And this year’s award for most original tax hike goes to…

And our nominees are:

Gov. Rick Snyder’s 16.7% sales tax hike raising $1.945-billion in order to spend $1.2-billion on roads.

– Sen. Rick Jones/Rep. Tom Barret’s school tax (extrapolating the same supporting arguments from the above can be easily made here).

Rep Joel Johnson’s horse-drawn vehicle tax (no, I’m serious…this guy really wants a tax horse drawn carriages).

Rep. Robert Kosowski “sinking fund” school bus tax.

Oh, and there’s one more.

{After the fold, of course}

This one really takes the cake.

Local governments have always been kvetching and moaning about how much harder and harder it is to pay their bills.

They conveniently ignore the fact that just about everyone here in Michigan is also having a harder time paying their bills after the “Lost Decade”.

Bankruptcy. Home foreclosure. Large swaths of abandoned and vacant homes (and businesses). Those mean nothing to us! We here in your local government can’t spend as much as we’re accustomed to. And that’s not good!

The common arguments they will invoke (stop me if you’ve heard this before): Headlee Amendment…BAD! Proposal A…BAD! You won’t be able to enjoy the level of government that you’re used to if we don’t get more money. Bad things will happen.

Look! Is that the boogeyman?

The common strategy they invariably employ is to push for a tax hike under the guise of “public safety”.

Well, tomorrow the cities of Hazel Park and Eastpointe will be employing a rather, er, unique strategy to circumvent the protections that we enjoy under Headlee. And yes, these two cities are doing it in cooperation with one another.

Everyone might want to take notice of this.

These were incredibly hard to find in HP.



On February 24, those cities will have on their ballots an interesting little ballot proposal called SMORSA.

SMORSA was created under PA 57 of 1988 to authorize a “public safety” authority which will encompass both municipalities.

On a quick side note: These cities are not contiguous, nor are they even in the same county.

SMORSA, if approved, will impose a 14-mill tax on residents of both communities for the next 20-years.

Neither city will be providing any type of “mutual aid” to one another.

Taxes collected by the authority will be overseen by a three member board and disbursed between the two communities. In Hazel Park, Taxpayers are looking at a $139/year increase. In Eastpointe, Taxpayers are looking at a $366/year tax hike.

A very interesting bit of info: The millage DOES NOT need voter approval in both communities in order to pass. It only requires a majority of voters from both communities for approval. So theoretically: a majority of “yes” votes overall can cancel out one of the communities rejecting the authority.

One other interesting bit of info (from one of my sources in EP): At the January Eight Mile and Kelly Homeowners Association meeting, in a presentation to Eastpointe residents, Eastpointe Finance Director Randy Blum described how the money will be spent as essentially a “political shell game”.

Arguments used by local politicians in support of this tax hike include the incredulous: “You will still be paying less in taxes than you did in 2008.”

I’m not sure how many people in either city are making as much as they were back in 2008.

Based upon the number of vacant homes and business frontage I’ve seen in both cities, I’m strongly leaning towards not many.

And in case anyone is curious about the public safety aspect; yes, BOTH cities have imposed public safety millages previously (Hazel Park in 2011 and Eastpointe which made theirs permanent just last August).

This election should be one to watch out for, especially to see if other local governments want to replicate this in their own communities.

Stay tuned…

Might being seeing more of those “For Sale” signs like that one a few houses over.


You Betcha! (12)Nuh Uh.(0)

  3 comments for “And this year’s award for most original tax hike goes to…

  1. Corinthian Scales
    February 23, 2015 at 5:23 pm

    Those signs were incredibly hard to find in Hazel Park, you say? Now, do you suppose it is that their Po-po is better at being stealth when pulling capers or, just don't use high-tech video squad cars like Waterford?

    See what I did there? D'oh!


    You Betcha! (2)Nuh Uh.(0)
  2. Corinthian Scales
    February 24, 2015 at 12:27 pm

    Thanks, KG. You reminded me of this blast from the past...


    You Betcha! (0)Nuh Uh.(0)
  3. 10x25mm
    February 27, 2015 at 5:09 am

    An honorable mention for the least least original?

    Gov. Snyder proposes 50 percent increase to liquor tax

    The Snyder Tax Rampage escalates. A second term is a terrible thing to waste?

    You Betcha! (0)Nuh Uh.(0)

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