay to do something because the state does have to have a balanced budget. If there are 13 people in the senate who say no, it's dead," said Jackson Mayor Martin Griffin.

Local municipalities like Jackson worry they could lose out if the state struggles to come up with revenue. However, economists say amendments set forth by Proposal 5 shouldn't cause drastic changes.

"I don't see either tremendous benefits or tremendous loss from either passing or failing this," said Patrick Anderson from Anderson Economic Group.

That's partly because Michigan already has certain tax limitations in place. If Proposal 5 is approved in November, it would simply add another protection layer, making it harder for state government to raise taxes.

"To some degree it may make the legislature reluctant to reduce taxes statutorialy because they require two-thirds vote to increase them," Anderson said.

Anderson says it's a topic worthy of debate and something that draws strong arguments for or against it. Howver, Mayor Griffin is set on his opinion.

"You just never know what the state may need money for and they need to have the ability to go out and get it should they need it."

Meanwhile, proponents of Proposal 5 argue the voice of taxpayers must be heard.


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