tax incentives

Today on Stateside, the potential of the cannabis compound CBD as a treatment for people with chronic pain. Plus, a study out of North Carolina State University breaks down why the tax incentives states use to lure businesses might not be paying off.

 

Today on Stateside, the potential of the cannabis compound CBD as a treatment for people with chronic pain. Plus, a new study says the tax incentives states use to lure businesses might not be paying off. 

It's a big game hunt, with big investment and a lot of jobs on the line. 

This week, Wisconsin's governor signed the legislation that landed a monster project from Taiwan-based Foxconn, which is promising a $10 billion investment and up to 13,000 jobs. 

But at what price to taxpayers?

State lawmakers passed legislation to give big tax incentives to a handful of large employers Wednesday.

The bills would let approved companies keep all or part of the state income taxes withheld from their employees’ paychecks. The companies would have to meet job-creation targets and pay their workers average or above-average wages.

Governor Rick Snyder advocated strongly for the bills, but some members of his own party were not on board. Representative Martin Howrylak (R-Troy) opposed the bills. He said the incentives take from taxpayers and give to wealthy businesses.

Today is the only day this month that Michigan's lawmakers are in session, and the House used it to vote on a major new tax incentive for businesses.

Months of lively debate ended when the tax incentive package passed with bipartisan support. It was a vote that defied House Republican leaders and Speaker Tom Leonard, and served up a big win for Governor Rick Snyder.

Donations rise while legislation passes

Jun 1, 2017

Some businesses are set to get millions of dollars in tax incentives -- if Governor Snyder signs a package of bills.

Around the time those bills were going through the legislature, business groups were giving big political action committee donations to some key lawmakers.

Only a handful of Republicans and three Democrats voted against the bills in the House this year. Republican Representative Steve Johnson was one of them.

Johnson says there were lobbyists at the Capitol every day talking to members about the bills.

State money is being used to attract everything from a Jehovah's Witnesses convention in Detroit to an international soccer match in Ann Arbor.

Detroit Free Press business columnist Tom Walsh, notes that the Michigan Economic Development Corporation has spent more than a million dollars this year to bring in things like conventions and sporting events.

Walsh says it's a common practice and could generate a lot of state tax revenue from out-of-state visitors.

Walsh says the payback from the first few events is about $20 million in state tax revenue.

Tuesday the Michigan Strategic Fund OK'd another $1 million for the program through Sept. 15, 2015.

Read more in Tom Walsh’s article in the Detroit Free Press.

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