What The Experts Say About

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<ul><li><p>What the experts say about Michigans revenue system</p><p>August 19, 200942 days to new budgetSpending gap: $700 million and growing</p></li><li><p>Tom Clay"The state budget, if anything, could use a tax increase rather than cutting taxes anymore. With the cuts to schools and especially higher education, an overall tax cut isnt something thats justifiable." </p><p>Tom Clay, retired director of state affairs of the nonpartisan Citizens Research Council of Michigan and former deputy state treasurer under Gov. John Engler.Center for Michigan online article 8/6/09</p></li><li><p>Gary Olson"The [state's] tax base, especially the sales tax, is not growing with the economy at all. That's going to have to be addressed, sooner or later, by the Legislature. there is a fundamental disconnect with how revenues grows compared to the growth of income.</p><p>Gary Olson, executive director of nonpartisan Senate Fiscal Agency MIRS, 7/31/09</p></li><li><p>With the state expected to be $9 billion below its constitutional revenue limit in 2010, it's increasingly clear the state's revenue system "is getting so out of whack with our economy. It's disturbing to me we are falling so far behind." He said the situation will lead lawmakers to question "what we tax and what we don't tax." Gary Olson, executive director of nonpartisan Senate Fiscal AgencyGongwer 5/15/09 </p></li><li><p> "There is a problem balancing the budget because our tax system isn't responding to the economy. Several of our major taxes are not growing as fast as the economy." </p><p>Gary Olson, director of the nonpartisan Michigan Senate Fiscal Agency8/19/09 Grand Rapids Press</p></li><li><p>Mitch BeanAre you going to cut back scholarships, State Police, revenue sharing? To make a budget without more revenue, youre going to have to. </p><p>Mitchell Bean, director of nonpartisan Michigan House Fiscal AgencyDetroit Free Press, 6/14/09</p></li><li><p> (Mitch) Bean said hes concurred for some time with the sentiments of Senate Fiscal Agency Director Gary Olson, who said two weeks ago that a structural change to the states tax system is in order. MIRS, 8/12/09</p></li><li><p>Bipartisan Emergency Financial PanelA convergence of forces has brought about the most serious financial crisis in many years for Michigans state and local governments. This is a structural challenge, not simply the result of an economic downturn. </p><p>Emergency Financial Panel chaired by former Govs. James Blanchard and William MillikenFebruary 2007</p></li><li><p>A persistently weak economy, tax cuts, spending pressures, and inattention to essential government reform have triggered the crisis. </p><p>Emergency Financial PanelFebruary 2007</p></li><li><p> We will not economically grow our way out of it. We cannot solely cut or tax our way out of it. </p><p>Emergency Financial PanelFebruary 2007</p></li><li><p> Fundamentally, Michigan must reform its spending and taxing and must reinvent the way state and local governments deliver services to be more efficient and productive. Government must demonstrate value for every dollar spent.</p><p>Emergency Financial PanelFebruary 2007</p></li><li><p> Our people and communities face economic hardship. That is why our state must make major investments to compete for the jobs of the 21st century and make Michigan a place where we want to live.</p><p>Emergency Financial PanelFebruary 2007</p></li><li><p>As policy makers seek ways of handling perilous gaps between resources and demands during this and upcoming fiscal years, we urge them to tackle long-term reforms in taxing, spending, and delivering public services.</p><p>Emergency Financial PanelFebruary 2007</p></li><li><p>The depth and breadth of this crisisand the fundamental need for investmentdemand a comprehensive response. The state must restructure taxes in a manner that would immediately increase revenues.</p><p>Emergency Financial PanelFebruary 2007</p></li></ul>