Coalition group: “Proposal 1 is all about “special interests.”
Feb. 24, 2015 PLYMOUTH VOICE.
Plymouth Michigan News
The Coalition Against higher Taxes and Special Interest Deals released its first TV commercial in a statewide ad campaign last week. The group is opposing the May 5th ballot Proposal 1, which raises state sales tax from 6 to 7 percent. In the ad, opponents argue that approval of the proposal would send nearly 40 percent of the money raised to special interests.
“The roads are being held hostage,” says Paul Mitchell, Saginaw-area businessman and founder of the group in a recent interview.
“We don’t argue that the roads don’t need to be fixed. We do argue that we shouldn’t have to pay over $700 million to various other interests so we have the right to fix our roads.”
If passed, the constitutional amendment and related laws is projected to generate $1.9 billion annually, once fully implemented in 2018 according to the House Fiscal Agency.
According to the non-partisan agency, $1.3 billion would fund road and bridge repairs, $200 million would be tagged for schools, $116 million to mass transit, $111 million to local revenue sharing and $173 million to the state’s general fund.
Supporters, including Gov. Rick Snyder, are also expected to launch an aggressive TV campaign for Proposal 1. Safe Roads Yes reported $3.2 million in contributions through Feb. 10, according to a campaign finance statement filed with the state. The Coalition Against higher Taxes and Special Interest Deals raised just $1,075. for the same period.
Roger Martin, spokesman for the Safe Roads Yes group, in a recent public statement said the measure’s strongest supporters are, “…police officers, sheriffs, firefighters, and school bus drivers from across Michigan who want safe roads and bridges paid for with funds for transportation needs.”