Michigan Senate votes along party lines to pass tax plan, including $180 inflation relief checks

Michigan Capitol in Lansing
Photo credit Getty Images

LANSING (WWJ) -- The Michigan Senate has voted to approve a tax proposal, supported by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, that would send $180 inflation relief checks to taxpayers.

Thursday afternoon's vote in Lansing was 20 to 17, along party lines.

Among those to speak out against the legislation was Republican Joe Bellino of Monroe, who called it a scam.

"This bill is nothing but a phishing scam, a three-card Monte, a shell game, all rolled into one," Bellino said. "It would make Bernie Madoff blush."

"Just hand the permanent tax cut over to the people," he added. "They deserve it."

Southfield Democrat Jeremy Moss said the plan, which also repeals the Retirement tax and increase the Earned Income Tax Credit, will help working families who need it most.

Moss insists it's a better plan than cutting the income tax, which he says would primarily help the rich.

"A reduction in the income tax is the most regressive way we could possibly provide tax relief to those who need it," Moss said. "Even a modest reduction in the income tax helps those who make very little very little, and those who make a lot a lot."

Royal Oak Democrat Mallory McMorrow said the plan will help struggling families.

"What can't be argued is that there are significant groups of people who are impacted most, and these are the groups of people that we are trying to help right now," McMorrow said. "People who are trying to buy their first house, people who are trying to feed their kids, people who are trying to give their family the life that they deserve."

White Lake Republican Jim Runestad called the one-time $180 inflation checks for all Michigan tax filers "pitiful" and "puny," asserting that an income tax rollback would offer more permanent relief.

Michiganders should note that married couples who file their taxes jointly will only receive one inflation relief check, which means $90 each.

Featured Image Photo Credit: Getty Images