The idea of expanding the sales tax to services has been floated as one way to help lower Michigan’s budget deficit, but a new survey shows that most residents overwhelmingly oppose this measure.
The poll, released by the the Michigan Chamber of Commerce and the Michigan Association of Realtors, found that 75 percent of likely voters oppose the proposal put forward by Governor Jennifer Granholm and House Speaker Andy Dillon to lower the sales tax rate from 6 percent to 5.5 percent and expand the tax to most consumer services.
Only 21 percent support this measure, according to the survey.
"The more the people of Michigan learn about a service tax, the more they see it as an effort to nickel-and-dime those who can least afford it," said Michigan Chamber President and Chief Executive Officer Rich Studley.
"Businesses and working families are struggling and can’t afford to bear any more burdens," he added.
The survey moreover found that the opposition was consistent across the political spectrum. In fact, 77 percent percent of Republican voters and 74 percent of independents were joined by 60 percent of Democrats in expressing a negative view of the governor’s plan.
According to recent estimates, Michigan faces between $1.6 billion and $1.7 billion deficit for the upcoming fiscal year, which starts Oct. 1.