Much More Assistance Needed
September 22, 2021 (LANSING) – The state’s leading small business advocate, the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), announced today that it was encouraged by some of the items agreed upon by the Legislature and Governor Whitmer in the current budget. Help for small businesses includes:
- A deposit of $150 million to reimburse the Unemployment Insurance (UI) Trust Fund that was used to pay out fraudulent claims due to lack of agency oversight.
- An agreement that the governor will sign HB 4288, which would allow small businesses who are not C corps to take the same tax deduction on state and local taxes as large corporations. This bill passed with bipartisan support, but was vetoed by Gov. Whitmer on July 13, 2021.
- A provision that reigns in local health departments and allows for local oversight of emergency orders.
“We appreciate the efforts of the Legislature as they continue to pass legislation to help those businesses most affected by government shut-downs and restrictions, but there is much more to be done, and time is running out for small businesses that are hanging on by a thread,” said Amanda Fisher, assistant state director of NFIB Michigan.
Earlier this year, the Legislature passed several bipartisan bills that offered robust help for struggling businesses that were shut down and restricted by the governor and MDHHS from operating at a normal capacity for well over a year. These included a deposit into the UI Trust Fund, property tax relief, fee waivers or reimbursement for liquor and business licenses for the hospitality industry, and grants to help individual employers with their unemployment insurance costs. Unfortunately, Gov. Whitmer vetoed this crucial support for small business.
“The state of Michigan is currently sitting on billions of dollars from a budget surplus as well as federal dollars that were meant to help the state recover from COVID. Despite efforts by the Legislature, few of these dollars, if any, have been spent to help to these businesses,” Fisher continued. “Our hope is that with the FY 2022 budget completed, the governor will finally work with the Legislature and sign meaningful and robust assistance to the businesses she closed in 2020-21. NFIB continues to stand willing to help legislators and the governor as they work to get help to those businesses that need it the most.”