Here in Michigan there’s been quite a bit of talk about new taxes after the governor and legislators signed off on a plan to close this year’s budget deficit by shoving a good portion of it into next year’s budget just so they can claim they didn’t violate Michigan’s constitution which requires a balanced budget. The very next day the governor put out a call for the legislators to get busy coming up with new tax ideas that can be used to balance next year’s looming shortfall. One of the ideas proposed so far is being called the Ticket Tax:
One option—a possible 6% sales tax on sports, music, movie and other entertainment tickets—has galvanized opposition by a group of power hitters that includes the owners of Detroit’s major sports teams and concert venues.
Fans Against Ticket Taxes launched its campaign Thursday, led by Mike Ilitch, who owns the Detroit Tigers and Red Wings and the Fox Theatre, and Bill Davidson, who owns the Pistons and operates three of the biggest concert venues: DTE Energy Music Theatre, the Palace of Auburn Hills and Meadow Brook Music Festival.
At the Tigers’ Thursday afternoon game, Comerica Park staffers handed out flyers urging fans to visit a Web site—http://www.NoTicketTax.com—and contact their state representatives.
The campaign illustrates the political peril of a steep tax increase, which many lawmakers say is unavoidable given a $1.8-billion deficit the state faces in the 2008 fiscal year, which starts Oct. 1.
In response my brother sent off the following email to his state representatives in Lansing and he invites all fellow Michigan readers to do likewise:
- Mr. Marleau,
I’m writing you regarding the “luxury tax”, going to the movies is hardly a luxury. I pay income taxes already and I fully expect to be paying more. I pay “Sin Taxes” since I smoke and have an occasional beer. Therefore I would like to offer up a new “solution” to the states money problems.
I feel it’s time for the state of Michigan to be a leader in what I’m calling the “Salvation Tax”, let’s face it religion is a big business, it’s time for God to put his two cents in where it counts (the state’s coffer).
This program has only a limited effect upon the state. Think about it clearly, if another church leaves the state, so what? It’s not like they’re pulling their weight around here anyway.
I thank you for taking the time to consider the salvation tax issue (those bastards squirrel away a lot of money), if you feel you would like help getting this to the floor, please feel free to e-mail me and I will do what I can to assist you.
At this point I think most people in Michigan are fully expecting some form of tax increase someplace as there’s really no other way to deal with next year’s budget without making cuts that most folks agree are just a bad idea. There’s already plenty of folks upset over guidelines put in place for State troopers that asks them to limit their daily mileage to around 40 miles a day as a result of the budget mess. So perhaps it’s time that the churches in this state started paying their fair share of the tax burden and help keep Michigan in the black.
Needless to say I think it’s a wonderful idea and I am dashing off a similar note to my representatives as well. If you’re also a Michigan resident you can look up your Representative here and your Senator here.