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Bumstead votes against $666.1 million GM giveaway

LANSING, Mich. Sen. Jon Bumstead, R-Newaygo, on Wednesday voted against the transfer of $666.1 million from the Strategic Outreach and Attraction Reserve Fund and Michigan Strategic Site Readiness Program to General Motors.

“I do not support, and have not supported, corporate welfare. I understand the intent is to keep Michigan competitive by retaining one of our state’s largest companies from one of our most important industries.

“But it is hard to justify giving away hundreds of millions in state taxpayer dollars to one company, especially when you consider all the jobs and businesses that were lost over the past two years from the state’s response to COVID-19. It’s hard to look West Michigan business owners in the eye and tell them we cannot afford to give them the same economic incentives as GM. It isn’t fair to the small businesses trying to keep the main streets and downtowns of our communities alive.

“A lot of people talk about equity, but when it comes to supporting our job providers, I believe a better approach to improving our state’s economic competitiveness would be to enact policies that benefit all businesses. That’s why I introduced, and the Senate recently passed, legislation to lower the state’s business tax rate to 3.9% — the lowest in the Great Lakes region.

“Coupled with the historic vote to lower the personal income tax to the same rate, these moves would make Michigan a better place to live and do business for everyone, both now and in the future. Corporate welfare schemes don’t work out well for taxpayers. The promises made are rarely kept and the return on investment generally doesn’t materialize. We can do better.”

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