How can we get more revenue to Michigan cities?

I enjoyed Stephen Henderson’s take in the Detroit Free Press on how we might provide desperately needed revenue for local government. We clearly need additional revenues at the local level, and our current system is failing miserably. As Stephen accurately points out about our current municipal system:

“It badly needs expanding, to a more reasonable consideration of ways to get more money to do more vital things. Look at the condition of our schools, our roads, our oversight of child welfare. Money isn’t always the culprit — but it’s almost always a contributor. Think of Flint. More money in the city’s coffers, and they’re not hunkered over ledgers, looking to save money on clean drinking water.”

He then goes on to highlight a proposal from Representative Jim Townsend for a progressive income tax. It is interesting to see how such a proposal might work, and the revenue it could help generate. According to the article, this plan would generate around $700 million in new revenue and would likely result  in less taxes being paid by families who have taxable incomes of less that $150,000.  You can see for yourself how you would fair under this proposal with this calculator.

A perfect solution to our revenue problems? Not sure, but the perfect solution probably doesn’t exist. One thing is certain: We need a new way forward or we are damning Michigan’s communities to fail, and if they fail, we all fail. You can see the entire article here.