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Tedder, Brandenburg Dig In On $4,800-$5,000 Numbers

January 24, 2018

There is no animosity between the two, but the House Tax Policy Chair and the Senate Finance Committee Chair are on a collision course over the size of the state’s personal income tax exemption.

The House is at  $4,800 by 2020 and the Senate is at an ultimate deduction of $5,000.

Neither chair appears ready to budge.

When told for the first time by MIRS that Rep. Jim Tedder (R-Clarkston) was “sticking” with the House plan, Sen. Jack Brandenburg (R-Harrison Twp.) paused for a moment and countered, “I’ll make him an offer he can’t refuse.”

Tedder explained, “I’m very open as we look toward a conference committee. I look forward to discussing the Senate bill, the $5,000 plan. Let’s see what we can afford.”

There was no such overture from the Senator, who appears to be digging in on his figure.

“200 bucks is 200 bucks. I’ll take anything I can get,” he said.

But if his counterpart sticks to the smaller amount will the Senator bend?

He paused again and then said, “No.”

Tedder has done an initial whip count and is content that he’s got a bipartisan winner here as the “vast majority on both sides will be supportive.” Tinker with the amount, and “it may be fair to say I start losing support. We have a sound and balanced plan.”

The Senator was generous in his praise for the House chair telling MIRS, “I commend him on getting into this fight. My plan gives a little more back to the taxpayers. I’d like to ask him to consider that.”

Gov. Rick Snyder apparently isn’t thrilled with either version, suggesting in a news release that the “conservative fiscal policy of the last seven years” may be at risk with this exemption increase. Snyder was looking to raise the exemption to $4,500 by 2021.

Brandenburg, who is no stranger to objecting to portions of the Governor’s agenda, said, “I think the Governor is challenging the will of the people.”

Tedder expects to jettison his version out of committee next week, setting up the legislative showdown over how high can the state go on tax cuts this election year.

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